Airbnb Australia has been quick to rebut a new report on how the short-term rental industry is unhinging the Australian housing market, the latest in a long list of them, calling it “deeply” flawed.
Airbnb Australia has been quick to rebut a new report on how the short-term rental industry is unhinging the Australian housing market, the latest in a long list of them, calling it “deeply” flawed.
As detailed in the Technological Disruption in Private Housing Markets: The Case of Airbnb by the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI), inner-city areas that rely on tourism are seeing a decline in rental properties.
In Sydney, these include the suburbs of Darlinghurst and Manly, with Airbnb-listed properties making up between 11.2 per cent and 14.8 per cent of the suburbs’ rental stock.
This is also being felt in Melbourne, including central Melbourne, Docklands, Southbank, Fitzroy and St Kilda, which account from between 8.6 per cent and 15.3 per cent of the suburbs’ rental stock.
In these suburbs, the trends of decreasing bond lodgement rates and increasing property vacancy indicate to AHURI that there is a likelihood of short-term letting properties removing long-term rental properties away from the market.
“The findings suggest that STL is contributing to the challenges already confronted by long-term renters in these local markets,” the report noted.
“While the city-wide affordability impact may be limited, those seeking long-term housing will face a market that is at best more complex and uncertain, and may also be moderately less affordable in some local areas.”
Besides the direct influence, the report stated that there is also an indirect influence on the property market being noticed, shaping “how we think about and deal with property” — the nature of fluid property and financial attitudes.
With properties bouncing between short-term lets and long-term rentals, the report noted that property owners using their houses for short-term letting can allow for these investors to find an alternative income opportunity, with some investors specifically changing their properties to accommodate short-term letting.
However, the report showed that there were others likely to return back to renting out the property in the long term due to the instability of letting out short-term as a long-term plan. But as the report noted, “this reinforces the conclusion that [short-term letting] is contributing to greater fluidity of property use, where the competing benefits of different monetisation strategies are regularly weighed up”.
This then, in turn, is changing how housing is culturally thought about, with the holidaying aspect of short-term let properties seriously being considered.
“While many hosts may not be earning significant incomes, hosting is nonetheless reshaping their perceptions of the value of their housing,” the report stated.
However, Airbnb has come out and denied the findings in the report, claiming that it was “deeply flawed” [and] “relies on unreliable data and an unrepresentative survey to make inaccurate claims”.
“As the researchers themselves identified but chose to ignore, Airbnb is simply not a primary factor in the housing market,” a spokesperson for Airbnb said in a statement provided to REB sister publication Smart Property Investment.
“The Airbnb community represents less than 1 per cent of the Sydney and Melbourne housing markets.
“Holding less than 1 per cent of the market responsible just isn’t credible, and more seriously distracts from the big causes, like the planning system, population growth and taxation.”
The statement continued, claiming that it was wrong and unfair “to malign the working and middle-class families who rely on home-sharing”.
“At a time when the cost of living is high, the report even casts aspersions on families wanting to [earn] extra income.
“The typical Airbnb host in Australia earns a modest $107 a week or $5,600 a year, which we know helps them make ends meet and pay the bills.”
Peter Koulizos, chairman of the Property Investment Professionals of Australia, did not disagree with the report’s initial findings, but he did disagree with the report on the basis that it does not pose any issue Australia-wide.
“In the city suburbs of Sydney and Melbourne and the beachside suburbs of Sydney, there obviously is an issue, but in 95 per cent of Australian suburbs and country towns and regional areas, there isn’t an issue,” Mr Koulizos told Smart Property Investment.
“There is no need for any sort of regulation.
“Where there is high demand for short-term lets, there may need to be some sort of restriction, but it’s all supply and demand. If lots of people want to holiday in Manly and then they’re going to look for Airbnb in Manly, they’re not going to look for Airbnb in Rooty Hills, are they?”
Using Technology to Find the Perfect Australian Home
House prices may be falling or flatlining in most Australian cities but analysts don’t predict this to be a long-term downturn. For buyers, it could be perfect time to find an investment. Whether you’re an Australian citizen looking for your first home, a landlord looking to extend your existing portfolio or a foreign national relocating, advances in technology within the housing sector can significantly aid the process of finding the perfect property.
Building a Shortlist
With thousands of properties available to view online, technology is allowing house buyers to cast the net wider than ever to find their ideal home. Not only can potential buyers search the latest properties on sale from the comfort of their home. They can research the local area and view photos of the street and property taken via satellite. It means buyers can be fully prepared and able to rule out properties without the need to physically visit them all.
