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Third consecutive month of vacancy rate increases

17 July 2013 Reporter

For the third month in a row the rental vacancy rate across the country climbed, signalling a gradual alleviation of the country’s rental crisis, new research has shown.

According to June data from SQM Research, the national vacancy rate increased by 0.1 per cent last month to 2.2 per cent, which is a total of 63,320 rental homes nationwide.

Of particular note is Melbourne’s June result, which has crept up closer to three per cent again, after four consecutive months of vacancies recorded well under this figure.

Darwin and Hobart were the only two capital cities to experience monthly decreases in vacancies. The remainder of the country’s capital cities either stagnated or recorded increases during June 2013. Canberra in particular recorded a two per cent monthly rise and a staggering 0.9 per cent yearly rise.

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Meanwhile, Perth recorded a vacancy rate of 1.5 per cent in June, which represents a yearly increase of 0.8 per cent.

According to Louis Christopher, managing director of SQM Research, the cause for the rise in rental vacancy rates across Australia differed from state to state.

“As stated with May's result, it has become apparent that vacancy rates are now rising,” he said.

“Causations behind the rise vary from city to city. For example, the rises in Melbourne and Canberra are as a direct result of rises in completions of new residential dwellings throughout 2012 and early 2013. The rises in Perth appear to be more demand related.

“The net result out of this is that rents will struggle to rise for the remainder of this year, and 2014 could see zero rental growth as an average for the capital cities. Indeed, we have evidence rents are already falling in at least one city, being Canberra.”

Third consecutive month of vacancy rate increases
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