SQM Research has reported that the overall Melbourne vacancy rate was at 2.9 per cent in March 2012 (an overall vacancy rate of 3 per cent is considered a balanced market). The Melbourne market is fragmented with differences in vacancy rates from inner to middle to outer suburbs being apparent.
Director Keith Bayliss reports that MICM Property’s vacancy rates are even lower, and after the usual seasonal spike of activity in January and February they have been sitting at around 2 per cent. “this demonstrates the continuing strong demand for inner city apartments. The attractions of access to excellent infrastructure, short commuting times and all the lifestyle amenities that come with proximity to the CBD are driving demand”.
The inner city rental market has also easily absorbed a number of new developments completed over the past 12 months in some suburbs like Southbank, Docklands and the CBD. The growing population also stimulates growth in services and amenities such as cafés, bars, festivals and events.