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Brisbane’s high-end rental market has received a January bump, as Sunshine State newcomers look for a place to call home.
Cashed-up home buyers, including sea-changers and returning expats, are picking Brisbane over Sydney and Melbourne to settle, with Queensland named No 1 for interstate migration.
To ensure they are choosing the best suburb to relocate, many are deciding to rent in their desired location before spending on a multi-million-dollar property.
Cohen Handler’s general manager Queensland, Jordan Navybox, says there has been a definite increase in demand during the past eight months. The buyer’s agents recently have found themselves helping more and more high-end clients find a rental property before they choose their dream home.
“I would definitely say there has been an increase in demand since the middle of last year, particularly from expats coming back from overseas and the banking sector,” Navybox says.
“With the interstate migration we are getting in Brisbane, a lot of them will want to rent and get an understanding of the area before buying.
“They will get a lease for six to 12 months to see if they like it before they offload $3 million or $4m into a house.”
A modern, three-storey mansion set in the leafy green streets of the prestigious suburb of Ascot recently disappeared from the classifieds. Haesley Cush, principal of Ray White New Farm, confirms the house has been rented but will not reveal the final agreed weekly price, instead hinting it has not strayed too far from the advertised $5500 a week price tag.
Comparing the location to similar postcodes in the southern states, Navybox says: “That type of property in Sydney would be $15,000-plus per week.
He adds that part of the rental appeal in Brisbane’s luxury stock comes down to value for money.
“In Sydney, inner-suburb properties under $1800 per week are pretty grubby,” Navybox says.
“Realistically, you need to spend over that to get a nice house in Sydney right now.
“So, they come to Brisbane with these budgets of $2000 and $3000 a week and there is a lot of prestige property that can cater for them.”
A commitment of $20,000 may make some eyes water, but it is not a one-off, with many high-end tenants on the lookout for a rental property at this time of year.
Cush is helping a couple with $5000 a week to spend. Instead of jumping straight back into the buying market after selling their multi-million-dollar property, they decided to rent until they find their dream home.
Others are also on the lookout for rentals. The New Farm agency received 254 applications across all rental listings in the first 14 days of the year.
For perspective, the new-year rush is about two-thirds of the total applications the agency received in the last quarter of last year.
“It’s hunting season,” Cush says, laughing. And the Brisbane market is delivering.
A six-bedroom federation-style home at Moreton Street in New Farm is listed for $3300 a week. The home is an entertainer’s delight, featuring a deck that wraps the white front facade of the house. It also has a large pool and back yard.
It’s not only houses proving popular with renters. A riverfront apartment in Kangaroo Point apartment block Walan is receiving good attention. Place Kangaroo Point agent Rebecca Houghton says the $2500 a week price tag is attracting a wide range of buyers, varying in age and field.
The intense interest in property displayed in the first three weeks of this year suggests to Cush that the Brisbane market is set to have a strong year.