A NEW residential development touted for the Ballina riverfront will boost the town’s diminishing apartment stocks for baby boomers seeking to relocate to one of northern New South Wales’ most idyllic coastal communities.

The region has been labelled a baby boomer hot spot by leading property researcher Paul Broad, who says recent infrastructure and amenity upgrades of more than $2 billion and low apartment prices compared to traditional retirement locations are combining to create fresh interest in the area.

Reside Living Ballina, a $31 million mixed-use apartment project being developed on the riverfront, is the first new end-user focussed project in the town for more than six years and will cater to the region’s growing baby boomer market.

Mr Broad’s research shows Reside Living Ballina, which will feature 36 apartments and 794sqm of ground floor commercial space, will offer apartments at close to a third of the price of luxury waterfront projects in areas like Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast.

“Ballina’s outstanding value, city-like conveniences and stunning natural assets make it a prime destination for astute baby boomer buyers,” Mr Broad said.

“The Reside Living project is well positioned to capitalise on this shift with the delivery of new competitively priced, end-user focussed apartments.”

A pricing analysis reveals Reside Living Ballina’s average apartment cost of $4,824/sqm comes in well below other comparable waterfront projects, including Eclipse at Broadbeach on the Gold Coast ($8,831/sqm), Sea Pearl at Mooloolaba on the Sunshine Coast ($10,042/sqm), Waterfront Pier in Brisbane’s Newstead ($11,791/sqm) and Allure in Surfers Paradise ($15,339/sqm).

Mr Broad highlights a shift in the consumer needs of baby boomers, who are increasingly moving to more affordable destinations, allowing them to unlock capital for lifestyle pursuits.

“The fact that baby boomers will be able to buy a new waterfront apartment in Ballina for close to a third of the price of those in nearby retirement hotspots really shines the light on the town’s comparative affordability,” he said.

“Recent upgrades to Ballina’s infrastructure and amenity have dramatically aided in its attractiveness to the baby boomer market.

“Upgrades to local shopping centres, medical facilities and road infrastructure as well as a greater frequency of flights out of Ballina airport is cementing the town’s stocks as a key sea change destination for baby boomers.”

Reside Living general manager of development Simon Green said the project’s affordability and city-like amenity would be among the major selling points for the apartments.

“Ballina is well suited to the empty-nesters market – offering the services and conveniences they want, without the congestion and high cost of living of bigger cities,” he said.

“We’re confident the project and its location will resonate with astute baby boomer buyers.”

Reside Living Ballina will comprise 21 three-bedroom apartments, 10 two-bedroom dwellings and five one-bedroom units.

Residents will have access to a communal vegetable garden, two parking spaces per unit, individual storage areas and parking for caravans.

Unit owners will be able to pre-purchase their electricity through a bulk buying program managed by the building manager, saving up to 20 per cent on their power bills.The ground-floor commercial precinct will include a waterfront café and restaurant tenancy and four other spaces targeted at convenience and medical service providers.