Fiona Killman, Real Estate Reporter
First published 14 Nov 2023, 5:00am
NSW suburbs under threat from coastal erosion now and in the next 30 years have been revealed. Picture: Darren Leigh-Roberts
NSW suburbs impacted by coastal erosion now and in the future have been revealed – and homebuyers warned – with some of Sydney’s most prestigious locations at risk.
A new report has listed current coastal erosion hot spots along with 20 locations expected to be impacted over the next 30 years, spanning from Sydney Harbour and Northern Beaches to the Central Coast, Hunter and Northern Rivers.
Some of the state’s most expensive real estate is under threat in suburbs such as Vaucluse in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs as well as Byron Bay.
Byron Bay’s erosion after wild weather and hazardous swells lash in 2020. Picture: Regi Varghese/Getty Images
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It comes as NSW homebuyers become the first in Australia able to access a new tool which analyses coastal erosion, flooding, and bushfire data. The tool ranks suburbs most at risk both today and in 30 years’ time.
Port Stephens, Cronulla, Palm Beach and Yamba are included in the top locations impacted by coastal erosion now and in the future, according to Groundsure ClimateIndexTM reports which are available through InfoTrack.
The locations not under direct threat, however deemed most at-risk over the next three decades include Wamberal, Old Bar, Batemans Bay, Sandringham, North Arm Cove, Corlette, North Shore and Booker Bay.
InfoTrack has revealed coastal erosion hotspots across NSW now and in the next 30 years
The Central Coast beachfront suburb of Wamberal hit national headlines in 2020 when severe weather events saw home partly crumble into the ocean.
A Groundsure report for a beachside address Wamberal states that “multi-million dollar beachfront homes sit on a cliff which is eroding at a rate of over 1 metre per year”.
“Sea level rise, increased storms and the effects from powerful future El Nino/La Nina events could all accelerate the demise of some seriously expensive investments,” the report says.
Groundsure chief executive officer Dan Montagnani said while he didn’t predict the findings would impact property value in sought-after coastal locations, it was important homeowners and prospective buyers were aware of risks.
Homes partially collapsed into the ocean in the Central Coast suburb of Wamberal in 2020. Picture: Troy Snook
Image along the coastline of North Cronulla in October 2022. Picture: Ashleigh Tullis
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“Climate change is already considered a Tier 1 risk by lenders on the impact to investment and value, and homeowners in some affected locations are already living with the consequences through higher insurance premiums,” Mr Montagnani said.
InfoTrack Global head of property John Ahern said the Groundsure reports were unique in that they provided property-specific assessments for individual residences, instead of broad regional ratings.
“They are specifically designed for property lawyers and conveyancers to do their due diligence and better inform buyers,” Mr Ahern said.
“Until now, climate change has not been front of mind, but a new generation of homebuyers is demanding insight on risks, to consider the potential long-term impact for their families and financial security.
“Homebuyers have a right to know what could lie ahead as they make the most expensive financial decision of their lives.”
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