What Perth property investors need to know about rental increases

What Perth property investors need to know about rental increases

Since 2018, Perth rental prices have been on the rise, but they have increased dramatically over the past two years. Several factors have contributed to this, with the ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic playing a big role. Here, we will examine these factors in more detail, provide context that will make the interaction between market and economic activity more accessible, and ultimately assess the viability of raising rental prices.

Factors that affect rental prices

Property features

When advertising your rental property, the property features will play a significant role in attracting tenants. These features include size and location, the condition and type of the property, and its proximity to amenities.

To remain competitive, it is essential to understand the property market of your investment’s location. Identifying similar rental properties in your area will help you to benchmark yours and determine its rental price accordingly. The relationship between supply and demand in your area is also going to factor into this calculation. An area close to the beach or the city will experience higher demand than one in the suburbs, driving prices skyward.

The size, layout and condition of your property determine the kind of tenants you attract. Larger homes with a backyard or pool are likely to appeal to families more than young couples. An already impressive property can be elevated significantly by simple but effective value adds. This could range from updating fixtures and fittings to more involved renovations. Attention to detail on this front can help set your property apart from what may be otherwise comparable prospects.

Amenities also go a long way towards increasing the desirability of your property. Whether it’s an apartment building with a pool and fitness centre or a house close to parks and restaurants, amenities appeal to the lifestyle preferences of your tenants and, when agreeable, will drive demand.

Are you interested in adding value to your rental property to maximise investment returns? Get in touch today and request a Free Rental Appraisal.

Market influences

As of January 2023, Perth vacancy rates are at 0.7%, which is only marginally higher than the 42-year historic low of 0.6% achieved a month prior in December 2022. In a balanced rental market, this figure should be around 2.5% – 3.5%, a rate not seen in Perth for over two years. As such, we are currently experiencing a very tight rental market in which demand far exceeds supply, thereby driving higher prices.

There are several causes behind these market conditions. One is the rising cost of construction, itself driven by supply chain issues, making core materials like timber and steel significantly more expensive. As a result, the number of dwellings being built has dropped.

The residual impact of the pandemic has also heightened competition levels in the rental market. The increase in migration as we move further away from Perth’s period of border closures has played a part in this, while the rental price dip during the early stages of the pandemic led higher levels of young people to move into the rental market. Though conditions have since changed, many of these young people still occupy apartments and share houses that they previously would have shunned in favour of living at home a little longer and saving money.

Are you unsure whether you should sell or rent your investment property? Read our helpful guide.

The state of the economy

As of March 2023, the RBA has increased the official cash rate by a further 25 basis points to 3.6%, continuing an upward trend in the cash rate. However, there are signs that the pace of this rise may be slowing down, with the last few increases being by only 25 basis points, compared to increases of 50 basis points per month during the June to September period in 2022.

Management of the cash rate aims to stabilise the economy in the face of inflation and other undesirable economic conditions. The cash rate essentially represents the cost of borrowing and has a direct causal effect on interest rates; if the cash rate goes up, so do interest rates.

Rising interest rates affect rental prices because the property owner will often have a mortgage on their investment. If the interest on that mortgage rises, rental payments will also need to increase to cover at least part of the additional expenditure the landlord is incurring.

Should you raise the rent of your investment property?

Raising rental prices is a smart way to counter the effects of increasing interest rates, particularly if you are paying off a mortgage on your rental property. That being said, it’s important to be aware of the legislation around rent increases. Generally, for periodic and fixed-term leases, rents can only be increased once every six months, and you will need to give 60 days’ notice before the change can take effect. This is not always the case, particularly if an existing tenant enters a new fixed-term tenancy having ended a previous fixed-term lease or if the lease becomes periodic. It is crucial to consult the legislation to determine the appropriate decision in your situation before acting.

Putting legislative concerns to one side, it is also essential to consider the context of your tenants. It could be the case that, though a rent increase may balance your bottom line as a landlord, it will make remaining at the property untenable for your tenant. Suppose they are a perfect match and have been conscientious and respectful occupants. In that case, the cost of replacing them, potentially with a less-suited tenant, may outweigh the increase in rental income. It is important to take these considerations into account when adjusting rents.

Do you need help finding the right tenant for your rental property? Get in touch today.


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Shirley Smith


We are, and have always been, a family-run enterprise. Founded by Shirley Smith in 1995, the idea for Access Property Management was conceived when Shirley realised there was a high level of demand for dedicated property management agencies, a need that was not being met by the existing real estate market. The agency is now headed by Shirley’s daughter, Stacy Whiting, who joined the business in 1996, and her husband, Mark Whiting, who has been at the agency for over 18 years. This focus on longevity extends to Access’ dedicated team of qualified property managers, with most staff having worked at the agency for 9 years or more.


Shirley’s original objective was to provide a closer link between property owners and high quality tenants provided by relocation companies and the corporate/executive sector. Over time we extended our services to better cater for the needs of all property investors and quality tenants, who were seeking a higher level of service, focus and experience.


For over 27 years, our family owned business has made an impact within the real estate industry in Perth Metro and based on our results we’ve established a strong reputation for integrity, distinction and innovation in real estate and management services.

Meet our team of dedicated property specialists.

“It is always fantastic to deal with Stacy and the team at Access Property Management. Highly recommend to anyone!”

Anike – Facebook

“Many thanks for your help.  I have a couple of other properties and you guys are by far the easiest to work with and most professional.”

Dean – Owner

I would like to personally thank Kelly for her professionalism and pleasant manner when we were applying for a rental. My son Jarrod (18yrs) & daughter Nicole (22yrs) had been applying for rentals all of January with no success & I was disappointed that some of the agencies hadn’t even followed up on their good references to allow for a fair assessment of their application. As Kelly would know we were successful in this application but had to decline as we were also successful in purchasing a property in that same week. Kelly was very understanding and a pleasure to deal with. I will highly recommend your agency .

Heather – Prospective Tenant

“I have been using their services as a tenant, and I can say its an amazing experience. They are prompt at everything and quite helpful. Alongside, the property manager carry a great professional work ethics which is wonderful. You, as a tenant always feel accompanied by your property manager. Cheers.”

Rahul – Google

“I rented a property through Natalie at APM. She was attentive, proactive and professional – everything you could want in a property manager (as a tenant and as a home owner, as I am myself also). I highly recommend APM, their professional staff and convenient services.”

Daniel – Mt Pleasant – Facebook

“I have rented through Access twice since 2010 and both times have been great, particularly the last time when I rented in South Perth and my rental agent was Kelly Duncan. What a delight she was and is and nothing was too much trouble. Thanks Kelly for such a great experience. Shame I couldn’t stay with you.”

Vanda – South Perth – Facebook

“Mark, Stacy and the team at Access you are a pleasure to do business with. I highly recommend to anyone that requires high level, professional property management.”

Brett – Facebook