For instance, if a house is located next to a busy road or a cemetery this information is immediately available via Google Maps or Google Earth. These apps will also give a real time idea of traffic levels and local amenities. These online tools are particularly useful for those looking to purchase an Australian property from oversees. It’s easier than ever to research and shortlist potential residential areas, including the all-important school catchments, without having to trawl to streets and make endless and expensive recce visits.
Viewing Properties Remotely
When it comes to viewing properties, online tools are making it even easier, again sometimes negating the need for buyers to physically attend the property. In fact, a growing percentage of properties are being purchased ‘sight unseen’ – a growing trend within the market driven by technological advances and especially relevant in the investment sector of the market. Virtual reality tours and sophisticated 360° photography can showcase a property like never before – with reports of significant increases in sales when utilizing this tech. Some agents are also offering live streaming of open houses to reach wider audiences.
Augmented reality apps could further allow potential buyers to plan where they would put their own furniture.
Making Life Easier for Agents Too
Technology is speeding up every part of the buying process. Not only can agents now use laser scanning to get instant and accurate dimensions to automatically create floorplans. Mortgage comparisons and online services are streamlining the mortgage application process. Something that previously could take weeks or months can often go through in a matter of days. Some agents are also using technology to provide 24-hour assistance to potential buyers. It’s predicted that interactive chat bots will be the next big trend in selling houses online.
Technology is permeating every area of modern life, often enhancing things for the better. None more so in the housing sector where it’s both simplifying processes and empowering people with the knowledge and tools to find their perfect property. It’s making life easier for buyers, sellers and agents to link up, communicate and ultimately speeding up the home buying procedure.
With the wet summer months approaching, it is highly likely that ants will find refuge somewhere in your home. We have compiled some tips to get rid of ants naturally.
House ants leave a chemical pheromone trail wherever they move. If you kill them, other ants will follow the trail and arrive in the same places. For this reason, it is necessary to kill the entire colony.
Homemade bait for house ants
Borax will kill house ants, and powdered sugar can be used to attract them. To make a homemade bait:
Thoroughly mix one part borax with 3 parts powdered sugar.
Fill tiny containers (such as bottle caps) with this mixture and place them where you suspect ants are entering your house.
If you see trails of ants, place small containers of the mixture directly in their path. This prevents most of them from traveling all around your house if they have easy access to this sugary concoction.
If you have pets or kids who might get into this powdery mixture, try this instead:
Mix one cup warm water with ½ cup sugar and 3 tablespoons borax.
Soak it up with cotton balls and place them in shallow dishes near ant trails.
It is important to resist the urge to kill all the ants you see. They will carry the bait back to the nest, unable to differentiate between the borax and sugar, and the borax particles will eventually kill the entire colony. The more bait carried back to the colony, the less ants you will have.
Other ways to get rid of ants naturally
Spray vinegar near baseboards, in any cracks, and on countertops where they may be walking. You can allow vinegar to dry on surfaces or wipe with a clean cloth – this eliminates their chemical trail and will deter some of the stragglers. Repeat several times a day.
Some ants like protein and grease. Mix a spoonful of peanut butter with 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1 teaspoon of borax. Using a plastic straw, tap the end into the mixture repeatedly until the straw is full of the mixture. Cut the straw into 3cm pieces and place them next to ant trails.
Put a few drops of peppermint essential oil on a cotton ball and place in areas ants are crawling around.
Sprinkle cinnamon (being careful not to get it on items that will stain) near entry points.
Some ants dislike baby powder. Sprinkle around perimeter of house or indoors where ants are entering your house.
Rub a little Vaseline near the areas they are entering the house.
National Water Week is popping up again in the third week of October. The theme for 2018 is ‘Water for me, Water for all’, and is aimed at encouraging young people and the wider community to think about how we use water on a day-to-day basis and how we can protect it so we have it in the future.
Water usage is a particularly topical conversation in Australia, and more specifically, in Queensland at the moment, where drought is plaguing our shires. Currently 58.1% of the state is a drought-declared shire. Additionally, with a drier-than-average spring approaching, it is become more and more vital that we save water in all ways that we can.
We have compiled some tips from the Queensland Government Water Initiative to help you save water in your own home…
Up to 16 per cent of household water is flushed down the toilet. The following tips can reduce the amount of water used and in turn help reduce your water bills.
Don’t flush needlessly. Use the half-flush option on dual flush systems and never flush items other than toilet paper down the toilet.
Replace your older-style toilet suite with a 4-star WELS Scheme dual-flush system. This can save up to 8 litres of water with every flush.
