Renting in Australia
Once you are settled in and have familiarised yourself with the neighbourhood you wish to live in for the longer term yet are not ready to commit to purchasing your own home, it is a good idea to move from your fully-furnished short term accommodation to a longer term rental. Long term in this sense refers to 12-month lease or longer.
It is common in Australia for real estate agents to manage rental properties on behalf of the owners, so you would usually be dealing with the agents instead of with the owners directly.
Most rentals work on a 12-month lease term although many owners are willing to negotiate to start off on a 6-month lease with possible extension. Don’t be afraid to ask if you think this option gives you more flexibility.
Rentals in Australia are usually quoted with weekly rates. Be sure you clarify with your landlords or real estate agents what they equate to per month. It is common that people mistake their monthly rate to be equivalent to 4x weekly rate.
There are 2 common methods to calculate monthly rent from weekly rate:
Method 1: 52 week/year basis
Weekly rent = $300
1 year = 52 weeks
1 year = 12 months
Monthly rent is therefore = (52 weeks x $300/week) / 12 months = $1,300/month
Method 2: 365 days/year basis
Weekly rent = $300
1 year = 365 days
1 week = 7 days
Daily rent = $300 / 7 days = $42.86
Monthly rent is therefore = (365 days x $42.86/day) / 12 months = $1,303.57/month
Many properties have open inspections on a Saturday, and some open for inspections twice a week — one on a weekday and one on a Saturday. Once you have inspected a property, you can make an application, which will be assessed on your income and your perceived reliability in paying rent. Good rental properties get taken very quickly so it is wise to have your paperwork ready for identification (ID) checks and in some cases, references from employers or past owners may be helpful.
Pet friendly rental properties can be hard to find and in many cases are not allowed in apartments due to the strata laws.
If successful, you will usually be required to sign a lease agreement which protects both yourself and the owner. You may also be required to pay one month’s rental in advance, and one-month rental as a security bond or deposit which shall be refundable when you exit the lease provided there are no outstanding rental charges, cleaning or repairs that are deemed to be your responsibilities. Be sure you work with a trusted and reputable agency, and retain all documentation in relation to your lease such as your lease agreement, security bond receipt, rental payment receipt, etc.
Most long term rental properties are unfurnished and if you are not your bringing furniture with you, you have the options to rent furniture, or purchase new or secondhand furniture. Utilities such as electricity, water, gas, telephone and internet are the responsibilities of the tenant and you will have to arrange for these services to be connected prior to moving in. Most real estate agents offer help in organising these or can at least refer you to companies who can help.
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The content of this website is written and owned by Sterling Healthcare Resourcing Pty Ltd, an Australian-owned healthcare recruitment agency which specialises in permanent and locum job placements of Australian and international doctors. This website contains information that serves as a general guide to living and working in Australia.