Couple swap tight city flat for lifestyle

Sea change: William and Jessica Zondag, with baby Ethan, like Austinmer's lifestyle. Picture: KIRK GILMOUR

Sea change: William and Jessica Zondag, with baby Ethan, like Austinmer's lifestyle. Picture: KIRK GILMOUR

Property investors turn sights south

William and Jess Zondag lived in a two-bedroom apartment in the inner-city Sydney suburb of Waterloo with their baby Ethan until recently.

They decided to move to the Illawarra for a better lifestyle and in early March bought a large family home at Austinmer.

They moved into their home, walking distance to the beach, five weeks ago with Ethan, who is now 10 months.

The couple are part of a growing trend of people moving to the region chasing value for money.

"The property prices in Sydney are very steep and what you get for your money down here is a lot better than what you get in Sydney," said Mr Zondag.

"My wife's family is from Wollongong and we wanted to be close to them.

"The lifestyle change was also important to us. We like the beach, the relaxed atmosphere and the fact that people say 'hello' when you walk on the street."

Mr Zondag commutes to Sydney on the train.

"The nice lifestyle here, and being close to family, is worth the extra travel," he said.

Meanwhile, Kevin Young, owner of the Property Club, said the federal budget would see Wollongong property prices soar in the next 12 months and restore faith in the property sector.

"The earn or learn policy by the government for our young people, combined with the huge spending on infrastructure, will see more jobs created, which will in turn stimulate the property sector for years to come," Mr Young said.

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