QUEENSLAND's rental market has been overrun in the past few weeks by tenants rushing to find a new property.
It's good news for landlords after recent statistics from the Residential Tenancies Authority showed rents remained flat during the second half of last year.
January is usually the busiest month for property managers as university students shore up their digs for the year and workers start relocating from southern states.
Agents are once again reporting massive crowds at recent rental inspections.
Ray White CBD/South Brisbane has one of the inner city's largest rent roles and principal Dean Yesberg says January has been "absolute pandemonium".
"We have got multiple people lining up for properties, multiple inspections at the same time and multiple applications going on properties," he said.
"Last year with the floods there was more pandemonium. There were people that were flooded out of their house trying to find a property so it's not as busy as last year."
He said one and two-bedroom apartments were the most popular and on average there had been a 5 per cent increase in rents recently.
On the Gold Coast, LJ Hooker Surfers Paradise principal Tony Tooma says vacancy rates are the lowest they have been for some time.
"We're down to about a 2.5 per cent vacancy rate and days on market are down to 10 days. Rental rates are holding," he said.
"The better properties are going the day they become available. We don't have a house to rent as we have leased them all.
"Apartments and duplexes are the only things we have available. Demand for unfurnished apartments is noticeable."
It's encouraging news for landlords.
Last year Brisbane experienced just a 4 per cent rise in rents - mainly in the first half of 2011 - according to Bees Nees researcher Annie von Rudzinski.
"Landlords have been patient and this busy start to 2012 is really encouraging," she said. "The supply of rental homes has not grown much at all but we are still getting new tenants coming to Brisbane."
The RTA stats show Brisbane's total rental pool grew just 1131 properties (less than 1 per cent) in the December quarter.
"In the inner-city suburbs we now have less rental homes to offer tenants than we did three months ago, so it's inevitable rents will rise in that sort of market," she said.
The December figures also highlight no increase in rents since the June quarter.
A two-bedroom Brisbane apartment remained at $380 per week.
It was a similar story outside Brisbane, other than the huge increases in resource towns.
The RTA data shows the Sunshine and Gold coasts did not fare well with the median rent down 2 per cent for two-bed apartments on the Sunshine Coast (down $5 to $295 a week) and it was flat on the Gold Coast at $340.
airns and Townsville rose slightly higher by 4 per cent. Rockhampton's climbed 9 per cent and Mackay 10 per cent.
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