Geelong tops major regional cities as rent prices rise 5.6 per cent in 12 months
GEELONG has recorded the highest jump in asking rents of any of major Australian regional city on a back of softening property prices.
Advertised rental rates rose $20 a week — 5.6 per cent — for houses across the region in the 12 months to June, according to new CoreLogic data.
Unit landlords also sought an extra $15 a week from tenants, the quarterly Regional Market Update reveals.
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CoreLogic research analyst Cameron Kusher said the 5.6 per cent increase reflected growing demand for rentals in Geelong combined with low vacancy rates.
Mr Kusher said renting was an increasingly attractive option in the region, where it was now cheaper to rent than buy a house.
He said during periods when house prices were rising, more people tended to move out of rental accommodation and into the housing market.
“Once the market starts to drop, you tend to find the rental market picks up a bit so we’re clearly seeing that in Geelong,” he said.
Harcourts, North Geelong agent Joe Grgic said with fewer investors actively buying in Geelong earlier in the year, prospective tenants faced stiff competition for limited stock.
But things had swung back slightly in renters’ favour as more rental properties started to hit the market.
“It actually got to the point where you felt sorry for people because there was a just a lack of supply and you had 10 to 20 groups turning up to inspections and you had multiple people that would have made great tenants but there was still only one property,” Mr Grgic said.
“It’s come back a little bit but we are still finding good properties, renovated properties and new properties are really catching the attention of prospective tenants.
“Things are very buoyant from a landlord point of view.”
McDonald & Co, Geelong leasing agent Alison Pekin said the drop-off in investors created an environment where landlords could ask for a little bit more rent.
She singled out Armstrong Creek, Highton, Belmont, Grovedale and the inner city as suburbs in hot demand with tenants.
“Come September school holidays, once they are out of the way, you find a lot of people will start looking. Families, in particular, will start moving to Geelong from Melbourne,” she said.
“The CBD is always in high demand, particularly around Christmas time with Barwon Health interns.
“Anything around Highton and Grovedale, with the university, and the Armstrong Creek area — your young families love it.”
Geelong asking rents
Median house price
Median asking rent
Bell Post Hill
St Albans Park