Melbourne now Australia's most affordable capital for renters: report

author-avatar By on October 14, 2021
Melbourne now Australia's most affordable capital for renters: report

Melbourne’s median asking rent price of $430 a week has now been surpassed by every other capital city.

Domain's rent report, released Thursday, showed Melbourne's rentals continued to hold over the quarter at $430 a week, making Melbourne the most affordable capital to rent a house for the first time on record.

The report attributes this largely to the extended lockdowns faced in the city, which has led to a northern migration in the last year. 

The mass exodus has led to increased vacancies and released pressure on pricing. 

Median Rent for Houses 

Capital City Sep-21 June-21 Sep-20 Quarterly Change Annual Change
Sydney $580 $550 $550 +5.5% +5.5%
Melbourne $430 $430 $440 0.0% -2.3%
Brisbane $460 $450 $415 +2.2% +10.8%
Adelaide $440 $430 $400 +2.3% +10.0%
Canberra $645 $630 $580 +2.4% +11.2%
Perth $450 $450 $395 0.0% +13.9%
Hobart $495 $495 $450 0.0% +10.0%
Darwin $620 $593 $495 +4.6% +25.3%
Combined Capitals $488 $477 $463 +2.5% +5.5%

Source: Domain

Melbourne was rapidly outpaced by the rest of the country, as all other capital cities have now recorded an annual change of over 5%. 

Sydney

Sydney experienced the strongest quarterly growth in Australia for house rentals (+5.5%), which are now at a record high.

House rents increased over the quarter for the first time in a year. They are now at a new record high of $580 a week, jumping $30 over the September quarter.

Unit rents increased over the quarter for the first time in a year-and-a-half, by $15. However, they remain $65 lower than the mid-2018 record high, at $485.

It is the strongest quarterly gain since 2008 for houses and 2017 for units.

Brisbane

In Brisbane, house and unit rents are now at record highs. 

House and unit rents increased to new record highs, at $460 (+2.2%) and $410 (2.5%) respectively.

This is the longest period of rising house rents in 14 years, following five consecutive quarters of rent growth.

According to the report, all regions across Greater Brisbane are at record high house and unit rents.

Adelaide

Median rent for houses rose 2.3% for the quarter, while median unit rent stayed the same. 

Houses have now reached a new record high at $440, following five consecutive quarters of rising rents. This has resulted in the strongest annual increase in 14 years.

The report said unit rent growth appeared to have peaked as it has held at a median of $350. 

Canberra 

Median rent for houses rose 2.4% for the quarter to $645 and median rent for units rose 4% to $520, making it the nation's most expensive capital to rent. 

House rents are up 37.2% and units 30% over five years - the second steepest increase of all the cities.

House and unit rents achieved a new record high and experienced the strongest annual growth in 14 years.

Perth

The report indicates Perth has passed its peak of rent growth, as house rent ($450) and unit rent ($380) saw no quarterly change. 

They both remain at six year highs, after growing for the previous four quarters. 

Hobart

Hobart's rental market also appears to have stabilised as house rent ($495) and unit rent ($400) saw no change this quarter. 

The report indicates this is the first time in a year that house rents have held over a quarter. 

Despite this, house rents remain at an all time high. 

Darwin

Darwin's asking rents have now reached their highest point in six years, with house rent reaching a median price of $620 (+4.6%) and unit rent $470 (+4.4%).

Sharply rising rents have boosted gross yields to the highest ever recorded across the capital city unit rental markets.

It may now attract attention of investors as it shows signs of becoming the highest gross rental yielding capital city. 


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Aaron joined Savings.com.au in 2021. He is a finance journalist with a keen interest in property, the share market, and improving financial literacy in young Australians.

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