Vacancy rates reach record lows, housing affordability crisis to continue

09 Oct 2023

A report from CoreLogic shows that the national vacancy rate is at a new record low of 1.1%, as the number of rental listings fell to its lowest levels since November 2012.  National rents have risen for 38 consecutive months, taking rental values to 30.4% higher since July 2020. This equates to an additional $137 to the median weekly rent.

These figures are alarming, especially for households on low to medium incomes, already facing the financial pressures of escalating costs for fuel, energy, food, insurance and many other essentials. Homelessness is a real concern for families and individuals facing growing financial stress and hardship.

The latest Domain Rent Report showed that Sydney rents have reached record highs, with the asking rent for a typical unit now $130 per week higher than 12 months ago. The median asking rent for Sydney units is now $680, increasing by 23.6% over the past 12 months.

The increase in rentals is slowing in pace, however, with tight availability of rentals, higher rents will persist for the foreseeable future.

Dr Nicola Powell, Domain Chief of Research and Economics, noted that the rental market was tight because of strong demand from locals priced out of buying, an increase in single-person households, surging migration and an inelastic and ongoing shortfall of rental properties.