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Sydney vacancies below national average

By Louise Morrin

Demand for rental properties in Carlton is likely to be particularly high at the moment, as the latest figures point to an increasingly tight market across Sydney. SQM Research released vacancy rate data for June, which pointed to mixed conditions throughout the country.

While the national vacancy rate stood at 2.4 per cent, Sydney's was significantly lower at 1.8 per cent. This made it the second-lowest result in the country, ranking only behind Hobart on 1.5 per cent.

Managing director of SQM Research Louis Christopher said: "Overall vacancy rates were steady over the month of June. The level of vacancy rates (at 2.4 per cent) is marginally favouring tenants."

The other good news for investors in the New South Wales capital is that vacancies have remained relatively steady over recent months. Some cities have seen considerable fluctuations, while others have stayed on a relatively even keel.

Sydney falls into the latter category, as its vacancy rate was unchanged from May and just 0.1 per cent lower than June 2014.

Meanwhile, asking rents have also increased in the Harbour City. During the week to July 12, house rents were 3.2 per cent higher than 12 months previously, while the cost of renting units in Sydney was up 1.2 per cent.

In recent weeks, the Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed that Sydney was leading the pack in terms of national residential property price rises. The Residential Property Price Index (RPPI) was up 3.1 per cent over the three months to March this year, and 13.1 per cent higher than the March quarter of 2014.

Established house prices in the city increased 3.8 per cent, while the price of attached dwellings were up 2.2 per cent.

Increases in the RPPI were less pronounced in other capitals, with Canberra registering the next highest increase at 1.1 per cent.

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