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Rental market tightens in country Victoria

By Staff Reporter
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Vacancies across regional Victoria have dropped half a percentage point in the space of 12 months, according to new data from the Real Estate Institute of Victoria (REIV).

The REIV said rental vacancies remained low and continued to decline in the first three months of this year.

The data showed the state's overall vacancy rate of 2.7 per cent in the March quarter was down slightly from 2.8 per cent in the final three months of last year, and 3.2 per cent a year ago.

Vacancy rates were down in every part of Victoria surveyed by the REIV, except Ballarat and the Central Highlands, where the increase was just 0.2 per cent to 2.2 per cent, which the REIV said is still very low in an area where there has long been a housing shortage.

"This is good news for investors because they are unlikely to face long periods without rental income while properties await tenants," a statement by the institute said.

Rents also continue to show growth across most types of houses and units.

In the March quarter, the median weekly rental for a two-bedroom house was $250, up two per cent on the previous quarter, while three-bedroom houses recorded a $290 a week median rental, unchanged from the previous quarter. They both returned a gross rental yield of 5.2 per cent over the year to March 31.

In the March quarter, the median weekly rent for a three-bedroom unit in regional Victoria was $310, up 1.6 per cent on the December 2013 quarter, and the median rent for a two-bedroom unit of $236 was also slightly higher than in December.

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