Perth: Australia's comeback kid

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In good news for investors who are eyeing up the Perth market, recently released data indicates that the city’s vacancy rate has taken a dive.

According to the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia (REIWA) preliminary figures, the three-monthly vacancy rate for metropolitan Perth dropped to 2.3% in February. This was a 0.2% drop on January’s figure.

Looking at what the REIWA describes as the “volatile” month-only reading, Perth’s vacancy rate for February was just 1.6% – down from 2.8% at the end of 2011.

However, it has been a tale of two markets when it comes to rental increases. According to the REIWA, the median rent for units, apartments, villas and townhouses increased by $10 to reach a median of $390 per week. Rents for houses, on the other hand, remained flat at $420 per week.

“The fall in the vacancy rate is not surprising as we have seen the volume of property listed for rent fall 24% since the start of the year, from 2,900 homes to 2,200 at the end of February. It’s also the case that there is strong seasonal demand for rental property in the March quarter,” said REIWA president David Airey.

What’s driving this rental pressure, said Airey, is the number of residents who are choosing to rent rather than buy – as well as a growing demand for rental property from new migrants.

Visit the where to buy now section of our property investment forum to discuss Perth’s rental hotspots.

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