Rental rates consolidate in Gladstone, vacancy rates relax

Gladstone Ray White property management and leasing director John Fieldus.
Gladstone Ray White property management and leasing director John Fieldus. Contributed

GLADSTONE Ray White property management and leasing director John Fieldus commenced his real estate career in 1984 at just 17 years of age.

The local agent has a passion for property and has worked for Ray White Gladstone for 24 years, accepting the position of group property manager.

This week John share's his knowledge on rental rates, investment and the current property market in The Observer's Agent Insight.

What's happening with rental rates?

Rental rates in Gladstone have consolidated, we are finding that houses continue to have strong demand particularly in the $400 - $500 per week range, with brand new homes achieving around $600 per week.  

Units are performing well in the lower range of $300 - $400 per week range however with unprecedented development of new units there is evidence in that market that we are in an oversupply situation, given the reduced demand from the company sector.

There are some very good rental deals available at the moment in terms of rate and length of lease, which is terrific for the public.

What's happening with vacancy rates?

Vacancy rates have definitely relaxed over the past six months and the market is in a more balanced situation, for the past four years the Ray White Gladstone has not encountered a vacancy rate in excess of 1% which is quite amazing, however in recent months we have experienced vacancy rates of between 1 and 2%, which is remarkably good.

What style of property would make the ideal investment?

The best performing properties are what I call "the family properties", that is affordable homes in established suburbs that have local shops and schools, Kin Kora and Telina are without doubt the strongest rental suburbs in terms of demand.

A typical home in these suburbs might be a 25 year old high set, which in the current market you can purchase in the mid $300,000s and will rent easily for around $450 - $500 per week, these type of homes are always in demand even when the market relaxes.

If you choose to invest in a unit then the inner city is where the demand is strongest.

What affects are the companies having on the market?

The companies have become more self-sufficient with their housing with the advent of the workers camps, such as the ones on Curtis Island, however they still form around 20% of our tenants.

Most of the companies are renewing their leases however there is and will continue to be a gradual hand-back of those properties, and given that these properties are often premium homes the public are gratefully absorbing these homes.

The unit sector however is not as buoyant as the self-contained properties are not generally in high demand by either the companies, and therefore rental rate adjustments have become necessary to attract the public into this style of property as a more affordable option.