According to Jellis Craig Doncaster director Andrew Keleher, young couples and families are starting to move to suburbs within the City of Manningham. Leafy Doncasteris only 15km from the CBD and has good access via the Eastern Freeway. The absence of a train line doesn’t seem to affect city-bound residents who travel with the Park and Ride bus service. When they return, it’s not to the boonies, but to a plethora of restaurants and cafés and the exhaustive resources of Westfield Shoppingtown. Schools have uniformly excellent reputations with both East Doncaster Secondary College and Doncaster Secondary College offering both VCE and VET academic programs.
The tree-lined suburb of Mitcham is only 20 kilometres from the CBD and with median house prices around the $579,000 mark, savvy young property investors are getting in before the rush. The housing stock is a mixture of new and 1950s weatherboard fixer-uppers on ample blocks. Residents who don’t wish to rely on the nearby Eastern Freeway have excellent public transport options with Mitcham and Heatherdale stations serviced by the Lilydale and Belgrave lines and a barrage of bus routes to surrounding suburbs. Mitcham is home to a really-quite-ludicrous 29 parks, and is close to the Dandenong Ranges National Park and the Yarra Valley. The Montessori Stream offered at Mitcham Primary School can be a big draw for young families settling in the tranquil, bird-filled area. Mulluana Secondary College also offers a good academic program with two LOTE options and an active Performing Arts programme.