australias top ten worst places to rent
Australia’s top ten worst places to rent include cities across the eastern seaboard. Image: Canva.
  • Sydney was one of the worst performers with rents $350 more expensive per week
  • Melbourne and Brisbane saw rents increase by over $150 per week compared to last year
  • Calls for more social and affordable housing continue

Analysis by the national housing campaign Everybody’s Home has revealed how much worse renting is compared to a year ago.

Sydney is copping the brunt of it with renters paying more than $350 extra per week in rent, Brisbane renters paying an extra $185 per week, and Melbourne renters slugged an extra $165 per week.

The campaign analysed SQM Research Weekly Rents Index, finding that over the past year, asking rents have risen between 28% and almost 50% for Sydney, 18% and 37% for Brisbane, and between 11% and 36% in Melbourne.

Vacancy rates across the eastern seaboard are also at measly lows, Sydney and Melbourne vacancy rates are sub 2%, with Brisbane around or below 1.1%.

Worst places to rent in Sydney

Everybody’s Home analysis found the top 10 worst affected areas for tenants in the Sydney Basin, based on SQM Research Weekly Rents Index for combined units and houses.

Region Asking rent 

Feb 23

12 month change in weekly rent Vacancy rate

Jan 23

1. Eastern Suburbs $1,073 $351 or 48.6% 1.2%
2. Lower North Shore $1,097 $338 or 44.5% 1.7%
3. Sydney CBD $1,027 $303 or 41.8% 2.9%
4. Canterbury Bankstown $603 $167 or 38.3% 0.7%
5. Inner West $714 $184 or 34.8% 1%
6. St George $641 $163 or 34% 1.1%
7. Upper North Shore $848 $209.55 or 32.8% 2%
8. Parramatta $579.54 $136 or 30.7% 1.1%
9. Northern Beaches $1,082 $251 or 30.2% 1.3%
10. Sutherland Shire $744 $172.54 or 30.2% 1%
11. Western Sydney $565.58 $123 or 27.8% 1.3%

*week ending 28 February 2023. Source: Everybody’s Home, SQM Research.

Worst affected areas in Brisbane

The national campaign also analysed the data for Brisbane.

Region Asking rent 

Feb 23

12 month change in weekly rent Vacancy rate

Jan 23

Inner Brisbane $685 $185 or 37% 1.1%
Brisbane CBD $672 $156 or 30.3% 1.1%
West Brisbane $588 $116 or 24.6% 0.8%
Southern Brisbane $561 $110 or 24.4% 0.9%
East Brisbane $703 $132 or 23.1% 1%
Ipswich $477 $86 or 21.9% 1.1%
Beenleigh Corridor $578 $96 or 20% 0.6%
Northern Brisbane $578 $91 or 18.6% 0.6%
South East Brisbane $656 $101.52 or 18.3% 1%

*week ending 28 February 2023. Source: Everybody’s Home, SQM Research.

Worst affected areas in Melbourne

The national campaign also analysed the data for Melbourne.

Region Asking rent 

Feb 23

12 month change in weekly rent Vacancy rate

Jan 23

Inner East Melbourne $622 $165 or 36.2% 1.3%
Melbourne City $622 $157.51 or 33.9% 1.5%
Bayside $629 $134.59 or 27.2% 1.3%
Eastern Melbourne $559 $108 or 23.9% 0.9%
Melbourne North $498 $76 or 18.1% 1.1%
Mornington Peninsula $539 $82 or 17.9% 0.9%
South West Melbourne $496 $66 or 15.4% 1.5%
South East Melbourne $492 $65 or 15.2% 0.9%
Western Melbourne $448 $55 or 13.9% 1.6%
North West Melbourne $453 $45 or 11.1% 1.3%

*week ending 28 February 2023. Source: Everybody’s Home, SQM Research.

Everybody’s Home spokesperson Maiy Azize said the impact of rising rents is dire, with many being forced to skip meals, avoid going to the doctor and get into debt spirals just to pay the rent.

“There’s only so much people can afford to pay in rent. Right now, there’s no end to the housing crisis in sight. Politicians can’t keep leaving it to chance, hoping we’ve reached a tipping point. The sad reality is rents will keep climbing without government action.

Azize also noted that with interest rates rising, “… renters could be faced with another increase and unlike landlords, they don’t get tax handouts to help them stay afloat.”

“We also need the Federal Government to make a major investment in social housing. Australia needs to build at least 25,000 new social homes each year to end our shortfall.”



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