Sydney or the north coast?
POTTSVILLE mum Laura Willis does not need statistics to tell her the Tweed is the best place to bring up her family.
A new report released by the ANZ Bank last week shows more people are choosing to move to, and bring up their families on, the New South Wales North Coast rather than Sydney.
Mrs Willis, a mother of two, said it was not surprising people were choosing the beachside lifestyle of the Tweed over the state capital.
“We love the area.
“We wanted to be close to the beach and family,” the 27-year-old said.
“It's a good place to bring up the kids.”
The latest Regional and Rural Quarterly report shows figures for the Richmond-Tweed region averaged 1.4 per cent per annum popu- lation growth since the late 1990s.
Sydney only managed a growth of 1.1 per cent per annum in the same time.
Mrs Willis's children - Matilda, 2 and Lennox, 9 weeks - were both born in Murwillumbah District Hospital.
“I would not want to live in a big city, especially Sydney. There is too much traffic and it's too busy,” Mrs Willis said.
“I think a lot of people are starting to move here and bring their families up here because it's the perfect place for it.”
The report suggests population growth on the Tweed highlights a strong preference to live on the coast rather than slightly inland.
ANZ rural and regional economist Paul Deane said trends for the Tweed may have carried over from Queensland statistics.
“It's more akin to what Queensland is like; the median house price gets lower the further they are from the capital cities,” Mr Deane said.
The report also shows the boom in property construction has come to an abrupt end.
Compared with 15 months ago, non-residential building approvals are 47 per cent lower, while residential building approvals show a similar pattern, almost halving in 12 months.
Employment has been solid since late 2008, but an increasing labour supply has outstripped demand, pushing the unemployment rate higher.