Rental market on the move

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According to the latest REIQ residential rental vacancy rate survey, the vacancy rate in Brisbane lifted to 2.3 per cent as at the end of September. The inner city area recorded a vacancy rate of 2.4 per cent, representing a notable change from levels recorded over the past nine months.

Some agents have seen a notable absence of international students in the current market compared to previous years. Indeed, recent data from the Department of Education shows that international student registrations and commencements in Queensland are marginally down over the 12 months to August 2013.

Secondly a significant amount of new properties, particularly apartments, has now been added to the overall rental pool. Finally, as one REIQ accredited agent had commented, in recent weeks many of their tenants had broken their lease as they had recently purchased a property.

Overall rental market conditions remained steady within the middle to outer Brisbane suburbs unchanged at 2.2 per cent. As before, the effects of an improving sales market have also been seen in the outer suburbs with one REIQ agent commenting that the increase in the number of tenants breaking their lease to purchase property is markedly evident. Additional survey responses also indicate a notable increase in investor activity.

Rental markets around the Greater Brisbane region continued to exhibit tight vacancy levels. However it will be interesting to see whether market conditions will begin to improve, as it appears to have for the overall Brisbane City area.
Logan City’s vacancy rate remained unchanged over the last three months, recorded at 1.5 per cent at the end of September

The vacancy rate for the Moreton Bay region also remained unchanged overall at 1.9 per cent. Survey responses indicate that properties are taking around one to two weeks to fill and that investor levels have been increasing. After what was described as a very quiet couple of years, Caboolture agents say the increased rental demand in the area is well received, while agents in the Pine Rivers area note there are some units and townhouses vacant compared to houses.

Vacancy levels declined in Ipswich City to 1.7 per cent as at the end of September. One REIQ accredited agent noted that not many people were buying houses in their area and it seemed that more people were looking for rentals. Survey responses have also indicated an increase in investor activity.

Relatively unchanged over the past three months, the overall Redland City region recorded vacancy rate of 1.4 per cent as at the end of September. On the mainland, the vacancy rate held steady at 1 per cent while around the bay islands area, where the rental market is much smaller, this figure fell to 3.9 per cent.