WA rental properties leasing two weeks quicker in August: REIWA's Damian Collins

WA rental properties leasing two weeks quicker in August: REIWA's Damian Collins
WA rental properties leasing two weeks quicker in August: REIWA's Damian Collins

EXPERT OBSERVATION

In August, reiwa.com data shows it took a median of 21 days to lease a property in Greater Perth which is 13 days less than the same time last year – making it the quickest time to lease since the construction phase of the last mining boom in February 2015.

Strong demand in the rental market continued into August which recorded improvements to the median rent price, listings volumes and days to lease.

From an individual suburb level, Maddington was the fastest suburb to lease in August, taking a median of seven days to lease, which was closely followed by Armadale with nine days, Coolbellup and Wanneroo with 10 days, and Secret Harbour with 11 days.

The median rent has remained stable at $360, however houses increased $10 per week to $380 and with Perth’s vacancy rate sitting at 1.6 per cent, we can expect to see continued upward pressure on rents in the coming months.

A closer look at the data shows four out of five Perth suburbs experienced an improved or stabilised median rent price, with Perth, Ellenbrook, Hamilton Hill, Bentley and Scarborough the top five performers.

The high demand for rentals has seen rental stock on reiwa.com fall 10 per cent on July, with 3,205 properties for rent on reiwa.com at the end of August and based on present levels of enquiry we expect stock levels to decline further in September.

Feedback from our members on the ground is that there is still only a limited number of investors in the market looking to buy investment property.

It’s important that we return confidence to investors and one way the State Government can lead is to significantly reduce the number of properties subject to the residential tenancies COVID-19 legislation. Unless we get investors confident enough to get into the market, the rental shortage will only get worse.

Perth residential sales market

CoreLogic’s latest home value index shows dwelling values in Perth stabilised in August.

Although overall prices had remained stable in the Perth region, reiwa.com data shows 45 per cent of suburbs experienced an increase in median sale price.

Kelmscott saw the biggest increase to its median in August with a 5.4 per cent increase to $320,000, which was followed by Riverton (up 3.9 per cent), Duncraig (up 3.7 per cent), Piara Waters (up 3.6 per cent), and Carramar (up 3.4 per cent).

Interestingly, three of the top five suburbs had a median sale price under Perth’s median of $475,000 and suggests people are taking advantage of properties in Perth that are priced at the lower end.

Listings for sale were also down in August with only 10,627 properties for sale on reiwa.com, which is 1.2 per cent lower than July and 23.2 per cent lower than this time last year.

In the last few months, sales activity has been particularly strong due to the various government bonus schemes, so it is only natural as the interest around the stimulus eased, we saw activity in August decrease compared to July.

The suburbs that saw the biggest improvement in sales were Stirling, Shenton Park, Fremantle, Bayswater and Iluka.

It certainly appears that Greater Perth, and in fact a large part of Western Australia, has escaped the COVID-19 induced property slowdown. Given the high levels of demand and limited supply, we may even see prices rise later in 2020.

DAMIEN COLLINS is the REIWA President

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Reiwa rental properties

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