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Rental Pain Index March 2024

Rental Pain Index March 2024

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Australian Rental Market: Executive Summary March 2024

The March 2024 Executive Summary for the Australian rental market reveals a complex landscape marked by rental affordability and availability issues, with significant variances across states. This analysis, incorporating state averages and insights into the top 25 suburb areas nationally, underscores critical stress points in the rental sector.

Rental Stress Across States

Western Australia now stands out with the highest levels of rental stress, indicated by an unprecedented 12-month rental increase of 16%. This surge has pushed rental affordability to consume 30.32% of income, alongside a low average vacancy rate of 1.13%, resulting in a Rental Pain Index (RPI) score of 84.29, the highest across the states.

Queensland and South Australia closely follow, with RPI scores of 82.63 and 82.57, respectively. Both states have witnessed significant rental price increases of over 9.92% and face low vacancy rates, further complicating the challenge of securing affordable housing. Queensland, in particular, sees rent consuming 31.87% of income, highlighting a critical affordability issue.

Conversely, the Australian Capital Territory presents a more optimistic scenario, albeit with its challenges. A slight decrease in rental vacancy rates (-0.96%) and the lowest RPI of 47.64 suggest a somewhat less severe situation for renters in specific suburb areas.

National Perspective and Suburb Analysis

The national overview paints a grim picture of an average rental increase of 10.56%, necessitating that 30.59% of income be dedicated to rent, against a backdrop of a national vacancy rate of 1.41%. This situation has escalated the national RPI to 78.62, symbolising widespread rental stress.

An analysis of the top 25 suburb areas exacerbates these concerns, with some areas in NSW, VIC, QLD, and WA reaching the maximum RPI score of 100. This reflects an acute affordability crisis, where rental affordability rates stretch up to 52% of income in some areas, and near-zero vacancy rates highlight a critical shortage of available housing.

Conclusion and Call to Action

In summary, the March 2024 rental market report illustrates a landscape of heightened rental stress and affordability challenges, necessitating urgent action from policymakers to address the burgeoning crisis across Australia. The widening gap between housing affordability and availability calls for a multi-pronged approach, including reevaluating urban planning, addressing land supply constraints, and fostering income growth. This report serves as an urgent wake-up call, emphasising the need for innovative solutions to ensure the Australian housing market remains a realm of opportunity, not a bastion of exclusivity.



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