Thanks to large-scale building and the sheer number of first home buyers, rental vacancy rates for both houses and units in Brisbane have remained to be among the highest in the country, second only to Perth.

According to the latest Domain Group data, Brisbane recorded a house rental vacancy rate of 2.6 per cent in July. Only Perth recorded higher vacancies at 4.1 per cent.  As for apartment vacancy rates, Brisbane recorded 3.1 per cent—the third highest after Perth and Darwin.

“Typically, vacancy rates tighten in July, which was seen with other capital cities—but Brisbane is the exception,” said Domain Group chief economist Andrew Wilson. “This means although the rates appear stable, it’s really an indication they will continue to ease into the future.”

Suburbs experiencing high building activity—like Redbank Plain, North Lakes, Griffin, Brisbane City, New Farm, and Hamilton—also topped the lists for the most house and unit vacancies.

The high first home buyer activity also meant fewer tenants in the market. Wilson said, “There are certainly more incentives for first home buyers in Queensland, who are buying the new properties and leaving gaps in the rental market.”

According to Real Estate Institute of Queensland CEO Antonia Mercorella, housing demand will continue to remain strong in Brisbane.

“With major projects, such as Queen’s Wharf and Howard Smith Wharves creating thousands of jobs over the next few years in Brisbane’s inner city, we are confident demand for housing will continue to grow,” she said. “We are seeing steady levels of supply and equally steady levels of demand for inner-city apartments and we expect vacancy rates will hover around these levels for some time to come.”