If you want to find an affordable place to rent in Sydney, why not head a little south … to Melbourne.
Sydney now has the dubious title of being the most expensive place to rent a unit in Australia, with your average tenant handing over a record $510 a week, data compiled by Domain Group shows.
Melbourne on the other hand is a relative bargain at $370 a week, $140 cheaper.
"With rental prices significantly below that of Sydney, Melbourne is definitely a more rental friendly city," Domain senior economist Andrew Wilson says.
Dr Wilson said the fact that Sydney had overtaken Darwin as the most expensive capital city for unit rentals was concerning for first home buyers in the harbour city, where investors have been driving a property price boom.
"Notwithstanding the deposits required for purchasing property, increased rents means there are more outgoing expenses for first home buyers and therefore more time and saving needed to meet the requirements," he said.
While Sydney was the most expensive place to rent a unit during the September quarter, it was a bit easier to find a place there compared to Melbourne.
Vacancy rates in Melbourne were just 1.6 per cent in the quarter, while Sydney boasted a 2.3 per cent rate.
Sydney was also the second most expensive city to rent a house, behind Darwin where landlords charged an average $590 a week.
House rents rose 3.9 per cent to a record $530 in Sydney, dwarfing Melbourne's 2.6 per cent rise to $390.
While Darwin held on to the top spot, rents there have fallen dramatically in the past 12 months and are at their lowest levels since 2012.
- Sydney: homes up 3.9pct at $530, units up 3.0pct at $510
- Melbourne: homes up 2.6pct at $390, units up 1.4 pct to $370
- Brisbane: homes flat at $400, units flat at $370
- Adelaide: homes up 1.4pct at $350, units up 1.8pct at $290
- Perth: homes down 6.7pct to $420, units down 8.9pct to $360
- Hobart: homes up 6.5pct at $330, units up 7.7pct at $280
- Darwin: homes down 10.6pct to $590, units down 12.7pct to $480
- Canberra: homes flat at $450, units flat at $380