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State of Markets – ACT December 2011

By Phillip Tarrant

Essential information, plus expert insight on what is shaping the national property market...

AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY

Fast Figures

  • $600,000 – median unit price in Barton, ACT
  • 4.86% – average gross rental yield for Canberra houses
  • 10.93% - average annual growth for Canberra units

Canberra records lowest vacancy rate
The slump in buyer confidence helped keep the national vacancy rate at record low levels in September, with Canberra recording the lowest rate in the state capitals, SQM Research has found.

Canberra recorded the nation’s tightest rental market at 0.7 per cent.

The national vacancy rate has hovered around the 1.8 to 1.9 per cent level for several months, possibly an indirect result of lack of buyer interest in the housing sales market, according to SQM Research’s Louis Christopher.

“Vacancy rates nationwide have been in a fixed range for a long time now and I do not anticipate a move one way or the other for the foreseeable future,” Mr Christopher said.

In September, total vacancies rose 0.1 per cent to a total 48,179 vacancies nationally.

Sydney's vacancy rate remained steady in September, at 1.4 per cent; Brisbane edged 0.1 per cent higher on-month to two per cent; Adelaide rose 0.1 per cent to 1.7 per cent; Perth fell 0.1 per cent from August to 0.9 per cent; Hobart rose 0.2 per cent to 2.1 per cent; and Darwin remained steady at 0.9 per cent.

SQM calculates vacancies based on online rental listings advertised for three weeks or more, compared with the total number of established rental properties.

Rental price gap narrows in capital
Advertised rents for Canberra’s units and houses are getting closer as renters opt for lifestyle over land, according to Australian Property Monitors (APM).

APM statistics show the gap between median asking rents for houses and units has fallen to $35, with median weekly rents of $465 and $430 respectively.

Increased rental prices indicate increased demand from discontented first home buyers entering the rental market in search of affordable accommodation, APM senior economist Andrew Wilson said.

“Overall demand for units, for both lifestyle and affordability reasons, continues to be greater than the demand for more expensive and generally outer suburban houses,'' he said.

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Top Suburbs

Highest annual price growth - click a suburb below to view full profile data:
1.
FAIRLIGHT 46.02%
2.
CASUARINA 44.36%
3.
THE ENTRANCE NORTH 41.09%
4.
ULTIMO 40.67%
5.
LAVENDER BAY 40.2%