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Rent crisis: Capital city most affordable for renters

The rental crisis has seen available properties under $400 a week halve since last year.

A sign out the front of a home that was for rent but has a sticker on it to indicate it has been leased and the roofs of houses and the CBD in the background.
Aussie renters have limited options for affordable housing. (Source: Getty)

Aussie renters are feeling the pain, with available properties under $400 a week falling to their lowest level since late 2018.

The rising cost of living and a lack of rental supply have pushed rental prices higher, according to the new data from PropTrack.

In February 2022, 32.8 per cent of all properties listed for rent in Australia were under $400 per week. This has now fallen to just 17.6 per cent.

Over the past year, the share of houses for rent under $400 per week has fallen from 25.2 per cent to 13.6 per cent, while for units it has dropped from 38.6 per cent to 22.1 per cent.

Regional areas saw larger percentage point falls in the share of listings under $400 per week throughout the pandemic, when Aussies were flocking out of the capital cities. However, the decline has been much larger in capital cities over the past year as demand for rentals shifted back.

The share of total rental listings under $400 per week has halved over the past year in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Canberra and regional WA.

Sydney, the ACT and Darwin all have the lowest share, with less than 9 per cent of listings in each city under $400 per week. In the ACT, just 1.9 per cent of all rental listings come in under the $400 price point.

“With demand for rentals intensifying, we see no reprieve for tenants in the coming months,” the PropTrack report said.

“The fall in the availability of more affordable rentals and the surging competition for rental stock is creating challenges for those on lower incomes or government support payments as they try to source increasingly scarce rental accommodation.”

Which capital city has the most affordable rental options?

Melbourne has the most available properties under $400 a week, but that number is still down by around half since this time last year.

Here is the percentage of properties in each capital city that are available for rent for under $400:

  1. Melbourne - 20 per cent

  2. Adelaide - 18.3 per cent

  3. Perth - 15.4 per cent

  4. Brisbane - 13 per cent

  5. Hobart - 12 per cent

  6. Darwin - 8.8 per cent

  7. Sydney - 7.8 per cent

  8. Canberra - 1.9 per cent

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