THE Property Exchange business development manager Siobhan Payne said the time of year often influenced rental demand.
“Over the last quarter, families have been seeking homes before the start of a new school year,” she said.
“Therefore we found we had a database full of prospects seeking three to four-bedroom homes within the local school catchment area.
“Homes that were priced correctly and ticked all the boxes had strong inquiries and leased with ease.”
Ms Payne said proximity to schools and amenities was central to the western suburbs’ appeal.
“In the western suburbs (including Subiaco and Shenton Park), we are lucky to have many of Perth’s top schools, and with our proximity to the city, local hospitals and the beach, there is always steady demand,” she said.
“The proximity to the city, UWA and the hospitals particularly appeals to young professionals (who also may be looking to start a family) that need to be close to work.”
Ms Payne said rental returns in the Subiaco agency’s area varied.
“$450 to $600 per week is the average for young professionals or people/couples sharing,” she said.
“However, rents between $700 and $900, even $1000, per week tend to be the average for a family, and this has remained steady.
“There were certainly much higher returns in past years when there were more people coming into Perth and requiring housing, but tenants are now more savvy with their rental spending, and know what they should be getting for their money.”
Ms Payne said investors looking to achieve a good rental return and fill vacancies quickly should consider presentation, even if it was just fresh paint or new window treatments, and meeting tenants’ wants.
“Well-appointed properties, which are neatly presented, have airconditioning and a dishwasher (which are essential) usually lease quickly,” she said.
“Spacious bedrooms and living areas, and parking were in demand, and if owners can consider pets this is also a very strong incentive for tenants, as 60 per cent of households in Australia own pets.”
Ms Payne offered the following advice for people considering buying an investment property: “Buy near amenities, and if the property doesn’t have airconditioning or a dishwasher, or is very dated, look at carrying out a renovation”.
“IKEA and Bunnings are great places to get affordable modern kitchens and bathrooms, especially for small houses and apartments.”
It was also important to engage a property manager who knew the local market.
“I am often contacted by owners looking for advice on what they should do to their newly purchased property, and how much they should spend, to get it ready for rental,” Ms Payne said.
“We know what tenants want and can help investors get the best rental return for their property without spending a small fortune.” n