Average Rental Prices by Capital Cities in Australia

It crossed my mind the other day that I have written quite a few articles about the cost of buying a house in Australia, but I’ve never written one about the cost of renting.

for-rent-signI say ‘crossed my mind’, that’s not really what happened, more thrust into it by the headlines I’ve been reading over the last few months. Like…

  • Renting: Weekly rental prices in Australian capital cities flat; could fall – March 2016
  • Rental rates across Australia are falling at the fastest pace on record – July 2016
  • The cost to rent in Australia is still falling – 7 days ago
  • Rents dropping in most Australian cities – 6 days ago
  • Renting now a whole lot cheaper – 2 days ago

As you can see, lots of people talking about it, so I thought it was about time I did as well.

House rental prices in Australia as at August 2016

rents-chartSource: CoreLogic

As you can see, the information has come from CoreLogic. According to their own website, they are ‘the largest provider of property information, analytics and property-related risk management services in Australia and New Zealand.’

Rents fell by 0.3% in July, and the same again in August of this year. Research analyst Cameron Kusher expects this trend to continue.

As long as wages growth continues to stagnate, coupled with historically high levels of new dwelling construction and slowing population growth, landlords won’t have much scope to increase rents. On the flipside, renters are now in a much better position to negotiate.” he said.

What will you get for your money?

That isn’t so easy to say, each of our capitals are different. The best way to truly find out what you are likely to get for your money from each city is to search the latest available rentals online. You will see a couple of links at the foot of this article to help you do that.

What I think it is fair to say though is that at the above quoted average rental prices, you will get, pretty much, an average house. By that I mean a three or four bedroom house, probably detached and in a nice area.

If you want a unit or an apartment, or you choose to live in an economically challenged area, you will pay less. If you want to live in a bigger house or in a more desirable sought after area, you will pay more.

The rental prices quoted in the chart though are a good indication of the differences from city to city.

Housing availability

You may have noticed one ‘standout’ performance in the above figures, and that’s Hobart where rents have gone up 6.8%. I have read reports of a severe shortage of property for sale in Greater Hobart, I suspect that must also then be the case for rentals.

So, just for a bit of fun, I took a look at availability of rentals in a selection of our capital cities. Cities not covered by this are Sydney and Adelaide. For some reason it was not possible to search for the ‘Greater’ regions in these places, only selected suburbs and postcodes.

I excluded Canberra because the search results always included properties in nearby Queanbeyan. Anybody who has read my page about Canberra, in particular the disgruntled comments by some Canberrans, will know that Queanbeyan is not part of Canberra in any way whatsoever.

Here are the results, as at today’s date.

Greater Melbourne

  • Available for rent: 2146 properties
  • Most expensive rental: $2500 per week
  • Least expensive rental: $330 per week (1 bedroom unit)

Greater Brisbane

  • Available for rent: 7777 properties
  • Most expensive rental: $2950 per week
  • Least expensive rental: $110 per week (room – house share)

Greater Perth

  • Available for rent: 12,785 properties
  • Most expensive rental: $3000 per week
  • Least expensive rental: $70 per week (room – house share)

Greater Hobart

  • Available for rent: 265 properties
  • Most expensive rental: $1000 per week
  • Least expensive rental: $130 per week (1 bed studio)

Greater Darwin

  • Available for rent: 965 properties
  • Most expensive rental: $2000 per week
  • Least expensive rental: $179 per week (room – house share)

These numbers are really quite significant, it’s easy to see why rents are rising in Hobart. It also becomes quite clear why they are falling dramatically in Perth. This is an ever-changing situation though, and if you are planning to move to anywhere in Australia, it would be a good idea to check the latest situation on rentals if you are going to be looking to rent.

You can do that at realestate.com.au

For more on this subject, visit:

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{ 14 comments… add one }
  • Saundra March 5, 2019, 2:54 am |

    Hi Bob
    Apologies if this is covered in another post but I wondered if you could advise on the feasibility of securing a rental accommodation pretty much upon arrival (e.g. within 2 weeks or so). With no rental history in Australia (only in the UK) and without physically being in the country yet, what do you think our chances would be to line up a property to lock in upon arrival? I grew up in Sydney so already have a good idea of where we would like to live, and we have local family that could scout for us before we arrive. But I’m not having much luck getting the attention of real estate agents by email and wondered if the rental market is just too competitive to attempt to sort this out virtually. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    • BobinOz March 5, 2019, 8:55 pm |

      Yes, this can be a problem, trying to secure a rental when you are not yet here. I’m not surprised you are being ignored by the estate agents, they do expect you to physically inspect the property before committing to a lease.

