Extremely low vacancy rates continue to push rents higher, with SQM research figures showing the national average is 1.1%.

SQM Managing director Louis Christopher says the national vacancy rate increased 0.1% in April but remains close to its lowest ever level.

Six of the eight capital cities have vacancy rates well below 1%, with Sydney on 1.6% and
Melbourne 1.9%. Hobart and Adelaide have the lowest vacancy rates, with both at 0.4%, while most regional areas are under 1%.

“While the small increase in vacancy rates means rental conditions have not deteriorated
further, it is still very much a landlord’s market,” he says. “There are still far more would-be renters than landlords at this stage and that’s why we’re still seeing rents continuing to rise strongly around the country.”

In the past month rents rose by 1.4% following a 2.4% increase in the previous month.
Christopher says in the year to May, Brisbane house rents rose 21%, Sydney 19% and Adelaide 20%.