SYDNEY, July 17 (Xinhua) -- Vacancies in Sydney's rental market are at their highest since 2005, meaning more options and cheaper prices for renters.
Figures released by property analysis firm SQM Research on Tuesday, showed that 2.8 percent of Sydney's rental properties were empty last month, up from 2.5 percent the month before, and the highest since the firm began recording data in 2005.
SQM's managing director Louis Christopher told local media that the numbers were due to a large supply of new apartments as well as an easing in population growth in the city.
"I think this is the only time in my career that I can say with certainty that Sydney is now a buyer's and a renter's market," Christopher said.
According to SQM figures, the average asking price per week for a two-bedroom unit in Sydney is 397.72 U.S. dollars, and for a three-bedroom house, 524.64 U.S. dollars.
The percentage of vacancies in Sydney's rental market is the fourth highest of the Australian state capital cities, with rental properties in southernmost city Hobart, and the nation's capital, Canberra, down below 1 percent.
Christopher expects the trend to continue with a large supply of new apartments still under construction.
"Sydney rents are now down for the year and it is likely rents will continue to slip as there is still a lot of supply coming in the pipeline," Christopher said.