|REIWA welcomes the emergency period for the Residential Tenancies (COVID-19 Response) Act 2020 ending on Sunday 28 March as promised and believes it is a necessary step to help fix Western Australia’s rental shortage. |
REIWA President Damian Collins said the decision by the WA Government to extend the moratorium on evictions and rent price increases in September 2020 had had a debilitating effect on the state’s rental market.
“Since the announcement in September, the Perth vacancy rate has dropped below one per cent – the lowest level we’ve seen in 40 years. There is very little available rental stock on the market and those people who are actively looking for somewhere to rent are finding it very difficult to secure a place to live.
“Thankfully, once the moratorium ends investors will have more incentive to buy property in WA. This should increase the number of properties available to rent and help create a more balanced market,” Mr Collins said.
In the last year, reiwa.com data shows the Perth median weekly rent price has increased from $360 in February 2020 to $400 in February 2021.
“From Sunday, property investors will be able to increase rent prices for the first time in 12 months to reflect the changes that have occurred in the market over the last year. We encourage owners and tenants to be reasonable in rent negotiations and to speak with your property managers about what is a fair outcome for both parties,” Mr Collins said.
“Whilst it is inevitable prices will rise, WA tenants are still paying a lot less overall than their counterparts around the country. In fact, earlier this month the Real Estate Institute of Australia released their December 2020 quarter Housing Affordability Report which revealed WA remained the most affordable place to rent in the country, despite the state experiencing a rental shortage and record low vacancy rates.
“Moving forward, we need to encourage investor activity in WA. It is continuously overlooked how important property investors are to maintaining a healthy, affordable and balanced rental market.“Now that the emergency period is officially coming to an end, investors will be more inclined to buy property in WA again which will help increase housing supply for tenants.”
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