Property leasing data released by Rent.com.au for the January to March quarter (Q1 2019) illustrates the shift in Australian median rental property prices (both metro and regional), rental affordability (the median room price metric) and the price of walkability in each state and territory capital.

Q1 Highlights:

  • Hobart was the best performing housing market over the last quarter, with median rents up 4.6% to $450/w
  • Apartment prices remained relatively stable in the latest report, with no change recorded nationally and price rises only recorded in Sydney and Melbourne, up 1.9% and 2.4% respectively.
  • Perth and Adelaide remain the only two capitals with median house rents under $400/week.

How the states and territories compared in Q1 2019

Metro areaApartments% changeHouses% change
SYDNEY$5301.90%$6000%
MELBOURNE$4202.40%$4300%
BRISBANE$4000%$4300%
PERTH$3200%$3701.30%
ADELAIDE$3000%$3800%
HOBART$365-4.50%$4504.60%
DARWIN$340-2.80%$4802.10%
CANBERRA$450-2.10%$5501.80%
National median$4500%$4502.20%

Price trends

Median rents.

Apartment and house rents have remained relatively stable quarter-on-quarter, according to a new report from Australia’s no. 1 website dedicated to rental property, Rent.com.au. But renting a house in half of the country’s state and territory capitals has become slightly more expensive, up 2.2% in the January to March period (Q1) from Q4 2018.

“We’ve just come through one of the busiest periods of the year (January/February), so areas around the country that are smaller and/or have limited property supply generally are going to be especially tight right now,” Rent.com.au CEO Greg Bader said.

RENT’s latest report showed no real change in apartment pricing quarter-on-quarter, with median rents stable in Q1 2019 nationally. Houses, however, experienced some upward movement, jumping 2.2% by the end of the quarter across the country. Median rents climbed in four of the eight capital cities in Q1, including Hobart (up 4.6% to $450/week), Darwin (up 2.1% to $480/week), Canberra (up 1.8% to $550/week) and Perth (jumping 1.3% to $370/week).

Price per room.

Considering RENT’s price per room metric, Hobart experienced the most movement in room prices in the first quarter of 2019. The TAS capital saw an 8.4% rise in the price per room for apartments, now $225/week. In fact, all but one state (Brisbane) recorded an increase in apartment price per room, bringing the national median to $275/week, up 5.8% from Q4 2018. Houses also experienced growth, but to a lesser extent, climbing $147/week (up 2.5%) in Q1.

Nationally, the cost of renting a room was highest – unsurprisingly perhaps – in Sydney at $325/week in an apartment. In Q1, the cheapest room prices could be found in Perth, a median $116/week.

Apartment, House and National Price per Room

Metro areaApartments% change from QoQHouses% change QoQPrice per room (national)% change QoQ
National$2755.80%$1472.50%$1933.50%
SYDNEY$3258.30%$2001.50%$2732.50%
MELBOURNE$2604%$1401.80%$1834.70%
BRISBANE$2250%$1371.50%$1664.10%
PERTH$1963.50%$1160%$1261.30%
ADELAIDE$1601.60%$1302.60%$1383.70%
HOBART$2258.40%$1655.30%$1778.60%
DARWIN$1703%$143-0.90%$1500%
CANBERRA$3354.70%$1761.90%$2153.20%
Q1 2019 - Median rent (apartments v houses) and price per room: How the states and territories compared in Q1 2019 SOURCE: RENT.COM.AU © 2019

Regional rents.

Australia’s regional median rents were unmoved quarter-on-quarter. The national median remained at $370/week where it has been since Q4 2018 after only an incremental rise from $360/week.

In total, three states recorded an increase in rents in Q1. In Victoria, regional median rents climbed 3.3% to $310/week and further ahead in South Australia, up 3.8% to $270/week. Tasmania also saw a lift, up 1.7% to $300/week. Northern Territory, however, was down 2.2% QoQ to $440/week.

State/TerritoryQ4 2018Q1 2019% change
National median$370$3700%
NSW$400$4000%
VIC$300$3103.30%
QLD$370$3700%
WA$340$3400%
SA$260$2703.80%
TAS$295$3001.70%
NT$450$440-2.20%
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% change between Q4 2018 and Q1 2019 SOURCE: RENT.COM.AU © 2019

Days on market.

The most noticeable shift in days on market quarter-on-quarter was in Hobart apartments, which took 30% longer on average to lease, with this property type on market 16 days from 12.4 days in Q4 2018.

Conversely, apartments in Brisbane were off market 11% faster this quarter – just 21 days on average, down from 23 days in Q4. Darwin apartments were on market longest of all capital cities (and property types), with owners facing around 39 days to lease in Q4.

Metro areaAPARTMENTS days on market% change from Q4 2018% change from Q1 2018HOUSES days on market% change from Q4 2018% change from Q1 2018
SYDNEY27 days7% slower6.4% faster29 days15% slower1.8% slower
MELBOURNE21 days1% faster6.5% faster26 days17% slower4.3% faster
BRISBANE21 days11% faster1.4% slower22 days0%1.9% faster
PERTH32 days8% faster7.3% faster29 days3% faster3.6% slower
ADELAIDE24 days10% slower19.9% faster21 daysNo change0.4% faster
HOBART16 days30% slower5.2% faster15 days8% slower12.2% faster
DARWIN39 days7% faster0.1% faster32 days3% faster10% faster
CANBERRA17 days12% slower6.3% slower19 days21% slower6.6% slower
% change in no. days on market (Apartments v Houses) SOURCE: RENT.COM.AU © 2019

Walk Score® – The price of walkability

Median Rent

Rent.com.au compared its Walk Score® data to its median rent price to identify price trends in areas with varying levels of walkability in Q1 2019. Renters seeking bargain accommodation would have found the most affordable Walker’s Paradise apartments in Tasmania, according to the Q4 data. Walker’s Paradise apartments cost an average of $380/week to rent in TAS. Next most walkable (and affordable) was Western Australia at $390/week.

Walk ScoreNSWVICQLDWASATASNTACT
Car Dependent$340$310$295$290$255$260$360$390
Somewhat Walkable$440$340$330$290$275$250$370$417
Very Walkable$490$380$375$320$295$320$440$480
Walker’s Paradise$570$470$430$390$410$380$430$480
APARTMENTS: Median Rent meets Walkability in Q1 2019

The most affordable median rent for a Walker’s Paradise house in Q4 was $450/week in South Australia. Western Australia and Tasmania followed close behind ($470/week), followed by Queensland ($475/week). Houses in New South Wales remained priciest, topping the list at $795/week for a Walker’s Paradise home.

Walk ScoreNSWVICQLDWASATASNTACT
Car Dependent$450$380$385$350$320$320$490$515
Somewhat Walkable$460$400$400$360$360$320$470$520
Very Walkable$550$450$420$390$395$395$400$510
Walker’s Paradise$795$620$475$470$450$470$510$550
HOUSES: Median Rent meets Walkability in Q1 2019

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