Vacancy rates are falling drastically in regional areas of NSW, Victoria and Queensland as city residents seek a lifestyle away from the coronavirus confines. Eleven regional areas across eastern states recorded rental vacancy rates below 1% in July, shows data from SQM Research.
SQM Research’s Louis Christopher says there has been significant demand for rental property in regional and remote areas since the coronavirus pandemic, causing vacancy rates to fall and creating intense competition for those trying to secure a rental property.
Regional locations with the tightest rental markets include Townsville, Charters Towers, Mount Isa, Wagga Wagga, Griffith, Bendigo, Shepparton, Wodonga and the Sunshine Coast. “It is a landlord’s market in many regional areas,” says Christopher.
But people still want access to amenities, like cafes. Domain senior research analyst Nicola Powell says the pandemic has accelerated the trend of people moving to regional cities, with many renting to ‘try before you buy’. Affordability and living in a smaller population are some of the attractive features of regional living.