Use tank water to flush. Talk to your plumber about having your rainwater tank internally plumbed to your toilet.
A standard shower can use 20 litres of water per minute, and accounts for up to 24 per cent of household water use.
Install a water-efficient shower head. A WELS Scheme 3-star rated shower head will use no more than 9 litres of water per minute.
Take a shorter shower. Shorter showers not only save water but help reduce the amount of energy associated with heating the water.
Insulate your hot water pipes. This means you won’t need to wait as long for the hot water to flow through—saving you both water and energy.
Make sure your hot water system thermostat is not set too high.
Use a bucket to catch water while the shower warms up. You can then reuse this water on your garden.
Selecting the right washing machine is the best way to save water and energy. Choose a washing machine with a 4-star WELS Scheme rating or better; you could use up to 50 per cent less water.
There are a number of other ways you can save water in the laundry.
Try not to use your washing machine every day. Instead, sort clothes and wash bigger loads less frequently.
Pre-treat stains to limit the need to rewash.
When adjusting warm water tap flow, always turn the hot water down rather than the cold water up.
Use small amounts of water if washing clothes by hand and reuse this water in your garden.
Make sure that everyone picks up and sorts the clothes they wear each day so clean clothes don’t get washed by mistake.
Divert grey water from your washing machine for immediate use on your garden (except vegetables).
Water use in the kitchen contributes up to 13 per cent of total household consumption. There are many ways to save water in the kitchen.
Use the dishwasher with a full load. Running a full load in a water-efficient dishwasher uses less water than washing dishes by hand.
A 5-star WELS Scheme rated water efficient dishwasher uses as little as 7 litres of water.
Scrape your dishes and soak your pots and pans to remove food rather than rinsing them under running water.
If you have two sinks, half-fill the second sink with rinsing water. If you only have one sink, rinse the washed dishes in a pan of water.
Rinse vegetables in a bowl and then use the water on your garden.
Don’t use running water to defrost food. Place your frozen food in the fridge to thaw overnight.
Store drinking-water in the fridge—running the tap until it’s cool wastes up to 15 litres a minute.
Encourage children to empty water bottles onto the garden or pot plants instead of down the sink.
As pool and spa owners, you can reduce water consumption in several ways.
Use a pool cover. A properly fitted pool cover can stop up to 97 per cent of evaporation and reduce the amount of chemicals required to treat the water.
Check your pool for leaks. A tiny leak could result in a large amount of water loss.
Build your pool in an area that is shaded during the hottest parts of the day. This will reduce evaporation and help avoid the sun’s harsh rays while you swim.
Maintain the correct chemical balance in your pool and clean it regularly. Top up your pool with rainwater runoff.
With Storm Season approaching, we have compiled some tips to ensure you and your home stay safe this summer.
During storm season in Brisbane, clogged gutters are some of the most common culprits of damage to
property. Ensuring your gutters are clear of debris is a key factor in safeguarding your house.
Full gutters can cause drainage problems resulting in an overflow of water escaping onto your property; and eventually can cause the gutter to fall off due to the weight of the water.
Full gutters can also cause the water to become stagnant creating the perfect breeding ground
for mosquito larvae to hatch. Stagnant water can also cause an unwanted odor.
Water pooling can also cause your gutters to prematurely rust.
If you believe that your gutters might be blocked or the gutters in your rental property are blocked, please email : email@example.com so that we can potentially arrange for this to be attended to. PLEASE NOTE: Please do not climb on ladders to assess the gutters.
If you have any trees on your property (even ones that don’t directly hang over your home),
ask yourself these questions:
Does it appear that the branches need to be pruned?
Is there a large amount of deadwood on these trees?
Do any trees appear to be unstable?
Are there any trees/branches growing into POWER LINES?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, please CONTACT firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can have a professional address the issues, ensuring you and your family stay safe this summer.
Important Updates and Contact Numbers
It is very useful to keep a list of emergency contacts, including the SES and Energex, in the case of a fallen powerline or power outage. The Bureau of Meteorology also has great updates on any weather patterns that could affect you, visit bom.com.au
It’s spring. The sun is shining, the flowers are in bloom, the birds are chirping, the grass is green, and you are feeling considerably more cheerful as the cold months have come to an end. With the bloom of the jacarandas comes a reinvigoration in the property market for those on a house hunt. Not only does spring give you a great excuse to declutter and commence a spring clean, but it also provides the perfect environment for an open home.
