Victorians escaping coronavirus driving up rental prices
THE rental rumble is on in Darwin, with real estate professionals reporting locals and southerners alike starting to fight for dwindling rental properties.
Raine & Horne general manager Glenn Grantham said his agents were reporting growing competitiveness among both local and visiting rental applicants.
"In one property we had 42 people through, with five applications," he said.
"None of the applications came in at the rental price. It was advertised as $550 per week, the lowest that was offered was $560 and the highest offered $620."
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On realestate.com.au there are 419 properties to rent in the greater Darwin region, with a mere 191 in Darwin City.
Mr Grantham explained houses were the most sought-after but with the declining rate of available properties, he said people were taking whatever they could get.
"One client gave us notice he was going to break his lease," he said.
"Then two weeks later he withdrew that notice because he couldn't find anything as good as he was in, and all for $200 more.
"If you're in a rental right now and you're thinking you're paying too much, think again."
Mr Grantham said another phenomena was that Victorian public servants were joining friends and family renting in Darwin to work from home while enjoying the benefits of the COVID-free NT.
"There's more than 60,000 people that have come into the NT since borders opened, not every one of those are in a caravan," he said.
"They all need somewhere to live. I've heard stories of people working in the public service in Victoria and currently doing so from a bedroom in Alawa because they're not required at their desk."
He said locals and the NT Government should be taking every opportunity to turn these southerners into permanent Territorians.
"We should be showcasing what we've got," he said.
"While they're here let's see if they want to stay.
"There's heaps of opportunity here. When you have a look at it, there's nowhere else in Australia than here to be a first homebuyer."
Originally published as Victorians escaping coronavirus driving up rental prices in Top End