If your house is situated within 300 metres of a playground it could be worth up to $35,000 more.
According to new report Impact of playgrounds on property prices: Evidence from Australia, homes near undeveloped green spaces are missing out on tens of thousands of dollars.
The research looked at houses and units and found the effect of playgrounds on properties vary from about $15,000 to $35,000, is larger for houses and correlated with distance.
Properties within 300 metres of a playground sell for about $20,000 higher than those that aren’t. If the figure is restricted to just houses the average added value is $32,073.
Speaking at the Economic Society of Australia’s ACE Conference in Canberra on Wednesday, the lead author of the report, Dr Syed Hasan from Massey University, said parks have an incredible benefit for children and families, which has contributed to the rise.
“Playgrounds constitute an essential part of urban livelihood in Australia,” he said.
“A nearby playground allows young children to engage in healthy physical activities that are not otherwise available to them at home.
“In addition, playgrounds facilitate social interaction … altogether playgrounds contribute to improving the living standard of neighbouring residents.”
As part of the research, two undeveloped green spaces in Moreland City Council in Melbourne were examined and compared to similar properties near green spaces where playground development had taken place.
The study analysed individual transaction data for properties sold between January 2005 and December 2014.
While the study showed playgrounds were more advantageous than undeveloped green spaces, other studies have shown Sydneysiders are willing to pay a higher premium, but there is a lack of supply.
There’s also a correlation between proximity to green spaces and above-average property prices.
“We can call it a tragedy that Sydney has never done more to look after its green belts because it means that a lot of people are being denied the health benefits that come from living close to open green spaces and trees,” Dr Shanaka Herath, a post-doctoral research fellow at the University of Wollongong, told Domain in March.
“People would place a higher value on homes near green spaces and are prepared to pay more for them. The exact size of that premium also depends on factors like their proximity also to the CBD and the quality of those homes.”
In another article, parenting author and educator Maggie Dent said the massive sensory exposure that children experience outside in the natural world is one of the reasons they become stronger, smarter and healthier.
“Sun, rain, cold, ant bites, prickles… it all helps build resilience and confidence,” she says.
“Research has also found nature play helps children to fully engage their senses, focus their attention, build their immune systems, be less stressed and anxious, learn to take risks and experience a heightened sense of wonder and awe.”
Canberra is one such city that has prioritised green spaces. The “bush capital” has embraced a connection to nature.
Mill Architecture director and Coombs resident Shannon Battisson said Canberra’s newer suburbs in Molonglo Valley have been designed to embody a strong connection with nature.
“At the end of our street there’s a stormwater drain to stop dirty water from entering the river system, but instead of your average drain they built a really beautiful pond that’s full of fish and ducks,” said Battisson.
“It’s surrounded by trees and there are tracks around it, so my children ride around it every day, I run around it – there’s never not someone enjoying the green space.”
Both Coombs and Wright in Molonglo Valley have a median house price higher than Canberra’s at $865,000 and $856,500 respectively.
Houses near playgrounds and parks for sale right now:
Photo: Harcourts Your Place
Price guide: $995,000 – $1,094,500
2 bed, 2 bath, 1 parking
Photo: Woodards Carnegie
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1 bed, 1 bath
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Price guide: $765,000
4 bed, 2 bath, 2 parking
Photo: Ripple Realty
Price guide: Offers early to mid $1 million
4 bed, 2 bath, 4 parking
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4 bed, 2 bath, 4 parking
Photo: Ray White New Farm
Price guide: $.1 million +
5 bed, 3 bath, 2 parking