House prices in Heidelberg Heights have grown 12.5 per cent in the past year to a median of $692,000--well above the 7.4 per cent growth rate of greater Melbourne.

The suburb has long been overshadowed by its surrounding areas, which include Ivanhoe, Eaglemont, and Heidelberg proper to the southeast. When both Eaglemont and Ivanhoe became million dollar postcodes in 2008, buyers began finding their million dollars did not go far along the Yarra. Hence, this justified the idea of splashing $1 million in Heidelberg Heights, especially when buyers compared what they could get with that money.

For instance, a $1.5 million luxury five-bedroom home on Heidelberg Heights could cost $2 million to $2.5 million in Eaglemont or Ivanhoe.

“A whole lot of people like to live in a house like that but simply can’t afford it,” said agent James Davis of Miles Real Estate.

According to listing agent Brett Schembri of Ray White MacLeod, Heidelberg Heights is no doubt shedding off its bad reputation. The same sentiment was expressed by Banyule Mayor Craig Langdon.

“I have always been of the opinion this area would boom one day,” Langdon said, who also said that house values indicate a changing perception of the area. It also helps that Heidelberg Heights has efficient public transport and attractive city views.

However, Langdon said that he is also concerned about affordability for long-term residents, given the sharp rate increases in the suburb.