If you’re looking for a new rental property now could be the time to upgrade to that waterfront view, with prices across the city suffering from a ‘covid-crunch’. @RuthWW #9News pic.twitter.com/MQ7yM4Gu99
— Nine News Sydney (@9NewsSyd) May 24, 2020
Speaking to Nine News, SQM Research’s managing director, Louis Christopher, describes Sydney’s rental market as “very much a tenants market right now, it’s probably the biggest tenants market I’ve seen in my last 20-years”.
This comes as Sydney’s rents are reportedly plummeting across the city.
Indeed, according to SQM, Sydney’s vacancy rate hit a record high 3.9% in April:
With the increase in vacancies concentrated in inner-Sydney, which is ground zero for both Airbnbs and international students:
Earlier this month, Louis Christopher gave the following warning:
This is one of the largest one month rises ever recorded on our vacancy rates series. The blow out in rental vacancy rates for the major CBDs suggests a mass exodus of tenants occurred over the course of March and April. This might be attributed to the significant loss in employment in our CBDs plus the drop off in international students. We are well aware of a surge in short term accommodation now being advertised for long term leasing.
The question now begs is how long will we see such high rental vacancies? If it is sustained throughout the course of the year, then we can expect far deeper falls in rents which will be good news for tenants but a disaster for landlords. There will also be economic consequences with further sharp falls in building approvals likely; thereby risking a major depression in our residential construction sector as well as the rather obvious risks for housing prices.
Sydney’s rental market was already falling pre-COVID-19, down 1.0% in the year to March, according to the ABS:
Now it is facing severe falls.