National vacancy rates creep upwards

by Julia Corderoy24 Aug 2016
National vacancy rates lifted slightly in July causing year-on-year vacancy rates to climb one percentage point from last year.

Figures released by SQM Research recorded a national vacancy rate of 2.5% in July,  and 79,300 vacancies. 

Perth recorded the largest monthly rise, with vacancies increasing by 0.2 percentage points during the month of July. On a year-on-year basis, Perth vacancies have climbed an alarming 1.4%, with vacancies climbing to 10,738.

In contrast, yearly falls were recorded for Canberra, Darwin, Hobart and Melbourne, with Canberra vacancies decreasing 0.8% compared to this time last year. Both Hobart and Darwin recorded a yearly fall of 0.4 percentage points. Melbourne soon followed with a yearly fall of 0.3 percentage points.

Sydney’s vacancy rate lifted slightly over the year, by 0.1% to be 1.9% at the end of July 2016. 

SQM Research managing director, Louis Christopher, said he expects national vacancy rates to continue to creep upwards.

“Overall, vacancy rates remain steady for the major capital cities. Perth continues to be the ongoing exception with further increases in vacancies this month as the mining downturn continues to hit the economy hard,” Christopher said. 

“Looking forward, I believe the national vacancy rate will continue to creep upwards. Melbourne may start to record higher vacancies next year under the weight of completed apartment developments; but for now Melbourne remains a landlord's market. Sydney is unlikely to record such a surge in vacancies as we believe the city's population expansion is going to absorb much of the new stock.”