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Research Briefings

We give you access to research to inform your business decisions. Quantitative research is a big part of what we do, but you we also undertake qualitative research.

What is qualitative research?

Qualitative research is the process of collecting and analysing non-numerical data to understand how people perceive and give meaning to their social reality. It gives you the “why” behind the numbers. It reveals the underlying behaviours, perceptions, and feelings that drive property buyers toward particular decisions and not others.

How we do it

Twice a year we run focus groups with Queensland property buyers at different stages of life to gain behavioural insights. We use female-only focus groups as they drive the purchase decision, emote better, and know what is happening inside the household.

We recruit current homeowners or people looking to buy depending on the research topic. This is based on the behavioural model we created and that has underpinned every focus group we have conducted (see the Lifetime Property Cycle briefing for more information).

What can it do for your business?

This is ground-breaking research and has been used by major developers and governments since 2015 to better meet the expectations of the community and buyers. It helps provide a fuller picture of the mindsets of prospective buyers and the community, which can be leveraged to refine your project positioning and marketing as well as inform design.


Briefing inclusions

If you attend a briefing you will receive:

  • A 2.5 hour, in-person research briefing at the Institute’s office
  • 2 seats at the briefing for your team members (max. 20 attendees per briefing)
  • Research summary (digital PDF format)
  • Q&A support following the briefing with our Director of Research.

Please note a copy of the presentation is not provided to attendees as this remains the property of the Institute.


$599 ex GST per briefing. A 25% discount is available to members if three or more briefings are purchased in one transaction.

Book a briefing

Briefing dates & summaries

This is a foundational study of Queensland property buyers that paints a big picture of the housing preferences of owner-occupiers. The research objective was to deliver new insights on the changing needs, dynamics, and decision-drivers of people who are active, or poised to engage, in the property market.

To understand and predict preference, choice, and behaviour regarding housing we went beyond the rational answers. At the heart of this research was understanding how buyers perceive new versus established suburbs and housing. With an understanding of these dynamics, housing can be better developed to maximise positive responses and deliver enjoyable living experiences for residents and the wider neighbourhood.

It is highly recommended that this briefing is attended as it provides an overall context because it is the behavioural model that underpins all other research undertaken and presented in the other briefings.

Attend this briefing if you:

• want to learn what motivates buyers and investors
• how lifestage defines the wants and needs of different buyer target markets
• increase your knowledge of buyer mindsets based on lifestage
• want to understand why buyers prefer and choose certain locations (greenfield vs established) and housing products as well as why they avoid or reject others
• the most opportune times on the lifetime property cycle to market housing typologies to buyer target markets
• Each buyer target market’s typology and location preferences.

What features make for a “good home” is important to understand as developers because we shape how people live. To best meet the needs of buyers it is critical to understand their “headspace” and their “home space” as well as the emotional rewards they are seeking to satisfy with the home purchase. Knowing the headspace of the target market enables us to establish their motivators and predict their behaviour.

Purchasing a house is likely the biggest financial decision most people make, but our research shows it is the emotional and social-esteem benefits of a home that drive the purchase decision. How will they feel living here? Will it meet their emotional needs and will they be perceived positively by their peers if they choose to live here?

Attend this briefing if you:
• want to ensure your product meets your target buyer’s requirements
• seek a better understanding of the “headspace” of the different buyers and the impact that has to their preferences
• want internal features (e.g. storage, solar, categorised by level of priority for each buyer target market to help focus your design and make better value management decisions
• would like to now more about how emotional and social-esteem requirements trump any “shopping list” a buyer sets out with to select their next home.

Understanding how people use a spectrum of lifestyle and recreational amenities adjacent to their home is critical to deliver value for buyers. We explored buyer target market responses to eight amenity types so you can harness this knowledge to shape and optimise innovation and delivery of external amenity. This work gets to the heart of what makes this type of amenity attractive and therefore a drawcard to live in a neighbourhood.

We reviewed the perception of eight amenity categories, including:
• Parks
• Playgrounds
• Recreation and wellness
• Street and streetscapes
• Cafes and dining
• Local shopping
• Large shopping centres
• Civic spaces.

We mapped the emotional rewards associated with each category, unearthing the positive and negative perceptions. In addition to these contextual observations, the research identifies opportunities to improve the user experience.

Attend this briefing if you:
• Desire knowledge of each buyer segment’s amenity priorities
• Want to understand why and how the amenities are valued
• What people don’t want in terms of each category
• The critical issues related to some amenities
• The “must haves” for each amenity type to make it successful.

As we look to deliver more compact housing in established and greenfield communities it is important to understand buyer perceptions of various typologies. In addition to dissecting responses to townhouses, duplexes, terraces, granny flats, villas, and small lots this research also examined the language of modern housing.

This research also delivered some “rules of thumb” for product delivery around density, setbacks, privacy, features, and car accommodation.

Attend this briefing if you:
• Want to understand how to deliver medium density typologies successfully
• Seek insight into typology perceptions to better market your product to the right buyers
• Desire to gain an understanding of the meaning associated with the language we use in relation to modern living e.g. cookie cutter, small lots etc
• Wish to ground truth some of your project experiences and confirm if they align with buyer preferences and expectations
• Want to know what the community do and don’t like about each typology.

Cedar Woods Properties

“We find the research outcomes are a useful ingredient in the mix of information we use to guide our decision making.”

Book a briefing