      In fact in some states, not sure about New South Wales, it’s the law, you just can’t rent a place without turning up to actually look at it. I think you may need to ask your friends to help you out on this, and actually go look at these places on your behalf.

      Maybe they could shortlist three or four properties with your guidance, and they could then explain to the estate agent that you want to come on personally see them as soon as you arrive and will make a decision immediately to sign up for one of them.

      There was a time when the rental market was super competitive, but I’m not sure that is any longer the case, given that property prices are plummeting in Sydney and Melbourne at the moment.

      Hope that helps, Bob

      • Saundra March 6, 2019, 2:11 am |

        Thanks so much for the prompt response, Bob. That is extremely helpful advice and likely how we will approach things. Fantastic site btw – we’ve visited countless times on this road moving across and no doubt will continue to do so in the coming months.

        • BobinOz March 8, 2019, 9:46 pm |

          Glad to have helped, and thank you for the kind words, much appreciated.

  • John Paul May 24, 2018, 12:40 am |

    Just in! Hobart is now the most expensive city for tenants. It is getting more expensive in here year after year while people are earning less and less or having no job at all.

    • BobinOz May 25, 2018, 12:51 am |

      Yes, I saw that on the news last night, the newsreader said “…and later we will reveal Australia’s most expensive capital city for rentals.”

      I’m thinking, duh, it’s obviously… Sydney.

      But no, Hobart gets its, but only relative to average earnings which are much lower in Hobart. Average rental in Sydney is $550, in Hobart it’s $420. Still worrying for the people of Hobart though.

  • Belinda January 3, 2017, 2:02 am |

    Hi Bob,
    Our family may be relocating to Hobart from Cape Town.
    I’ve read that schools are zoned and you would only be accepted at a specific school if you reside in the zones area. Do you have any ideas on good schools in Hobart? As well as which areas they are in. We have a 12 yr old who would be starting grade 7 – but I’m also not sure the school grade system is the same as SA?

    • BobinOz January 3, 2017, 9:30 pm |

      I think I need to redirect you to another page Belinda, check out Which school?

      There is a video which will show you how to check out school performances and also lots of more useful links about schools and the school system here at the foot of the page.

      • Belinda January 4, 2017, 5:55 pm |

        Many thanks. Will go have a look.

  • Cindy October 2, 2016, 10:06 am |

    Hi Bob, great site – husband and I would like to buy an investment property somewhere in Australia- we want to positively gear to generate income. What capital City or regional town would have the lowest price to buy but the highest rental return. Thanks again, Cindy

    • BobinOz October 3, 2016, 6:09 pm |

      If only I knew Cindy, if only I knew 🙂

  • Alex September 15, 2016, 1:08 am |

    Hi Bob,
    and once again a very informative post – thanks!
    Very interesting for me as a non-aussie would be what kind of other costs join the rent price per week? Not food and stuff to buy but house-insurance, gas, electricity, water? Maybe you can provide details about your personal situation. What do newbies on the australian rental market have to consider when renting the first appartment/house?

    Thanks in advance!
    All the best from Austria.

    • BobinOz September 15, 2016, 7:35 pm |

      Hi Alex

      Thanks, glad you found it helpful.

      As for those extra household bills, these are all subjects I’ve written about before. If you visit my page called The Cost of Living in Australia of Everything you will see headings for water, electricity and rates and underneath those, links to my articles.

      For people coming to Australia and renting for the first time, my best advice is to get as short a lease as possible, with rentals 12 months is standard, but you can always try to get six months. No harm in asking.

      Alternatively, try and rent somewhere on a more temporary basis, maybe through Airbnb, until you know exactly where you really want to live.

      • Alex September 15, 2016, 9:09 pm |

        Hi Bob, thank you for your immediate response. Wow, very detailled post about all the costs. Thanks a lot!

        Cheers, Alex

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