National Rental Vacancy Rates Tighten Further To Ten Year Low

Rents surge in capital cities

SQM Research today has revealed the national residential rental vacancy rate fell to 1.7% over the month of June 2021 from 1.8% in May. This represents the lowest vacancy rate at the national level since May 2011. Vacancy rates continue to fall for Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, and Hobart, while some regional locations recorded a moderate rise in vacancies.

The total number of vacancies Australia-wide now stands at 60,457 residential properties, down from 62,144 in May. Melbourne’s vacancy rate fell to 3.5% in June from 3.7% in May, while in Sydney vacancy rates dropped to 2.8% from 2.9%. In AdelaideCanberra, and Hobart, the vacancy rate remained below 1.0%, while Perth, Brisbane, and Darwin’s rate remained constant. Darwin has been positively affected by Covid-19, as low vacancy rates continue to boost rents. Vacancy rates fell again in the Sydney CBD and Melbourne CBD to 5.6% and 5.8%, respectively, representing a return towards more-longer term levels.

Louis Christopher, Managing Director of SQM Research said: “Rental vacancy rates have fallen in our largest capital cities. Meanwhile, there was some further evidence that we have reached the high point in regional occupancy and some relief for local renters may be coming later this year, notwithstanding Sydney’s latest lockdown. Rents are now accelerating in our larger capital cities which may have ramifications for the CPI read in the coming quarters.”

Asking Rents

Over the month to 12 July 2021, the capital city average asking rents rose 1.8% for houses to $575 per week and rose 1.7% for units to $419. Over the year, capital city rents rose 7.7% for houses. However, units are still recording falls of 0.5%. Outside the capital cities, rents for houses have recorded stunning increases over the year, with Brisbane up by 10.4%, Perth up by 13.7%, and Canberra up by 16.4%. Nationally, rents rose 15.1% for houses over the year and 6.6% for units. Again, that growth has been fuelled by strong rises in rents in regional locations where there is a shortage of rental accommodation.

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