Timing your move – When is the Best Time To Find a New Rental Home?

Renting or investing in property is a big decision. The success of both can be greatly influenced by the time of year that you enter the market. If you time your move right, you’ll save yourself money and a whole lot of aggravation.

Investment property owners – when is the best time to put your property up for rent?

For investment property owners, the time of year you choose to list your property can have an impact on the income that your property generates. There are two high-demand periods to consider: January to February and June through August.

January to February

With the new year comes a new start for tenants on the move. Kids are on school holidays, and the Christmas break provides families with an opportunity to pack and move house. It’s a time of year when people can take an extended period off work to move and get settled before the start of the school and work years.

Signing new tenants during this high-demand period will work in your favour in the long term. Renewing the lease or finding another tenant during this peak period is ideal for the growth of your investment.

June to August

You may not think that the depths of winter are a great time to rent out your home and in most cases you’d be right. But if your property is in a suburb with a lot of families, or if there is a university nearby, it may be worth investigating, because June through August marks the mid-year break for school and uni students.

Location plays a big part in determining demand. If you’re keen to know the best time to rent out your property, do some research into the suburb’s demographic. A family-centric suburb with schools or universities nearby will have a different demand period than a home by the beach or an inner-city apartment. Always check with a property management expert who can provide you with tailored advice.

Tenants – when is the best time of the year to find a new rental home?

For tenants, the reverse of the owners’ advice mentioned above is true. Over the summer months, in particular, there is intense competition for homes. If you’re considering entering the tenant pool, and you have no definite deadline, you should make the move in spring.

It is harder for property owners to rent out their homes in mid- to late spring. Exams are held around this time, so it’s not ideal to move school-aged kids. Any six-month leases signed in peak periods are months from being renewed and the Christmas holidays (an ideal time to move house) are still a few months away. All these factors are favourable for would-be tenants.

One thing you may want to consider is keeping an eye on the vacancy rate in an area that interests you. The vacancy rate is expressed as a percentage and the higher the vacancy rate, the better it is for tenants. While the exact numbers differ depending on state and location, there is a swing favouring tenants in the months of October through to early December.

If you are a property investor, or renter, having an understanding of the local housing market and how the seasons affect demand and supply are important skills to have. Knowing the times of year that favour you will guarantee you a better chance of success.