Gladstone’s tight rental market

The LNG-led boom in Gladstone is raising local concerns about a housing/rental crisis, as reported in yesterday’s Gladstone Observer:

Housing/rental crisis not unique

The tight rental market has prompted the usual criticisms of real estate agents and landlords:

Gladstone Mayor Gail Sellers said last week that it is a very tough rental market at the moment in Gladstone with rental prices being driven up and it is unfortunate that some real estate agents and landlords are taking advantage of the situation by dramatically increasing rental prices.

Those higher rents, however, will solve the shortage of housing over the medium to long-term, by attracting investment in new housing. Judging by the full-page ads identifying Gladstone as a property hotspot in Australia’s property investment mags, property investors across Australia are already looking at investment opportunities, including new housing developments, in Gladstone. For example, see pages 67, 70 and 71 of the February issue of Australian Property Investor.

Given the exuberance that tends to accompany mining booms, it would not be surprising if the supply of housing in Gladstone ends up overshooting what is necessary to match demand, and the town ends up with a significant over-supply in five-to-ten years’ time.

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