When Liz Morley and Manni Zantiotis put an offer on a house in Kooringal, it was three years to the day from when they first began looking for a home.
The journey took the couple everywhere from the Sunshine Coast to Tasmania, as they looked for an escape from fast-paced living on Sydney's north shore.
Ms Morley said the couple had originally planned to move to the coast somewhere, but found housing expensive even in regional NSW.
That changed when relatives from Wagga returned to the city after a stint overseas.
"We went down for a visit to see them, as soon as we got to Wagga we felt really comfortable," Ms Morley said.
"It just really felt right."
Both originally from Gunnedah, Mr Zantiotis said they had begun to feel "suffocated" by big city living and walking along Wagga beach being greeted by each stranger that passed them made them feel at home.
"It was just a moment of, can we just stay here forever?" he said.
The couple fell in love with the first house they looked at, a spacious Kooringal home with a much larger backyard than they were used to.
After three years looking in the fast-paced regional market, they knew what they wanted and acted quickly.
"At the open I think there were six groups that went through, and all parties seemed to be very interested," Ms Morley said.
"Luckily we were in a position to put an offer in immediately and it was accepted."
While Ms Morley and Mr Zantiotis wanted to move regionally long before the coronavirus pandemic, the shift in focus towards working remotely has helped them make the final step with Ms Morley already working from home for a large pharmaceutical company.
"For all the sadness that's come with COVID, it's also given people opportunity to be able to simplify their life, the fact I can take my job with me is massive and it gives us the opportunity to be able to have a tree change," Ms Morley said.
"It gives us the opportunity to be able to afford property elsewhere and just to be able to have a lifestyle."
Raine and Horne director Mathew Longmore said stories like the one of Ms Morley and Mr Zantiotis were becoming more common.
"It comes down to quality of life," he said.
He said Sydneysiders could get back up to 10 hours a week on the commute alone, with all the health, education and food they need here.
"There's nothing the city has got, particularly through this pandemic, that the bush hasn't got ... our facilities regionally are at a very high level now," he said.
"Finally people have caught on to the fact that is it true, we've got a lot to offer."