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AGENTS in Brisbane’s inner western suburbs are reporting an earlier start to the peak rental season with a surge in inquiries in the first week of the new year.
Figures from the Residential Tenancy Authority confirmed rents for apartments in Toowong and St Lucia were bucking general trends across Brisbane.
According to the data, there were 242 two-bedroom units rented in the September quarter in 2017, for a median rent of $415 a week.
In the corresponding quarter in 2015, a total of 183 two-bedroom apartments rented for a median rent of $390 a week.
There was an even more significant growth in prices for one-bedroom units, with 104 one-bedroom apartments rented in the September quarter for a median rent of $380 a week. That compared with just 64 one-bedroom units renting for a median rent of $339 a week in the same quarter in 2015.
“We have been amazed by the good numbers booking inspections and we are renting properties on the first and second viewings, often with multiple applications,” Belle Property Toowong director Robin McIlwain said.
“We have not experienced this sort of activity for five years and are most encouraged by the apparent change in the market.”
“Despite predictions by many that there would be a glut of apartments for rent in the area, there seems to be strong demand for rental accommodation across all types of property, and apartments are as popular as ever.”
Ms McIlwain said demand was rising as a result of a number of influences.
“We have seen our first growth in population in southeast Queensland since 2009 and as soon as we have people moving back to Brisbane, areas like Toowong feel the benefits first,” she said.
Ms McIlwain attributed the early rush for rentals to the University of Queensland commencing slightly earlier this year because of the Commonwealth Games.
Ms McIlwain said the popularity of UQ, which was ranked as one of the top 100 universities in the world, and the popularity in particular of its Business School, had resulted in more enrolments.
“This brings more academic staff and their families as well as students to the area,” she said