Renters win as owners face short-stay apocalypse

“The accommodation apocalypse that hit short-stay Airbnb apartment owners and operators in Sydney and Melbourne is leading to an oversupply of long-term rentals, sharply driving down rents.

The sudden halt to international and local travel in March is flooding key inner Sydney and Melbourne markets with an extra 1000 former Airbnb and short-stay apartments a week.

“For quite a number of weeks we were getting over 1000 new listings coming on to the rental market. Last week it dropped to around 700. There has been a huge increase overall,” said Edwin Almeida, director of Sydney-based Ribbon Property Consultants.

Louis Christopher, director of research house SQM, said up to 40,000 units that were formerly used as Airbnb or for short stays could potentially shift to the long-term leasing market.

SQM figures released Tuesday show a large jump in national vacancies from 2 per cent in March to 2.6 per cent in April.

Melbourne and Sydney’s CBDs recorded a huge rise, with Sydney’s rocketing to 13.8 per cent in April from 5.7 per cent in March.

Melbourne’s was up two percentage points to 7.6 per cent, but Southbank’s vacancy rate hit 13 per cent.

Mr Christopher said a combination of factors – the shift from short-term rentals, halt to migration and travel bans – are impacting landlords.”

Read the full article here.