The area currently known as Preston was originally discovered in 1837 by a man named Robert Hoddle who named this location Irishtown. He then partitioned the land into 300 and 1,000 acre lots during the famous Melbourne land boom of the late 1830s. From 1841, residents began to trickle in and such local amenities as a general store and a primary school were soon opened. This influx of residents was further helped by the gold rush that occurred in Victoria during the middle part of the 19th century. A church was also soon formed and the congregation decided to change the name from Irishtown to Preston.
Although Preston remained heavily reliant in agriculture, it began to become more urbanised as residents of Melbourne spread out to surrounding suburbs during the 1920s. However, the worldwide depression of the 1930s brought a considerable amount of economic hardship on to Preston and surrounding areas. Interestingly enough, Preston seemed to have emerged from this protracted rather unscathed; adding a staggering forty per cent to its population by the end of the Second World War. This growth has allowed Preston to boast a population of nearly thirty thousand inhabitants and this figure is likewise expected to accelerate into the future.
Currently, Preston can be seen to exhibit three types of real estate markets. East Preston is thought to be the lowest income area in the town; less ornate streets and smaller houses tend to dominate. South Preston is considered to be a more alternative and eclectic neighbourhood. West Preston is by far thought to be the most upscale and desirable portion of the city; well-maintained streets, large tracts of land and Victorian houses defining the area. From this perspective, Preston does indeed represent a lucrative real estate market and will continue to reflect such a status well into the 218stn century.