The latest statistics published by investment research house SQM Research showed vacancy rates for residential properties around the country remained steady at 2.2 per cent in September.
The actual number of vacancies nationwide did experience a slight rise, increasing from 71,540 to 72,955.
Vacancy rates in Australia’s two largest capital cities improved marginally from 2 per cent to 2.1 per cent in Sydney and from 1.7 per cent to 1.9 per cent in Melbourne. This movement was tempered by the results in Perth, where vacancy rates dropped from 4.6 in August to 4.5 per cent in September.
Both Canberra and Hobart vacancy rates remained stable over the month staying at 1 per cent and 0.4 per cent respectively.
SQM Research is predicting seasonal rises in these rates potentially fuelled by the end of the university year.
Rental charges for residential properties climbed by 0.2 per cent for the month ended 12 October, with the average rental for a house in the major capital cities being $550 a week. This represents a 1.9 per cent increase over a full year.
Average asking rent for units in the capital cities has also experienced a rise of 1.9 per cent during the past year, but remained steady over the month at $438 per week.
Sydney was indicative of this trend with its rents for houses up by 1.8 per cent over the year and up by 0.7 per cent for the month. Australia’s largest capital city now has the highest asking rent in the nation for a three-bedroom house, being $738 a week. The city’s asking rent for units increased by 0.2 per cent over the year and now stands at $521 per week.
The Melbourne market performed stronger than its New South Wales counterpart, experiencing a 4.9 per cent increase in asking rent for the 12 months ending 12 October. The rise for the month of 0.2 per cent was more modest. Asking rent for units also went up in Melbourne, rising 4.3 per cent over the past year. However, rents actually fell for units in September by 1.1 per cent.