Brisbane landlords, Brisbane's rental market

Useful Facts Without Opinions: Inner Brisbane vacancy rate’s “dramatic dive”

A sharp drop in available rentals has taken many market watchers by surprise, with the Real Estate Institute’s (REIQ) latest inner Brisbane vacancy rates confirming a decade low 1.5%. This means 98.5% of rental homes across our inner-city are occupied.

The graph shows the local market back to 2008 and the GFC, with the orange vacancy rate band of 2.5% to 3.5% defined by the REIQ as a balanced market. With rapidly rising demand our Brisbane property management team has zero vacancy – every property we look after is rented.

REIQ CEO Antonia Mercorella said with the rental squeeze being experienced right across Queensland, now even depleting the vast rental stock in Inner Brisbane, it could signal a renewed interest in city living.

“While we continue to see regional markets gradually tightening, Brisbane’s vacancy rates have taken a dramatic dive this quarter, especially when looking at the 0-5km Inner Brisbane ring,” Ms Mercorella said.

“This drop could reflect the return of international students as well as hospitality and entertainment workers to the inner city, or simply prospective renters focusing their search in areas where the vacancy rate is healthier and they have more options and therefore better prospects.

“Queensland has also had a steep population boost from interstate migration, with those making the shift to the Sunshine State potentially deciding to start their life in the heart of the capital city.

“Yet another factor that’s added to the squeeze on rental stock during this quarter is the February flooding disaster displacing people from their homes.”

Ms Mercorella said with investors selling and the dominant purchasers being owner occupiers, more homes that were previously investment properties were effectively being removed from the rental market, shrinking an already scarce base of rental supply.

“With the second stage of rental reforms looming, the last thing we need right now in the midst of a rental crisis, is legislative reform which undermines investor confidence,” she said.