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Take a punt on Melbourne’s top racing suburbs

Whether it’s the clip clop of heels heading trackside, or the collective roar of thousands of punters egging their picks across the line, Victoria’s racecourse suburbs are buzzing with the spring racing season now in full swing.

For horse-mad house hunters in the market for a new home, Melbourne’s landscape offers plenty of options – from the hustle and bustle of city-side Caulfield, to the quiet plains of Ballarat:

1.Consider Caulfield

Home of the Melbourne Racing Club, Caulfield promises all the action, spirit and atmosphere of the races, all conveniently situated a stone’s throw from Port Phillip Bay. Generous gardens, sleek apartments and immaculate period homes surround the Caulfield Racecourse, punctuated with pockets of Art Deco and retro character.

The median price for a 2-bedroom Caulfield house currently sits at $1,859,000, a figure that has grown by 15.9% in the last year alone. Tenants, on the other hand, can find a 3-bedroom home for a weekly rent of $695. Great public transport options and plenty of tree-lined streets and parks make this a popular bet for independent youth and under 35s.

2.Move to Mornington

It’s not often that racegoers can find a dream home that combines proximity to the track with a good healthy dose of vitamin sea. This seaside suburb offers a more relaxed lifestyle for those looking to get out of the city. Plus, Mornington’s version of “The Esplanade” is home to a range of must-visit cafes and shops – a popular destination in summer for tourists and locals alike.

With sleek apartment complexes and daydream cliff-side mansions in the running, prospective buyers can expect to pay a median $805,000 for a house and $620,000 for a unit. These prices have steadily increased by around 10% a year, and rent remains affordable at $450 per week. Head south for weatherboard cottages, tech-savvy designer units and tea tree-fenced homes.

3.Giddy-up, Geelong

The Geelong Cup comes in second on the calendar of Melbourne’s biggest racing events, with the Geelong Racecourse itself hosting more annual races than any other in the state. For a trackside investment that repays with racing action all-year-round, you can settle in this vibrant seaside locale for around $718,250 (houses) or $453,500 (units).

And popularity in the area is only increasing, with the median house price continuing to see substantial growth in the last year. While Geelong has traditionally attracted older couples and families, recent years have seen independent youth gravitating west to get in on the action, too – now making up 16% of the region’s population.

4.Buy in Ballarat

The Ballarat Cup brings people together from all over country Victoria. Whether you already live regionally or you’re a city-sider looking for a quiet spot to settle, Ballarat provides a true country experience, complete with the promise of a burgeoning investment and lower rent premiums. With big backyards, close proximity to wilderness areas and heritage homes lining every street, the Great Australian Dream is alive and well just 100km from Melbourne’s CBD.Here, your average home will go for $410,000, whilst tenants will pay around $240 per week. And now is prime time to take a punt on the city of gold, with high demand in the market rising as Melbourne’s borders sprawl outwards. The recent federal budget incentive for stamp duty in regional Victoria, along with overall affordability, is driving this demand.

In fact, the number of interested buyers for properties in Ballarat currently sits at 1088 per property – significantly higher than the Victorian average of 811. We’d bet on that, hands down.