And if you work at the hospital you are 7 minutes from work via either hogbin or the highway. The northern beaches have lots of new developments and land is cheaper - very popular with families looking to build a new home (which comes at a premium). Sawtell doesn't have room to expand so will keep increasing in price whereas the northern beaches residential area will just spread.
Yes it is well worth the extra capital. Sawtell experiences capital growth well above the regional average. Toormina and Boambee East are good places to pick up an inexpensive rental but Sawtell is the ever popular beach side village. There are the inland suburbs of Sawtell popular with families and renters.
Real estate in Sawtell is over rated, many properties are over 1 million with no views and are in need of renovation. Most properties are on the market for years. We love the atmosphere Sawtell providers but you can get Better value for money on the northern beaches.