Around one in four residential property transactions in Australia’s eastern states in 2022 were from cash buyers who are looking to get a slice of the regional markets.

Latest research from PEXA showed that around 25.6% of all residential sale settlements in eastern estates in 2022 were cash-funded.

In value terms, $122.5bn of the $478.6bn residential sale settlements were funded without mortgage.

The trend was similar to 2021, which saw around $124.8bn worth of residential sale settlements that were cash-funded.

There was a huge difference, however, when these two recent years were compared to 2020, when only $83.6bn of residential purchases were done without mortgage.

Queensland had the highest share of cash purchases relative to the overall sale settlements in 2022 at 26.7%, followed by New South Wales at 24.8%, and Victoria at 21.3%.

There are two key highlights in the report: First is that the increase in the share of cash-funded purchases could illustrate a notable shift in buyer behaviour attributable to heightened market boom post-pandemic. The second highlight shows that the highest proportion of cash purchases were mainly located in regional areas popular with older Australians.

PEXA head of research Mike Gill said these results shine light on an often-overlooked segment of the property sector.

“Given these transactions represent more than a quarter of all residential property purchases, it is important to consider that this is a sizeable cohort of buyers who are less impacted by rising interest rates, having not taken out a loan,” he said.

The trend of cash buyers being older and more likely to buy in regional locations seem to highlight the generational divide between borrowers.

“Younger homeowners are more likely to have larger home loan balances, particularly those who have purchased recently, while many older homeowners are likely to have paid their home loan off or be able to pay cash for a home to retire in,” Mr Gill said.

For Mr Gill, this means that as the Reserve Bank of Australia raises interest rates to slow the economy and fight inflation, the burden falls more toward younger Australians, who tend to be more sensitive to rising rates.

Where cash homebuyers flock

The PEXA research showed where most cash buyers ended up purchasing a property in eastern states.

Regional purchases account for 65.2% of all cash-funded transactions in Queensland. In New South Wales, 56.3% of all cash buyers went to regional markets.

In Victoria, only a third of cash buyers went for properties in the regional market.

Below are the top three markets in each eastern states that recorded the highest portion of cash purchases and the biggest value of cash-funded transactions in 2022:

Top Markets with highest share of cash purchases in 2022

New South Wales



Emmavile – 73.3%

Yarram – 58.5%

Tara – 78.4%

Gloucester – 65.2%

Paynesville – 57.1%

Russel Island – 76.4%

Woombah – 62.5%

Metung – 56.9%

Gin Gin – 71.9%

Markets with highest-valued cash purchase in 2022

New South Wales



Mosman - $725m

Toorak - $893m

Broadbeach - $1.33bn

Sydney - $717m

Melbourne - $711m

Surfers Paradise - $1.27bn

Darling Point - $596m

Brighton - $668m

Urungan - $686m

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