The hourly wage you need to rent in every city in Australia

Written by in ACT on July 25, 2018

With the cost of rent taking an ever-increasing chunk of the average tenant’s budget, what do you need to be earning to make renting in our capital cities affordable?

We’ve checked out the city-wide median rent data from CoreLogic, to give you an idea of the hourly wage you’ll need to be bringing in – with affordability defined as rental payments not exceeding 30 per cent of the tenant’s gross weekly pay.

The hourly wage required has been calculated assuming a 37.5 hour working week, and we’ve included some of the more ritzy suburbs and a few budget-friendly options for those earning significantly more or less.

Hand and money staircase isolated on white

Sydney – $51 per hour

With a median weekly rent of $583, you’ll need to be earning at least $51 per hour to make living in Sydney affordable. Units in Cabramatta West are more affordable, at just $280 per week, while at the pricey end of town you’ll be forking out a whopping $1,990 per week to live in Bellevue Hill.

Melbourne – $39 per hour

To comfortably afford the weekly median rent of $447 in Melbourne, you’ll need to look for a job that pays at least $39 per hour. If you’re rolling in cash, a house in Toorak for $1,200 per week would be the envy of all your friends, but if you’re more concerned with saving your pennies, try a unit Campbellfield – the median rent is a mere $250 a week here.

Brisbane – $38 per hour

The citywide median rent for Brisbane is $435 per week, which should fit in your budget if you’re making $38 per hour. Not quite earning that figure yet? A house on Russell Island could still be within your means – the median rent there is just $250 per week. When you finally score that promotion you’ve been working hard for, you could move to New Farm, where the median rent is $742 a week.

Adelaide – $33 per hour

An income of $33 per hour is what you’ll need to earn to make Adelaide’s median rent of $375 per week affordable, but if you’d prefer to reside in classy Unley Park you might need to take on a side hustle, as you’ll be coughing up around $790 a week. At the other end of the spectrum, units in Elizabeth Grove currently have a median weekly rent of $161, which is much more budget-friendly.

Perth median – $33 per hour

If you’re earning at least $33 per hour you should have no trouble finding a suitable rental property in Perth, where the median rent is $377 per week. If you don’t think your budget will stretch quite that far, try Shoalwater, where the median is just $200 a week. If you’re rolling in cash, you could be living in a gorgeous property in Peppermint Grove for $850 per week.

Hobart – $37 per hour

You’ll need to be earning around $37 per hour to rent the average house in Hobart, with recent property price growth pushing the median rent for the city up to $418 per week. Hobart’s high-rolling renters are paying $600 per week to lease a property in posh Battery Point, but if that’s out of your price range, you could try a unit in Bridgewater, where the median rent is just $230 per week.

Canberra – $47 per hour

In our nations’ capital, the median rent is $536 per week – certainly affordable if you’re pulling in a politician’s salary, but if you’re an average Joe you’ll need a job paying at least $47 per hour. Oaks Estate is one of the cheaper suburbs, with median rents sitting at $270 per week for units, or if you manage to snare a Government job you could even rent a house in Forrest, where the median is a huge $1,247 per week!

Darwin median rent – $41 per hour

The median weekly rent across Darwin is $464 per week, which is a comfortable sum if you’re earning around $41 per hour. If you’ve got deeper pockets, Fannie Bay has some stunning properties and a median rent of $800 per week, while for those with limited funds Karama has an affordable median weekly rent of $310.