People who prefer the suburbs largely valued the quiet and relaxing atmosphere of the suburbs, while city lovers valued the proximity to hubs and public spaces, and the ability to walk or bike instead of driving.
Many people across Australia, Canada and the United States of America live in a house in the suburbs. The “white picket fence” stereotype is burned into our collective conscience, and for many people, the idea of suburban life can be attractive.
However, like everything else, different people will have different preferences and priorities. With that in mind, the home loan experts at Compare the Market Australia wanted to find out which option people preferred when given the choice between living in the suburbs and living in a central, city location.
To this end, they conducted a survey of more than 3,000 Australians, Canadians and Americans to determine who still fancies the “suburban dream.”
The survey revealed that more Australians prefer suburbia compared to the other two nations. In addition, older generations tend to favour the suburbs more so than younger generations.
Interestingly, Millennials in North America tended to favour the suburbs less than any other demographic. In fact, in the USA only 28.0% of Millennials preferred the suburbs, compared to 68.4% of Generation X – a 40% difference!
Overall, 77.8% of Aussies, 54.7% of Canadians and 57.2% of Americans favoured the suburbs over city living.
The survey also found that people who prefer the suburbs are split on whether they would enjoy living in the city instead, while people who prefer city living generally seem to be more open to the idea of living in the suburbs.
Would you be happy in the other location: people that prefer the suburbs.
Would you be happy in the other location: people that prefer central, city living.
In total, 44.1% of Australians, 45.8% of Canadians and 42.1% of Americans that prefer the suburbs said they would be happy or mostly happy if they had to live in the city instead.
In contrast, 64.6% of Australians, 61.5% of Canadians and 73.0% of Americans that prefer city / central living said they would be happy or mostly happy if they had to live in the suburbs instead.
The survey also inquired as to the reasons people prefer city or suburban living. People who prefer the suburbs largely valued the quiet and relaxing atmosphere of the suburbs, while city lovers valued the proximity to hubs and public spaces, and the ability to walk or bike instead of driving.
Compare the Market’s General Manager of Money, Stephen Zeller, said everybody has different priorities and preferences when it comes to housing.
“While we may have only measured people’s attitudes towards two general living situations, it is important to remember that there are many others out there that we didn’t include in this survey.
“Not to mention that every place is different, and even the idea of ‘the suburbs’ can mean different things to different people,” Zeller said.
“Even still, these results demonstrate a large appetite for ‘suburban’ living among the population of Australia and North America.”
To see the full results, analysis and methodology, visit: https://www.comparethemarket.com.au/home-loans/features/homey-or-hellscape/