Every year, Canberra’s population grows, with approximately 10,000 people choosing to call the Nation’s Capital home in 2020 alone. People of all ages and professions move to Canberra every year for study or job opportunities, or to raise a family. Due to this population growth, the rental market must expand and shift to accommodate these new arrivals. We’ve broken down the timeline of events that we see occurring consistently in the rental market each year.
New year, new rental.
Once the Christmas break is over, the rental market hits the ground running in early January as many public service positions, contracts and defence force positions commence. Over the years, we’ve also seen savvy tenants try to secure properties before the Christmas break.
During this period, we can see up to 30+ prospective tenants attend each open home, and rent prices increase due to the supply and demand of available properties.
January is also a time when we see many investors move from Canberra to commence interstate or overseas postings with Defence/Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, which brings properties back onto the market to meet the high demand.
Towards the end of January and leading into February, graduates and university students move to Canberra and enter the rental market. We find the areas that do particularly well are those close to the University of Canberra and the Australian National University.
During this time, we also see group tenancy (or co-tenants) applications rise for larger homes in Canberra’s north, with graduates preferring to reside closer to the parliamentary circle.
The quieter period
As the temperature starts to soften in March, so does the ACT rental market. This continues into April and May.
June sees the market at its lowest point; however, there can be a slight bump towards the end of the month with the end of the financial year.
During this time, businesses and departments often send staff to other locations to exhaust their yearly budget, which can mean a slight rise as these departures cause new properties to appear on the rental market.
Spring into action
As the weather begins to turn and Canberra defrosts from winter, the rental market also springs into action and increases momentum.
It is a popular time to sell your property, and we see more becoming available for lease as the investors hit the market.
We also find that some homeowners are not in a position to move into their home straight away or choose to seek the benefit at tax time by offering their newly purchased home to the rental market for a year while they make preparations to renovate or move into at a later date.
The market builds as we move into the warmer months of the year, with November and December popular months for those savvy prospective tenants looking to beat the rental rush of January.
At this time, some applicants are even willing to secure a rental property and pay an additional month to ensure they have a property before the new year.
In the two weeks leading into Christmas, the market enters the holiday season.
This is the ideal time for renters who have been issued with their eight-week notice to secure a property as renters focus on their holiday destinations and gatherings.
Once Christmas has passed, and people return home in the new year, we reach peak time for the rental market all over again.
Navigating the ups and downs of the Canberra rental market can be difficult without the knowledge and experience of a local agent.