Luminary highlights the owner-occupier trend

Market Insights
7 years ago
3 minutes
There’s a small change happening in certain pockets of the apartment development market. As the inner and outer suburbs transition, like the CBDs in our major cities, to the provision of affordable, quality apartments, they are doing so predominantly at their own scale.
That is, apartment projects like Luminary in Melbourne’s Hawthorn. Consisting of just 22 two and three bedroom apartments it’s boutique, extremely high standard and aimed more at the owner-occupier than the investor.
Each apartment at Luminary is packed with the kind of design features we’re talking about, from the premium fixtures and finishes like timber flooring and marble bathroom tiling, to the sleek entertainers kitchens and on-point black tapware.
Projects like this also appeal to those who have been renting for a while and are ready to take the next step up to owning. Again, designing a project with unique characteristics like Luminary’s feature brass range hood detailing and designated big screen tv areas helps to pique the interest of discerning owner-occupiers. 
Developers Lechte Corporation have almost created a template for the ideal urban mixed-use apartment project which includes a small retail space at ground level – food and drink doesn’t get more local.
Another pleasing benefit of a boutique project like this is the opportunity architects have to create a building that’s as impressive on the outside as in, designing buildings and facades that give homeowners a genuine sense of pride. Luminary’s sculpted exterior concrete is a great example of this approach to creating unique homes with individual character – something larger developments are less able to deliver.
In terms of the apartment layouts, we’re noticing the trend towards larger living spaces, which occasionally adds just a small premium to the price, but it seems buyers are thinking of their purchase as more of a longer-term home than an apartment. It’s a small distinction, but it is there and buyers seem to be clued in to the benefits.
Of course, convenience is also a factor. Buying to live closer to the city can pay dividends when it comes to cutting down on the costs in both money and time on a long commute.
Suburbs like Hawthorn don’t have to try too hard to sell themselves in this regard, with plenty of transport options or a quick drive or bike ride making the journey less of a pain. Back this up with the engaging lifestyle vibe that’s constantly on display and the job’s pretty much done.
What’s more interesting is the way in which interest in building places to live in, rather than to rent, seems to help define the character of a neighbourhood. Projects like Luminary are designed to such a high standard that, in all honesty, most people who buy them will want to live in them.
Anyone considering becoming an owner-occupier in one of Hawthorn’s boutique stars (and we know there’ll be a few of you) should take a look at Luminary soon – the display suite is open for inspection from 11am-1pm Saturdays and 4-6pm Thursdays and from what we hear interest has been high so far.
Take a look at our featured article on Luminary here.