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Published on November 13th, 2012

Darwin rental shortage must be handled right: agent

It's important that officials don't respond to Darwin's rental shortage by providing excessive stock as there is the very real chance that over time, an oversupply will occur and prices will plummet.
That's the warning from Elders Real Estate general manager in Darwin, Chris Deutrom.

"We have a number of infrastructure projects underway at the moment and after they finish, there's a risk of an exodus whereby the result is a huge drop in property prices.

"As a real estate agent, I'd love to see more projects come to the region which can prop up the property sector and the economy in general. But what we really need are teachers, police officers, public servants and people who aren't transient workers but are looking to permanently base themselves here," he said.

The government is currently in the process of releasing land in order to facilitate growth in the number of new properties being built, which not only looks to bolster the housing sector but the construction industry as well.

Assistance from the government is far reaching, Chris says, currently there is the $7,000 first home buyer grant, stamp duty concessions and a $10,000 build start grant.

The rental market is experiencing some undersupply, which is causing high rental prices and low vacancy rates – as low as 0.5 per cent. The only properties that are seeing any sort of vacancy are ones that are undergoing maintenance.

Currently where the market is, Chris would almost like to see a bit of a slowdown. The industry is moving along so quickly, especially in the rental sector – because as he said "where there's a boom, there's a bust".

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