National VS Western Australia rental market update

While most cities have seen a significant drop in vacancy and higher rent prices due to the effects of Covid-19, things have been tracking in the opposite direction in Melbourne and Sydney, where inner-city apartment vacancies have reached record highs. Let's take a look at the current rental market.

National View

The lingering effects of lockdown and a shortage of international students are expected to keep rents in the two major cities low for the foreseeable future, particularly in the inner-city apartment markets. As a benchmark, the Real Estate Agency of Australia considers 3% a healthy vacancy rate.

What’s happening in the rest of WA?!

Very interestingly, the influx of people back to WA from either overseas or interstate, plus having no other option but to holiday in WA, has positively impacted the property market, and most specifically, the rental market. By all accounts, the vacancy rates in WA’s major cities and towns have dropped, with Bunbury, Geraldton and Broome noted as the hot spots. Missing from the below table is Port Hedland, but certainly noteworthy, the town where the Pilbara’s rich iron ore is shipped to the world, is again experiencing soaring rents and property sales prices up 39% from 12 months ago due to the rental shortage.

Here are REIWA’s latest vacancy stats published 29th April 2021.

We are seeing indicators of the rental market in Perth stabilizing with most investors feeling more confident in the Perth economy, more stock coming available. The Perth vacancy rate is up slightly from last months 0.7% to 0.9% with an ever-so-slightly increase in properties listed following the end of the moratorium.

There is still a steady demand for properties in the lower range of $300-420/week bracket, however, noticeably fewer renters attending home opens for homes and apartments in the $600+. Demand and prices in our more northern suburbs are still noticeably stronger compared with in and around the CBD. The current median rent price in Perth is $410/week, with our office recording a median of $470/week.

Here are a few fun facts from our office this month:

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