Ray White Gladstone director John Fieldus outside a rental property.
Ray White Gladstone director John Fieldus outside a rental property.

How tight Gladstone’s rental market really is

LIKE all of the Central Queensland coast, Gladstone’s rental market is extremely tight with a less than one per cent vacancy rate, according to the Real Estate Institute of Queensland.

Gladstone REIQ president and Locations Estate Agents director Alicia Williams said with such a low vacancy rate it was rare for a rental property to remain listed for more than 10 days.

“The REIQ takes data from all the different agencies within a region and collates that,” she said.

“We are seeing very very tight rental vacancy rates.

“There has been a few times our agency, Locations, has seen a vacancy rate of zero per cent vacancy and at the moment it is sitting below one per cent.”

Ms Williams said the rental market ha an advertised vacancy rate and a true vacancy rate.

“Advertised vacancy is what each agency is advertising for rent at the moment,” she said.

“But that doesn’t necessarily mean it's a true vacancy, because a lot of those properties have someone already in them, or are tenanted until a period of time.

“As much as there is not a lot of rental stock available there is also a bit of turnover there too.”

Rental properties in the Gladstone region were being snapped up very quickly, Ms Williams said.

“The days on market available for rental vacancies are very, very low,” she said.

“It is probably between five and 10 days to allow for cleaning and other things to be done.”

REIQ Gladstone president and Locations Estate Agents principal Alicia Williams.
REIQ Gladstone president and Locations Estate Agents principal Alicia Williams.

Ray White Gladstone director John Fieldus said his agency was seeing extreme demand for rental properties in the port city and the region.

“We are seeing a few more vacancies come in because we are heading into Christmas, but that happens every year,” he said.

“Our vacancy rate for the entire of this year has not been over one per cent.

“Even during the tough months of April and May, it never went over one per cent.

“At one per cent, the industry sees that as a critical shortage.

“But right up and down coastal regional Queensland the vacancy rate is under one per cent.”

The tight market has lead to rental stress for some locals and people wanting to move to Gladstone.

“If you ask any punter, there is an air of concern sometimes in finding a roof to put over their head,” Mr Fieldus said.

Mr Fieldus said there were a few factors contributing to the tight rental market.

“There are a few landlords that are exiting, they are finding they can achieve a (sale) price to get out of the investment,” he said.

“We are seeing that with our portfolio, there is a reasonable amount of it selling every month, which makes the rental market smaller.

“The other thing is there has been no development of investment or rental property here since about 2013.

“Gladstone being an itinerant city, 40 per cent of all properties in Gladstone are rentals.”

Last month Mr Fieldus said they had 142 applications for 42 properties to rent, but turnover had slowed due to COVID.

“So that was 100 applicants who missed out,” he said

“Sixty per cent of our rent roll turns over every year.

“We’ve got 1150 managements, so that’s a big chunk of the market.

“One thing I have seen through COVID is there is less dynamic to move at the moment, people are staying put.”

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