Median advertised rents in Australian capital cities rose 5.8% over the three months ended June, according to a new PropTrack report.

The median renter signing on to live in the big smoke over that period forked out $550 each week – a 17% increase on the same time last year.

“Rental markets continue to be extremely challenging for renters, with rents surging across much of the country amid strong demand and very limited availability,” PropTrack economist Angus Moore said.

“This is especially true in Sydney and Melbourne, where weekly rents have increased significantly after falling in these cities during 2020 and 2021.”

The median weekly rent on a unit in Sydney would set a tenant back $595 last quarter, while the same property in Melbourne could command $470 a week. Those figures mark annual jumps of 19% and 17.5% respectively.

And the smaller cities offered little respite.

The median rent on a house in Perth increased nearly 15% to $550 a week over the 12 months to June, while the price of a median unit in the beachside city was hiked almost 12% to $470 a week.

In Brisbane, the median house set a tenant back $565 a week in the June quarter – a near-11% year-on-year jump. At the same time, the median rent on a unit climbed 15% to $490 a week.

Speaking to the Savings Tip Jar podcast, PropTrack director of economic research Cameron Kusher said the 400,000 migrants arriving this year will place further strain on the rental market.

"Ultimately, the way to fix what's happening in the rental market at the moment is to reduce demand. And you either reduce demand by having fewer people come into the country, no one seems to willing to let that be the case," Mr Kusher said.

"Or you reduce demand by getting more people to buy their first home and stop renting. And it's very hard to make that leap from renting to owning at the moment because in most instances, paying off a mortgage is more expensive than it is to rent despite the rental growth we've had."

But there appears to be a silver lining for renters with price growth in some capital cities beginning to ease.

Median advertised rents in Adelaide remained flat quarter-on-quarter, while those in Brisbane lifted 1.9% - the slowest pace in two years.

“Rents are likely to continue growing in capitals over the coming months,” Mr Moore said.

“But, with rental vacancy rates looking to have stabilised, and growth easing in some capitals, national rent growth may start to slow.”

Median advertised rents in regional Australia remained flat last quarter at $480 a week. That represents a 6.7% year-on-year increase – its slowest pace since early 2021.

“The good news for regional renters is rent growth looks to be moderating after three years of brisk growth,” Mr Moore said.


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