Byron Bay: The 'secretly rich' – not celebrities – are pushing up house prices

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Byron Bay: The 'secretly rich' – not celebrities – are pushing up house prices

Why you shouldn't blame the Hemsworths for spoiling Byron Bay: Real estate agent says the 'secretly rich' are pushing out locals as ho

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Why you shouldn’t blame the Hemsworths for spoiling Byron Bay: Real estate agent says the ‘secretly rich’ are pushing out locals as house and rent prices skyrocket

A Byron Bay real estate agent who has sold homes to the Hemsworths and other celebrities insists Hollywood stars aren’t the ones driving up property prices in the trendy coastal town.

While many frustrated locals blame a few high-profile residents for the influx of wannabe models and social media ‘influencers’ to the area in recent years, Peter Yopp of LJ Hooker Byron Bay says it’s not A-listers who are spending the most money.

Mr Yopp told Realestate.com.au the soaring house and rent prices in Byron Bay were actually the result of the ‘secretly rich’ splashing the cash.

Don't blame Thor: A Byron Bay real estate agent who has sold homes to the Hemsworths and other celebrities insists Hollywood stars aren't the ones driving up property prices in the trendy coastal town. Pictured: actors Chris Hemsworth and Elsa Pataky at their $20million home in Broken Head, near Byron Bay

Don’t blame Thor: A Byron Bay real estate agent who has sold homes to the Hemsworths and other celebrities insists Hollywood stars aren’t the ones driving up property prices in the trendy coastal town. Pictured: actors Chris Hemsworth and Elsa Pataky at their $20million home in Broken Head, near Byron Bay

‘To be honest, the people with the real money look like they don’t have any money. You wouldn’t even know who they are,’ he said.

Mr Yopp also said the sale prices were constantly rising, with new records being set whenever a luxury property changes hands.

‘The latest sale is the new bottom,’ he told the website. ‘As soon as something else comes along, it supersedes it [in price].’ 

According to Domain, the median house price in Byron Bay is now more than $1.44million, which is up 22.8 per cent from last year. 

Meanwhile, rent is said to have ‘jumped by a third in just six months’, reports Realestate.com.au.

Notable Byron Bay residents include actor Chris Hemsworth and his wife, Elsa Pataky, who own a $20million ‘mega-mansion’ in Broken Head; model and The Block winner Elyse Knowles, who bought a $2.3million beach house last year; and The Project host Carrie Bickmore, who rents out her $3million holiday home to visitors.

In addition to the famous locals, many Hollywood stars have rented in Byron Bay while visiting Australia, including Zac Efron, Natalie Portman and Mark Wahlberg, who spent his 14-day quarantine at a luxury $2,500-a-night retreat in the area.

The real estate website claims that nearby towns like Lennox Head, Suffolk Park, Pottsville and Brunswick Heads have seen an increase in tourism as Byron Bay becomes increasingly pricey. 

Domain claims that nearby towns like Lennox Head, Suffolk Park, Pottsville and Brunswick Heads have seen an increase in tourism as Byron Bay becomes increasingly pricey.

But even those more humble towns are now seeing property prices increase, with prices in Lennox Head going up 44.7 per cent.

Pottsville has a median house price of $780,000, up from $500,000 five years ago. 

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