Perth hits rental crisis as vacancy rate plummets below one per cent

Perths residential vacancy rate continues to rapidly decline,fallingto 0.96per centwhich isthe lowestit has been in 13 years,and only thethirdtime in 40 years it has dropped belowone per cent.

REIWA President Damian Collins saidthe vacancy rate is tracking to potentially reach the lowest we haveseenwhichwas 0.8 per cent inMarch2007.

Withrental listings in Perth falling eight per cent to 2,926 over the month,wehavecertainlyhit a rental crisis where tenants looking for a rental will potentially find themselvesunable to find ahome, Mr Collins said.

In addition, the reduced supply is puttingupwardpressure on rentswithproperty managerson the ground finding increasesin rentare occurringon new leases,as prospective tenants are in competitionwith each othertosecure the limited supply.

Typically,during this time, we would see investors enter the market and increasestock levels howeverwe are seeing low levelsof investor activity.If investors are not encouraged back into the market, then the rentalcrisiswill only get worse.

Western Australia hasapproximately17 per centof properties purchased byinvestors, whereaswe would normally expect to see investors buying 30per centor more of the available properties. At the same time,we still have investors exiting the market, meaning the supply of rental properties is not sufficient to keep up with demand,Mr Collins said.

To entice investors back into the marketand increase stock levels,we need to ensure that the emergencyresidentialtenancy laws are removed in March 2021. The government needs to send a clear signal to the market that they have no intention of extending the legislation further if we remain relatively COVID-19 free. Otherwise investors will continue to sit on their hands and make a bad situation even worse.

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