Time to bring out the tent as vacancy rate hits record in this Queensland tourism hotspot

If youre trying to rent a home in this Queensland location, you may as well pitch a tent while you wait, with vacancy rates hitting their lowest level on record.

But on the flip side, finding a place to call home in the inner city has got somewhat better, with the vacancy rate rising within 5 kilometres of the central business district.

Latest Real Estate Institute of Queensland vacancy data for the September quarter found Noosa hit its narrowest level on record of just 0.9 per cent of rental properties vacant – a feat matched by just one other, very different, part of the state.

Noosa has become increasingly popular with holiday-makers as the Australian dollar began its drop, with its vacancy rate on a downward trend since June last year – apart from a surprise jump to 2.2 per cent in the June quarter 2015.

Only one other part of Queensland matched that 0.9 per cent vacancy rate – Caloundra – which is also beachside, but targets a different market of families and commuters.

REIQ chief executive Antonia Mercorella said there was limited inventory in both areas.

Were seeing strong demand for rental properties in these areas and while a small level of this demand is seasonal, it does mean good news for investors who have certainty around finding tenants for their properties, she said.

In the Queensland capital, the vacancy rate was sitting on its long-term trend level of 2.8 per cent which REIQ considered healthy.

Despite some commentators who suggest that we are facing a glut the data tells a different story, Ms Mercorella said.

The capitals inner-city – made up of areas within 5 kilometres of the CBD – showed the highest vacancy rate in Greater Brisbane of 3.3 per cent, up from 3 per cent in the June quarter. Areas from 5km to 20km from the CBD were showing a steady vacancy rate of 2.4 per cent, while the fringe was now below the 2 per cent mark including Brisbane surrounds (1.7 per cent), Ipswich City (1.3 per cent), Logan City (1.9 per cent), Moreton Bay (1.6 per cent), Caboolture (1.6 per cent) and Pine Rivers (1.3 per cent).

New apartments in Brisbane are reportedly being snapped up by investors and owner-occupiers, although the vacancy rate softened slightly, Ms Mercorella said.

She said some local agents were offering rental incentives to secure a tenant.

Asking rental prices are also said to be softening in response to the level of supply, however it is evident that the tenant demand is still there.

There were signs of pain emerging out of the resource sector downturn, with the Maranoa and Murweh local government areas posting the highest regional vacancy rate of 14.5 per cent. The areas include Roma, Surat, Mitchell and Charleville.

Real estate investors in Gladstone would also be treading carefully with the rental market softening in the September quarter when the vacancy rate rose from 5.2 per cent to 7.1 per cent.

Ms Mercorella was hopeful that potential projects in the area such as the Eden Bann Weir and the Gladstone to Fitzroy River pipeline would boost employment and the property market there next year.

Source: News dot com dot au