Finding accommodation in Australia

Finding accommodation in Australia
Updated 2019-07-26 15:15

There are many types of flats, rentals, and houses in Australia, modern or more traditional and ranging in size from a studio flat to a large, multi-room home. While Australia is regarded as an expensive place to live, there are housing options to suit all budgets. Properties in major cities such as Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth can be costly, as can waterfront areas, but better value options can be found in regional areas, or the suburbs further away from city centres.  

Leases in Australia

Leases are most commonly for six or 12 months, although longer or shorter leases can sometimes be negotiated. If you require a period shorter than six months, a serviced apartment, hotel, or flat share may be the best option.

The internet or real estate agencies are the best places to start your search for a property. Once you have found a potential rental property, you will need to apply to the landlord or rental agency. Applications will usually ask for details such as your contact information, employment status, personal and professional references, and rental history. It can save time to have this information ready before starting your search. Rentals can sometimes be competitive, so having a strong application can be helpful. The most popular websites for rental properties are Domain and Real Estate, which feature all main cities in Australia and allow you to filter your search by price, bedrooms, amenities, and location.

When signing a lease, you will often be asked to pay a bond, equal to one month's rent, as a security guarantee. If the rental unit is left in good condition, the rental bond will be returned, but if there is any damage to the property, the bond may not be refunded. It can be helpful to hire a professional cleaning team to come in when you are vacating the property, to ensure it is left in a clean condition.

Rent prices in Australia

Australian cities can be very expensive for rentals. However, with high wages, you are generally okay to get by. If you are looking to rent an apartment on your own, you will be looking at anything between AUD 250 to AUD 500 per week. However, if you are happy to house share, this brings the costs down - anything from AUD 100 to AUD 250 a week. The most popular house share online sites include Flatmates and Flatmate Finder. Canberra has just overtaken Sydney as the most expensive city to rent, with Melbourne, Perth, and Sydney close behind.

Water is usually covered by the landlord or owner, meaning you won't have to pay additional costs for water bills. The owners should also look after the routine maintenance of the property when required. Tenants will be required to pay for electricity and gas, as well as internet or cable. The internet is widely accessible in Australia, and the government is currently rolling out a national broadband network to improve the country's access and speed of connectivity. Utilities can be set up before moving into the property, to ensure you are connected as soon as you arrive.

It is helpful to check if there is an air-conditioning system in the house or apartment you want to rent, as Australian summers can be scorching. Conversely, southern parts of the country can get very cold in winter, so modern installation, double glazed windows, and central heating systems can be good to look out for when renting.

Rental units are available furnished, unfurnished, or partially furnished. Australian rental units often do not include appliances such as refrigerators, washing machines, and/or clothes dryers, so double check if this applies to your rental.

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.