It’s been a rough year for property prices, there’s no doubt about that, and with the end of the year in sight, homeowners around the country are probably hoping Santa will bring them some optimism amongst the housing market woes.
As it stands, the Sydney property market has taken a big hit, about 7% since this time last year. It sounds like a hefty toll, but compared to most other major cities around the world, you’ll find that Sydney’s house prices are still quite overblown.
It might ease your woes to know that you can get a French castle for the median Sydney house price, which sits at around $1.1 million.
But what about the average apartment price, which is currently around $700,000? Well, around the world that kind of money can buy you something pretty decent. Not just decent, something great, something awe-inspiring even...
Firstly, what does a middle of the road apartment in Sydney look like?
702/38 Victoria Street, Epping NSW 2121 - $680,000 AUD
This tidy apartment has two bedrooms, two bathrooms and two car spaces and is just 250 metres away from Epping station - a convenient junction that offers an express train service to Central. It has a modern open-plan design, with built-in storage and is close to schools, shops, restaurants, a pub - just about everything you'll ever need. But does it inspire awe? Maybe not.
So let's take a look at what Sydney's median apartment price could get you around the world, and hey you might even see a bit of change. Wouldn't that be nice? Hopefully, these properties might bring on a little end of year cheer. After all, it's a nice thought that your apartment is worth more than an island…
Who knows, you might even want to pack it all in and move halfway around the world.
1. 'Grimbister' in Kirkwall, Orkney, Scotland - $532,785.00 AUD
How about your own island in North Scotland? This amazing property offers 16,1874 square metres of arable land for you to live off and self-sustain. There's even a wind turbine that generates free electricity all year round, powering the two cottage settlements on the island.
If you need to get to the mainland you might have to be patient, as the causeway is only accessible at high tide, and you might be sharing the space with a few Grey seals.
2. Camino El Cerro in Condominio Hacienda Rinconada de Los Andes, Chile - $720,299.71 AUD
Have you ever just wanted to sit on a soft cloud, floating along quietly, miles away from the hustle and bustle below. Well, this might get close. Nestled in a corner of the Chilean Andes ranges, 'Camino El Cerro' offers panoramic views of farmland and snow-kissed mountains. With 5000 square metres of land and views like this, you can see why the properties design has an emphasis on natural lighting, open spaces and outdoor living.
Luxury amenities include a hot tub, bar, swimming pool, an irrigated garden and a barbeque area with its own bathroom. It's also close to ski resorts and some of the best beaches in Chile.
Read more: Buying a holiday home: is it a smart idea?
3. 8318 Summit Place in Houston, Texas, USA - $757,337.26 AUD
Sometimes size matters, especially when you compare this huge Texan home to our humble little Epping apartment. With a double lot of over 500 square metres, this home has 6 bedrooms, 5 and a half bathrooms, extensive entertainment areas, a library and a study that can double up as another bedroom, cave, gym etc.
The house features high ceilings in all rooms, especially in the luxurious foyer and formal lounge as well as 'Sun Tunnel' skylights that naturally illuminate the house throughout.
4. Motu Tohepuku Island in French Polynesia - $586,593.12 AUD
That's right, another island - this time in French Polynesia. This 76,486 square metres of paradise is named 'Motu' by the local Tahitians and is so far completely untouched and uncharted.
Located about an hour from Fakarava airport, this spot might be remote, but with the turquoise lagoons feathered with coconut groves, it'll probably be impossible to leave.
5. Tuscan Manor in Pontassieve, Tuscany, Italy - $504,017.79 AUD
This scenic locale is certainly one for the romantic dreamers out there. Located about 20km from Florence in Italy's Tuscany region, this property is brimming with history. Part of the building dates back to the 12th Century, while the other was an extension made in the 15th century.
The combined residence has over 600 square metres of living space, with seven bedrooms and was once used to dye wool products.
The property sits on rolling hills as far as the eye can see, but is a short 3km from the closest town centre, which offers all of the necessary amenities one might need. What could possibly be better than a stunning Rennaisance home in a picture-perfect corner of Tuscany?
6. Tisara Spa Villa in Sri Lanka - $344,975.00 AUD
Tisara Spa is set just 500 metres from the Indian Ocean in the sleepy fishing village of Kathaluwa in Southern Sri Lanka. With a sundeck, open-air pavilion, private spa and lush landscaped garden, there isn't a corner of this space that doesn't whisper serenity.
Interestingly, the property's design takes a modern vision to traditional Sri Lankan ideas, with eco-friendly and recycled materials used throughout - including clay bricks built in a contemporary style and antique tiled roofing.
Read more: 17 interior trends to look out for in 2019
7. 'Salonpää' Peninsula in Finland- $156,920.10 AUD
Are you due for a bit of a quiet fishing trip to get away from it all? How about living in the middle of a Finnish lake? Salonpää is a small island that sits in the middle of the Northern Konnevesi lake, with sandy shores and flocks of freshwater birds also calling the spot home. The nearest town is Jyväskyla, 100km away, so you best be sure you bring enough bait to last you while.
The island has a small cottage with a living room, large terrace, sleeping alcove and of course, a sauna.
8. Limoges Castle in South Limousin, France - $534,172.16 AUD
Of course, we couldn't do a list like this without a generous offering from France. Built in the sixteenth century this Manor was originally used by the 'Masters of Forges' who manufactured weapons such as halberds, swords and cannonballs for the royal navy through a blast furnace, that once sat under the properties side tower.
Nowadays the residence is a lot quieter and instead of the fortified walls that once surrounded the property, leafy gardens sprawl out to the west of the property and a river snakes its way along the northern border.
With 10 bedrooms and 1400 metres square of land, this residence is just 30km from the city of Limoges and is perfect for a bed and breakfast business, unless of course you'd rather try your luck with an anvil and hammer.