Options open up in rental market

Emerald real estate agents have plenty of housing rentals on offer as the market starts to kick back across the region.
Emerald real estate agents have plenty of housing rentals on offer as the market starts to kick back across the region.

COMPARED to four months ago, when you had close to zero chance of finding a rental in a Bowen Basin town, today's market appears to be absolutely flooded with options.

As of yesterday, there were 66 rental properties advertised on in Emerald with an average price of $685. In Blackwater, there were 24 vacant listings.

In the Isaac region, Moranbah remained the host of the highest rental prices, averaging more than $2800 a week.

A search revealed 163 available rental homes in the land-locked mining town, with the highest price listed as $3500 a week.

Just 47 of the vacant rental properties were advertised for less than $1000 a week, the lowest of which was $550.

It was a similar story in Dysart, the mining town which housed the majority of permanent workers at BMA's mothballed Norwich Park Mine.

Of the 97 listed properties in Dysart, 22 cracked the $1000-a-week mark, with the highest advertised weekly rent at $2200 for a five-bedroom, two-bathroom home. The average was about $775 a week.

Emerald agents agreed yesterday it was a correction the town desperately needed.

"Four months ago you would have had no chance of finding a rental in Emerald," CD Adams principal Clinton Adams said.

"Today there is choice and variety.

"I think it all just happened at once. A lot of contract jobs just don't exist any more for whatever reason, and also there is the repositioning of contracts in the mines."

Emerald Real Estate principal Jason Campbell said an upsurge in new product becoming available in the southern estates had caused the market to plateau.

"Prices have come back a bit but they got out of hand, they were unsustainable," he said.

"We're seeing similar things in Blackwater. While prices are still higher there, there is more availability.

"We're still getting applications in daily but people don't have to jump at the first available option now. They can take a bit more time."

Mr Adams agreed and said the market could not have keep spiralling in the upwards direction it had.

"I think it's good that tenants can now have a fair go. It was extremely tough on families for a while there, and that's not the right thing from a social point of view. We really couldn't keep going the way we were going," he said. "I think it will be interesting to see how the next quarter goes.

"Emerald is a resilient market. There's a lot of diversity in industry here."

The Central Highlands Development Corporation lists all available rentals week by week as they come online at its website. The development corporation collates information from local real estate agents each week. Visit here for the full listings.

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