SQM: Melbourne’s rental market swamped with vacant properties

SQM Research has released its rental vacancy data for October, which reported a small rise in the national vacancy rate to 2.1% from 2.0%:

The increase was driven by Melbourne, whose vacancy rate soared by 0.6% to 4.4%:

Sydney’s vacancy rate is also elevated at 3.6%, whereas vacancies are fairly tight everywhere else.

SQM’s asking rents data show similar trends, with Sydney and Melbourne recording heavy falls year-on-year, whereas rises have been recorded across most other jurisdictions:

According to SQM:

Louis Christopher, Managing Director of SQM Research said, “Rental vacancy rates continue to remain elevated in our larger capital cities. While regional locations are still recording near zero rental vacancies. I believe the ongoing phenomenon, which started on the outset of Covid-19 lockdowns will in part reverse out once Coronavirus is behind us. But we are not there yet and there is also a large possibility that there will only be a part reversal as I believe many have used Coronavirus as a catalyst for a longer-term lifestyle change.”

Meanwhile rents continue to plummet on our inner-city locations. For those who will be coming back to inner city living, there are some bargains to be had”…

Melbourne continues to have the highest vacancy rate in the nation with an additional 3,863 vacant properties in October. The surplus of rental property is most acute in the Melbourne CBD where vacancy rates stand at 10.6%.

SQM’s separate weekly rental listings data also shows massive apartment oversupply across both Sydney and Melbourne:

Apartment oversupply should continue to balloon owing to collapsing immigration and lower international student numbers.

Unconventional Economist


  1. Apartment market in Melbourne is insane but provides an amazing insight into the minds of sellers – there are now literally hundreds of places for sale $350k and below. Yet you will see the exact same apartments listed for $600k – more !

    People just list for the amount of money they need rather than any basis in reality or demand.

    In some cases they are literally in the same building.

    I suspect there are a lot of people who lived in apartments and have decided to build their dream tree change house – and are now needing to sell to finalize.

    Incoming pain…..3.2.1

    • “People just list for the amount of money they need rather than any basis in reality or demand.”

      This is a trait that is peculiar to the strayan psyche — it’s the same with cars and other items too. Literally.No.Clue.

  2. pfh007.comMEMBER

    2.1% with the international borders locked tight?

    The message is clear we need to build baby build.

    4.4% in Melbourne and tight every where else simply confirms that everybody is moving interstate to get away from Dan!

    Or perhaps just his army of apologists.

    • happy valleyMEMBER

      Yep – opening the international borders to warm bodies will fix it and the RBA happy clappies who now say their focus is unemployment are all for border opening. Pfft.

      • the borders would be open already if it were not for all them pesky Aussies who had been living o.s. and now need repatriating… total thorn in the side of mass-immigration re-start!!

        • happy valleyMEMBER

          Yeah – how unpatriotic are those pesky Strayan living o/s, denying us the opportunity of a torrent of fresh warm foreign bodies ready for the housing price bubble and wage slavery ponzi of happy clappy ScoMo?

    • Don’t forget about tenant eviction moratoriums. Land lords cannot kick them out. Lol, renters are having a field day.

      Land lord: Can you please pay this week.
      Tenant: F off mate Corona virus bro.
      Land lord: Sorry to bother you.
      Landlord to bank: Can I deffer again, pretty please.
      Greedy Bastards: Sure you can. (Banks are happy to have their claws into you for longer)

      It will be interesting when this cycle ends, could get real messy.

  3. PaperRooDogMEMBER

    Yes, will be interesting how many students return home this year when their courses end… I actually think it may be less than normal as we have low COVID cases and the flights are expensive so many will stay if they can earn some money to get by.

  4. ‘Louis Christopher, Managing Director of SQM Research said … For those who will be coming back to inner city living, there are some bargains to be had’

    Lmao sure there is spruikbot.