The May REIV rental market statistics show a slight contraction in the rental vacancy rate and increase in median rent in Melbourne.
The vacancy rate fell from 3.2 per cent in April to 2.8 per cent in May and there was an increase in the weekly rent for a house from $382 to $390. These are minor variations given that the vacancy rate has been around 3 per cent throughout this year and the median rent has also been around $390.
High vacancy rate a regular feature
From a medium term perspective there is no doubt that government policies designed to increase the supply of dwellings is having an impact with a persistently high vacancy rate now being a regular feature.
Within the metropolitan area vacancies remain high in the inner city where 3.9 per cent of rental homes were vacant compared to 4.4 per cent last month. The middle suburbs remained reasonably stable at 3 per cent and there was a contraction in the outer suburbs where the vacancy rate dropped from 2.8 to 2.2 per cent.
Whilst rents remain broadly consistent there is some pressure evident in the inner suburbs for 3 bedroom houses and more broadly in the metropolitan area for 1 or 2 bedroom units. In each of these cases the median rents rose.
Regional Victoria remains stable
The vacancy rate rose in regional Victoria from 3.3 to 4.1 per cent with the most significant change being in Geelong where the vacancy rate rose from 4.4 to 6.7 per cent. In Bendigo the vacancy rate remained stable at 3.1 per cent and it rose in Ballarat from 2.2 to 2.7 per cent. Median rents again remained stable in regional Victoria.