The Queensland town of Quilpie is offering $20,000 to people who make the move there, under the town’s Home Owner Grant scheme.
The scheme previously awarded homeowners $12,500 but has since been boosted. Anyone who already purchased land as part of the scheme would be eligible for the increased subsidy.
Quilpie Shire CEO Justin Hancock said the scheme was increased to match a rise in land values.
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Aussies looking to take up the scheme will need to build on their land and live in their new home for at least six months.
“We were the first council in outback Queensland to introduce such a policy, and it was a huge success. We had interest from all around Australia as well as globally, from the US, India and Ireland,” Hancock said.
“Two years on, we continue to grow our population and have interest [from people] in moving to the outback, especially as the cost of living on the coast and metro areas is really starting to hit hard this year.”
Hancock said the town had already sold two blocks of land to a Tokyo-based university professor who was looking to move his young family to Quilpie.
“It’s exciting to know that our connectivity is going to allow someone to trade the bright lights of Tokyo for the red dirt of the outback,” Hancock said.
The aim of the scheme is to increase the town’s population back to 1,000 residents. It currently has a population of around 800.
The town includes two supermarkets, a butcher, baker, newsagency, hairdresser, a hospital, medical centre and pharmacy, as well as two schools and an early-learning centre.
There are also plenty of “open spaces” and twice-weekly flights to Brisbane and Mount Isa. And the flight would come in handy, with the drive from Brisbane topping 10 hours and 30 minutes.