Why Lowe Living develop for the owner-occupier: Five minutes with Tim Lowe

Lowe Living recently secured over 50 per cent of sales at their recently launched Bayside project, Hampton Hill, which Lowe says wasn't a surprise.

Why Lowe Living develop for the owner-occupier: Five minutes with Tim Lowe
Lowe Living's Larnook apartments in Armadale. Image supplied

The owner-occupier-focused Melbourne developer, Lowe Living, have concentrated on a specialist market since they started developing back in 2015.

While the term "prominent Bayside developer" is banded around (which they certainly are), my recent chat with Lowe Living Founder and Managing Director, Tim Lowe, showed the builder developer to be much more than that.

"Really we operate anywhere in what I would call the Bayside corridor," Lowe told Urban.

Lowe Living have previously had successful developments as far south as Chelsea, in the City of Kingston area on the coast, running right through to Elwood in Port Phillip to the north of the Bayside area.

"We know our demographic is downsizers who are seeking a lifestyle upgrade. We know the Bayside corridor can offer that," Lowe added.

Construction recently commenced at Lowe's Sera Brighton development, a project of just 13 apartments by architecture firm Warren & Mahoney in the heart of Dendy Village.

And Lowe Living's most recent Bayside launch saw them secure over 50 per cent of sales at Hampton Hill, which Tim says wasn't a surprise.

"We knew we had the right location, and the offering was different to what else was being offered in Hampton," Lowe said, adding that there was plenty of demand for premium stock in the small suburb.

"We were also excited for our first collaboration with Woods Bagot, a brand which would underpin the strength of the product," Lowe added.

It was all about timing and experience for Lowe Living, with the structured phases of pre-launch campaigns and the launch timed to perfection.

"Most people are starting to digest the market again after January and in to Feb, so we knew we'd see traction toward the end of February and in to March."

It bodes well for Lowe Living's next project, just a few hundred metres around the corner.

"The Ocean Street development will be more of a residential offering, more appealing to those who don't want to live right amongst Hampton Street, or want a pet with a ground floor and some yard," Lowe said.

Targeting the downsizer more so than the rightsizer, the Ocean Street project will have just 10 apartments.

"It's really cool in that it offers the convenience of being right on the fringe of the activity centre, while having the added benefits of being on a quiet street just one block down from the beach."

Tim Lowe said however because they know their demographic, they know they can dip in to other markets than the Bayside corridor.

"Putting good quality apartment living in good location along the Bayside corridor has been successful for us, but our capability and strength can see us developer outside of Bayside."

"We are confident in the revenue and location, and confident we have a great following and a great pool of clientelle which is will allow us to branch further in to some city pockets," Lowe added.

The team is soon to start construction on Larnook, another boutique project of just 11 apartments in the inner Melbourne suburb of Armadale. Lowe are set to commence construction of the Warren & Mahoney-designed building in the new few months.

"We're definitely looking at a few plays on projects closer to the city," Lowe said.

Following Ocean Street in Hampton, Lowe will be looking to develop again in Parkdale, another coastal spot south of the Bayside area.

They've recently submitted plans for 30 apartments on Como Parade East, not far from their successful Topaz which has sold out all of its 22 apartments, and three of its four townhouses.

Lowe are in a secure position moving forward in to 2022, a year which has already been problematic for a number of developers.

They have their own construction arm, Lowe Create, which builds their developments.

"We've certainly seen first hand the changing in costs of materials and labour, however we're a little more protected as a builder developer than maybe a traditional developer who has to negotiate fiercely with construction companies," Lowe added.

"It also gives buyers security knowing that the developer is also building the project, which means we control the whole process from start to finish. Having our own construction company means we can deliver on the promises we make to off the plan buyers surrounding the quality of the built form."

An important principle which Lowe Living keenly follow is to be respectful to the local community when looking to develop new projects.

"We know a lot of our buyers come out of the local community they are the ones impacted first hand by development, so it's important for us to listen to community feedback when putting forward plans for a new project."

Joel Robinson

Joel Robinson

Joel Robinson is a property journalist based in Sydney. Joel has been writing about the residential real estate market for the last five years, specializing in market trends and new developments across the country

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