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City of ArmadalePopulation forecast

Impact of COVID-19 on population growth

COVID-19 is a significant health crisis which has resulted in major social and economic disruption across the world. In Australia, the closure of borders (both external and internal) will have impacts on the size and distribution of future population growth. At a local level, the impacts on population growth and demographics outcomes will be felt differently.

.id developed population forecasts for City of Armadale in December 2018. These forecasts do not consider potential impacts to assumptions stemming from COVID-19. They do, however, provide a baseline by which to understand where the population may have been without this external shock.

In order to further understand how COVID-19 may impact population growth within City of Armadale, we have developed a COVID-19 impact assessment. This assessment is based upon our understanding of typologies (i.e. the characteristics, roles and functions of communities). It demonstrates how these influences may play out across a range of variables, at a localised level. These include:

  • Migration - who will move into an area as well as who is leaving the area.
  • Natural increase - impacts on the forecast numbers of births or deaths.
  • Economic resilience - availability of jobs.
  • Resident vulnerability - unmet social and economic needs.
  • Local amenity - factors that make an area a more enjoyable place to live.
The assessment draws on data from across our .id tools:,, and (including the COVID-19 economic forecasts developed and recently updated by NIEIR). We will continue to refine and update this impact assessment as more information becomes available.

Characteristics of growth areas

City of Armadale is one of 26 local government areas in Australia that can be classified as a growth area.

Typical characteristics of growth areas include:

  • home to large number of residents in outer metropolitan areas;
  • experiencing rapid population and urban development growth;
  • a large number of separate dwellings, as well as significant greenfield future development areas;
  • offer a range of housing opportunities, particularly for first homebuyers, homebuilders, and upgraders;
  • attract relatively large numbers of parents and homebuilders, children, and young worker age groups;
  • significantly larger household sizes (average household size), due to the relative number of families with children households;
  • high levels of cultural diversity with a high share of residents born overseas, as well as from non-English speaking backgrounds;
  • more affordable housing compared other metropolitan areas;
  • high levels of homeownership (particularly owned with a mortgage); and
  • higher share of resident workers traveling (often driving) outside of the area to work.

Potential impacts on growth areas

Based on our understanding of the characteristics of growth areas, we consider the following to be likely impacts on population growth. These insights are not necessarily specific to the City of Armadale, but reflect challenges and opportunities for this type of place.

Overseas migration

    Short-term impact from the shock to net overseas migration will be significant, as around 40% of all residents moving into growth areas are people who were born overseas and moved into the area within one year of arriving in Australia.*

    Longer-term impact will be even larger, as over 55% of all residents moving into growth areas are people who were born overseas and moved into the area within five years of arriving in Australia.

    Some impact on future international student residents. While the impact on the number of new international students will be severe nationally, COVID-19 will have a smaller impact in growth areas compared to other areas which are closer to large universities and historically attract large numbers of international students.

Internal migration

    Interstate migration will be affected considerably in the short-term, due to border closures and economic uncertainty. Most growth areas typically attract new residents from other States, so will likely not attract as many interstate residents in the short-term. Those growth areas (in Sydney in particular) which typically lose residents interstate, will likely retain more residents in the short term.

    Intrastate migration. Typically, growth areas that attract large numbers of new residents from other areas within the State, particularly from other metropolitan areas. Levels of net in-migration could increase under COVID-19, particularly for growth areas with affordable housing and proximity to a range of jobs (see below).

Natural increase

    Births are likely to be fewer in the short-term as fertility typically declines in times of economic uncertainty. Growth areas with high levels of fertility, coupled with the loss of family-making age groups through less overseas migration, will be impacted more severely than other areas.

    Deaths caused by COVID-19 are currently at very low levels. This is due to low overall case numbers, however, the number of deaths could increase in growth areas if outbreaks were seen in areas with relatively large numbers of vulnerable elderly residents.

Economic resilience

    Access to a range of metropolitan jobs, including higher-order service jobs means that growth areas will continue retain and attract some new residents. Access to jobs will continue to be one of the most important drivers of population growth and employment growth in large metropolitan areas accounts for over 85% national job growth. While COVID-19 is impacting employment, large metropolitan areas will continue to play an increasing role in job provision.

    Jobs which are located within growth areas will be negatively impacted by the shock to net overseas migration and resulting slowdown in housing turnover. Growth areas with higher levels of population growth, construction activity and exports, will be affected more in the short-medium term, than other areas.

Resident vulnerability

    COVID-19 will increase the likelihood of housing relocation among households who are already vulnerable due to factors such as, unemployment or insecure work, low income, and rental or mortgage stress.

    Moving house could affect household formation in several ways including: younger residents moving back home with their parents, elderly residents moving in with their children (as dependants), formation of group households and other larger households to share housing costs.

Local amenity

    Access to affordable accommodation means that growth areas will attract new residents from other metropolitan areas, which have comparatively more expensive housing.

