Making the move to Geelong

More people are moving to Geelong from metro areas like Melbourne, according to the latest Regional Movers Index (RMI).

RMI data from the March quarter found that more people across the country were relocating to regional areas, with numbers at a 12-month high.

Regional Australia Institute chief executive Liz Ritchie said Greater Geelong was among the top five regional places people moved to.

“Whilst the pandemic supercharged this movement, the regional lifestyle is continuing to prove highly desirable for thousands of people, especially those from cities.

“With high house prices and cost-of-living pressures biting, many people are realising the regions can offer the lifestyle they want and the jobs they’re after, minus big city problems.

“The sustained trend provides tangible evidence regarding the importance of investing in and supporting the regions, to ensure communities have the services, skills, and infrastructure they need.”

City of Greater Geelong mayor Trent Sullivan said the area had experienced “rapid growth over the past decade” and expected it to continue.

“Council’s Settlement Strategy forecasts we’ll reach a population of 390,000 by 2036, which is an extra 110,000 people,” he said.

“The lifestyle here is clearly very appealing for people looking for a change from Melbourne…and we want to maintain Geelong’s liveability as the city gets bigger.

“Pleasingly, our economy is also growing and there is local employment being created, making it more possible for our new residents to find good jobs close to home.”

Mayor Sullivan said council was looking at ways to offer more housing that suited different needs and income levels to accommodate Geelong’s growing population.

“It’s a very exciting time for Geelong and we need to capitalise on the momentum we have now to set the city up for a bright future,” he said.

“We’re at an important point now where we’ll need major government investment in areas such as public transport and smart forward planning to support our continued growth.

“People moving here will need somewhere to live and council is looking to strike an even balance between greenfield development in new growth areas, and infill in our established suburbs.”