Art Deco apartments retain an aura of charm in our streetscape. This continues to get stronger as time goes by and as more modern apartments are built. As one of the most scarce and precious of apartment types, what is their true value?
Out of the 1,276 apartments in our latest index, only 91 resales were Art Deco. These are the most expensive type of apartments at $9,651 per square metre, well ahead of brick apartments from the 60s to 80s ($8,672/sqm), post-90s developments ($8,599/ sqm) and even warehouse conversions ($8,517/sqm). It is clear that buyers place a high value on Art Deco apartments.
If you’re looking to buy an Art Deco apartment in a specific region of inner Melbourne, you’ll find most resales tend to occur in Melbourne CBD and in the inner East (East Melbourne, Hawthorn, Prahran, South Yarra).
Table 1 summarises the price per square metre rates for Art Deco apartments in Melbourne according to the number of bedrooms, compared to the average of apartments across inner Melbourne. Table 2 shows the differences in size (sqm) between Art Deco and general apartments in inner Melbourne.
East Melbourne is home to some of the most expensive apartments (second to Albert Park, though the former has more frequent sales), as we’ve established from our overall price per square metre index. There is no exception with Art Deco apartments in East Melbourne and they are far more costly on average at $12,878 per square metre.
A significant number of period apartment resales occur within Melbourne CBD, making up a third of the total Art Deco units recorded. These are much more affordable than their neighbouring East Melbourne equivalents, with differences in price ranging from $2,600 per square metre less for the common 2 bedroom units to almost $7,000 per square metre less for rare 4 bedroom apartments. The lower cost of property in the CBD is partly due to the significant number of new developments taking place, blocking out views and sunlight in many older, smaller buildings.
While older style apartments are known to be more spacious than new developments, they aren’t too far ahead of the average. In fact, warehouse conversions are the biggest apartment type, having 30% more floor space on average.
1 bedroom Art Deco apartments (56sqm) are about 20% bigger than average (47sqm), while 2 bedroom units are only marginally more spacious, with a 5sqm advantage. Older style 3 bedroom apartments (119sqm) are comparable to the average (121sqm). The rare 4 bedroom unit (214sqm) is slightly larger than average (203sqm).