    Quality health, education, transport, sporting and cultural infrastructure. Growth areas with these attributes will have high levels of amenity, attractive to new residents.

* Derived from the net overseas migration (NOM) estimates within regional overseas migration estimates (ROME) dataset. NOM is based mainly on the Census information on the number of people who arrived in each area from overseas in the last year.

City of Armadale


Migration is one of the most important components of population change. Net migration explains who will move into an area as well as who is leaving the area. It is therefore an excellent way of understanding housing markets and how the role and function of an area may be affected by COVID-19. Changes to migration may disproportionately affect industries such as the education sector due to their reliance on overseas migration.

DescriptionCity of ArmadaleGreater PerthPotential impact
Overseas migration
Share of residents born overseas34.5%36.0%Negative impact
Overseas migration share of total net migration (2011 to 2016)40.8%96.9%Negative impact
Interstate migration
Interstate migration share of total net migration (2011 to 2016)2.7%-0.2%Some negative impact
Intrastate migration
Intrastate migration share of total net migration (2011 to 2016)56.6%3.2%Positive impact
International student impacts
Residents attending university3.4%5.1%Negligible impact
Residents attending TAFE2.1%2.0%Some negative impact

Natural increase

The size of the population increases through births and decline through deaths. The number of forecast births is an indication of the exposure the community has to changes to the fertility rate. The share of residents aged 70+ years provides an indication of the exposure the community has to changes to the mortality rate due to COVID-19.

Natural increase
DescriptionCity of ArmadaleGreater PerthPotential impact
Natural increase
Natural increase share of forecast population growth (2020 to 2024)52.0%43.4%Some negative impact
Share of residents aged 70+ years (2020)7.8%10.1%Low exposure

Economic vulnerability

Economic vulnerability is an indicator of the degree to which COVID-19 may negatively impact the employment prospects of local residents. Communities with high gross regional product decline and/or high levels of local jobs declining are more likely to experience lower levels of population growth. Additionally, economies with scale and diversification may be more likely to retain, and/or attract residents relative to other areas.

Economic vulnerability
DescriptionCity of ArmadaleGreater PerthPotential impact
Economic output
Gross regional product change3.3%-13.5%Some positive impact
Local job impacts
Local job change-0.4%-8.8%Some negative impact
Local job change (including JobKeeper recipients)-0.4%-14.4%Some negative impact
Employed resident impacts
Employed resident change-2.1%-8.8%Some negative impact
Employed resident change (including JobKeeper recipients)-3.1%-14.4%Some negative impact
Share of residents who work in LGA23.8%--

Note: Impacts refer to September Quarter 2020 compared to September Quarter 2019

Source: National Institute of Economic and Industry Research (NIEIR) Version 2.0 (September 2020). ©2020 Compiled and presented in by .id (informed decisions).

Resident vulnerability

This indicator identifies communities with a high proportion of residents who have unmet social and economic needs (housing, income, education etc.) Due to COVID-19, these communities, particularly those with a younger, more mobile population, are expected to experience a greater change in how or where residents live (i.e. younger residents moving back home with their parents, formation of group households to share costs or leaving the area in search of employment opportunities elsewhere).

Resident vulnerability
DescriptionCity of ArmadaleGreater PerthPotential impact
Socioeconomic vulnerability
SEIFA Rank (Disadvantage)9941,026Some negative impact
Disengaged youth of 15-24 year olds14.6%9.4%Negative impact
Share of low income households15.5%15.7%Some negative impact
Housing vulnerability
Share of households under housing stress13.2%10.7%Negative impact
Mortgage vulnerability
Share of households owned with mortgage49.8%40.0%Exposed
Share of households under mortgage stress11.2%9.0%Negative impact
Rental vulnerability
Share of households privately rented18.4%22.0%Some exposure
Share of households under rental stress35.7%28.0%Negative impact
Residential mobility
Share population of 18-39 year olds33.9%32.3%Some exposure

Local amenity

Local amenity considers the amenity a region provides its residents, with a particular focus on access to affordable housing and access to lifestyle opportunities. It is an indicator of the livability of an area, in the context of COVID-19.

Local amenity
DescriptionCity of ArmadaleGreater PerthPotential impact
Housing Affordability
Housing Median Value$386,000$502,000Positive impact
Unit Median Value$240,000$365,000Positive impact

Data updates

This page shows the latest version of how COVID-19 may impact population growth for City of Armadale. As new information becomes available (e.g. data revisions, additional data sets of relevance) updates will be applied.

Recent updates include:

  • 7 October 2020: Update to include National Institute of Economic and Industry Research (NIEIR) Version 2.1 (September 2020). NIEIR has estimated the potential impacts of coronavirus on economic activity, employment and sectors at the LGA level. Model outputs above are based on information available before September 24.
  • 25 September 2020: Update to include National Institute of Economic and Industry Research (NIEIR) Version 2.0 (September 2020).

Given the dynamic nature of COVID-19, revisions will be made to our population forecasts once sufficient data is available.


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