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Vacancy rates reaching 'crisis' levels

By Rich Harvey, CEO, propertybuyer.com.au

The same conditions making it hard to be a renter in the New South Wales capital are providing great returns for those who buy investment property in Sydney.

The Real Estate Institute of New South Wales (REINSW) recently stated that vacancy rates across Sydney are "verging on crisis levels", with the organisation's March 2014 Vacancy Rate Survey showing that the number of properties for rent across the city fell 0.3 per cent, reaching 1.4 per cent.

"We haven't seen vacancy rates right across Sydney this low since November 2011," REINSW President Malcolm Gunning said.

"Sydney is going backwards in regard to properties available for rent. Something must be done to ensure that there is a greater level of choice for those seeking to secure a rental property in Australia's biggest city."

The inner Sydney vacancy rate fell 0.2 per cent, reaching 1.3 per cent - the lowest level across the metropolitan area. This includes areas such as Waverton, Neutral Bay, Bellevue Hill, Double Bay and many others.

Meanwhile, the middle suburbs have seen a vacancy rate decline of 0.4 per cent and the outer suburbs have experienced a fall of 0.1 per cent. This left both regions with vacancy rates of 1.6 per cent and 1.5 per cent, respectively.

"We look with interest to the direction new Premier Mike Baird will take in regard to property," Mr Gunning continued, highlighting the need for changes to the current planning system and a lack of incentives for first home buyers.

However, such vacancy rates represent a golden opportunity for investors in the Sydney region. High demand makes obtaining a cash flow positive property much easier, as there are more people competing for limited housing and willing to pay higher prices to find it.

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