Perth’s residential rental vacancy rate hit a four-year low in the month of February, falling to just 1.6 per cent and placing upward pressure on rents, new research shows.
Preliminary Real Estate Institute of Western Australia data released today showed Perth’s rental vacancy rate fell to 2.3 per cent over the three months to February, after hovering around 2.5 per cent for the previous two quarters.
REIWA President David Airey said the last time a reading of 1.6 per cent was recorded for a month was just over four years ago, in the December quarter of 2007.
The total number of properties for rent has fallen 24 per cent since the start of the year, from 2,900 homes to 2,200 at the end of February.
Median rents for units, townhouses, apartments and villas rose $10 to $390 per week, while median rents for houses remained steady at $420 per week, the data showed.
Mr Airey said vacancy rates had tightened considerably in Perth’s outer southwest corridor, with vacancy rates in Kwinana-Rockingham falling from 2.5 per cent in January to 1.5 per cent in February.
The long-term equilibrium vacancy rate in Perth is around 3 per cent, Mr Airey said.
OEIJ Property Group licensee Simon Oeij, whose agency operates predominantly across Perth’s southern suburbs from Canning Vale to Kardinya, said rental stocks at his firm were at a historical low.
Mr Oeij said new listings were currently being snapped up within 48 hours of hitting the market.
“Basically all of our stock is leased out,” Mr Oeij told WA Business News.
“In the past we used to have five or six houses regularly on the books trying to lease out, now, if we get one to rent out, it will be gone within 48 hours."
Mr Oeij said potential tenants were offering upwards of $10 to $30 extra per week on top of market rates to secure a rental property.
“There are people that are just desperate to rent, and it’s across the board from all demographics, from mining people to single mums to couples, to students," he said.
“It’s not just one particular group.”