How to keep your rental costs low in 2021

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Struggling to juggle the cost of rental prices with the added financial stress of COVID-related restrictions and blockages? You have options to potentially reduce your rental costs in 2021.

The last Estate rental report shows that in all capitals except Melbourne, Perth and Hobart, rental values ​​of homes in the September quarter rose 2.2% to 5.5%.

Home rents rose during the quarter in Sydney for the first time in a year, hitting a record high of $ 580 per week, an increase of $ 30 from the September quarter. According to Domain, the September quarter saw the biggest quarterly increase since 2008 for homes and 2017 for units.

It was a similar story for the units too, all capitals except Adelaide, Perth and Hobart saw rental prices rise 1.4% to 4.4% in the September quarter. .

In Brisbane, Domain reported that unit rents rose faster than homes during the quarter. This is a change from almost a year of stronger house rent increases.

RateCity tips to reduce your rental costs

If your rent expenses are on the rise, you can take action today to help get your budget back on track and reduce financial stress.

First, if you are an NSW resident financially affected by COVID, you can continue to negotiate a payment plan until November 11, thanks to the New South Wales government moratorium on evictions.

The key is to have regular, open conversations with your agent and landlord to make sure they understand the financial difficulties you are having. NSW landlords can potentially apply for financial assistance for a reduced rent they are offering to their tenants affected by COVID.

For Victorian residents, the moratorium on evictions has unfortunately not been reinstated. However, new rental laws have been put in place indicating that the Victoria Civil and Administrative Court (VCAT) must decide whether it is “reasonable and proportionate” in the current circumstances to allow the eviction of a tenant.

If you are not affected by COVID, you may instead consider doing your research and making sure that you are paying a price comparable to similar properties in your area. Rental prices often depend on supply and demand, so if you can prove that there are many affordable options nearby, you may be able to avoid a rent increase.

RateCity Research Director Sally Tindall said: “The key to any rent negotiation is to have a conversation with your agent or landlord early. Sticking your head in the sand and dodging calls from your landlord won’t make the rent problems go away.

“If you’re a good tenant, it’s in your landlord’s best interests to keep you. Changing tenants is a difficult and costly process for landlords, as vacant properties equate to a loss of rent. “

“If you are a clean, reliable tenant, it might be in your landlord’s best interests to keep you, rather than having to go through the expense and scams of finding someone new, who might not be so tidy and diligent, ”she said.

You can also consider taking a longer lease in exchange for a small reduction in rent. It’s a win-win for the landlord who won’t have to find new tenants on a regular basis and you will have fixed rents over a longer period.

What if you can’t negotiate your rent increase?

If you can’t avoid a rent increase, it might be worth thinking outside the box.

Can you take a roommate to reduce your rent? Or do you have a car space that you can rent to earn some extra cash? These ideas will likely require your landlord’s approval, but if that means keeping you as a tenant and it’s a fair request, they might say yes.

If you can’t negotiate your way out of a rate hike, consider moving to a more affordable area, where there is more inventory to help keep rents realistic. While moving can be an expensive exercise, it is a one-time cost that can often be better than overworking yourself week after week by paying more rent than you can afford.


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