If you are considering selling your property this spring and wondering how you should prepare your home to sell in the property sales boom, we’ve compiled some useful tips to ensure you’re ready!
Probably the easiest and cheapest alteration you could make to your home is to declutter it.
Reducing the number of personal items filling your home not only allows for a cleaner feel but it also allows visitors to envisage themselves living in the property, not to mention the wonders it does for your closet and cupboard space!
Embrace the spring clean
Ensure your windows and mirrors are sparkling, wash the curtains and blinds, have your carpets professionally cleaned, polish tap fittings, hardwood floors and door knobs, rake the lawn and trim the bushes. Attention to detail is vital in making your home look its best (and only requires a bit of one-on-one time with the dustpan and brush)!
Set your home apart from the rest
The finer details might not be glaringly obvious to a buyer; however, these small touches are a cost-effective way of setting your home above other options on the market.
Set out fresh flowers or freshly clipped lilac branches, integrate towels, throws and pillows in complementary colours throughout your house, offer an outside mat for guests to clean their shoes, fill the sink with ice to chill bottled water for visitors or set out individually wrapped treats in cellophane or ribbon. Each of these small gestures are not only cost-effective but will ensure your guests feel at ease in your home.
Use a Real Estate Agent
As buyers and sellers spring into action, the property sales race is likely to be very tight. Utilising a real estate agent will help you to be at the front of the pack. At Arrive we have an amazing team of professionals ready to value your house, suggest a niche method of marketing tailored to perfectly suit you and you home, and to offer you a suite of services to mold your house into an irresistible property.
If you are interested in finding out more on how to sell your home this spring, please feel free to contact us at Arrive. We have a number of professionals with a wealth of skills and knowledge, ready to help you in your sales journey!
The Ultimate Guide To Brisbane School Holidays This September
The ultimate guide to school holidays this September…
With school holidays just around the corner, you might be scrambling to keep the kids occupied. But fear not! We have compiled a list, from the Brisbane Kids webpage, of our picks of the best activities to keep the little ones entertained all day long…
THE GRUFFALO – Gardens Theatre, QUT Gardens Point
CDP are bringing The Gruffalo to life just for Brisbane Kids during the summer school holidays. Based on the award winning children’s book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, the audience will be introduced to 3 not so nice characters as Mouse makes his journey through the deep dark woods to find some hazelnuts to eat.
From Saturday 22 September until Sunday 7 October, there is plenty to keep the kids entertained at our activities held in the store entrance across from Småland.
Kids can make their own paper animals, paper plate and peg craft. Don’t forget about our Spring Treasure Hunt which can be collected at the entrance, a reward to be enjoyed is available to those to finish it.
FREE INFLATABLE LASER TAG – Indooroopilly Shopping Centre
Indooroopilly Shopping Centre’s third floor will be glowing these school holidays as the Centre hosts FREE glow in the dark, inflatable laser tag. For those who think they have played laser tag before, Brisbane Kids will be excited to know that Indooroopilly is adding extra elements to their laser tag zone so it is not your usual run of the mill laser tag, the Centre will impress with a glow in the dark labyrinth, full of inflatable objects to hide behind with smoke machines and laser beams to provide fantastic entertainment for the whole family.
CITY OF LOGAN’S IMAGINATION CHILDREN’S FESTIVAL – Logan
There’s 170 activities over 16 days that are free or low cost fun for children 0 – 12 years including a muddy wonderland, ninja obstacle course, cooking, dancing, art and craft and even how to make robots work.
When: 22 September – 7 October
Where: Various Venues in Logan City
Cost: Mix of FREE and ticketed events- Bookings required for some events
Jellyfish Bloom – a spectacular lighting installation comprised of enormous, iridescent jellyfish – has floated into the Gold Coast’s favourite shopping destination Robina Town Centre as a free experience for locals to enjoy until 30th September 2018.
ALICE IN WONDERLAND – Brisbane Arts Theatre, Petrie Terrace
Prepare for a curious adventure in the much-loved Alice in Wonderland. Featuring all of your favourite characters, the Brisbane Art Theatres presentation of Alice in Wonderland is sure to be a hit for the whole family.
Date: 22 September – 10 November 2018 ( every Saturdays, selected Sundays and Tuesday to Friday (Sept/Oct school holidays) @ 11am
Time: 2pm weekends and 11am weekdays during the school holidays
For more great ideas visit www.brisbanekids.com.au, particularly the Brisbane Kids Event Calendar which is a great resource for everything happening in our city for the rest of the year that your children will love!
Australia is home to somewhere between 600,000 and 700,000 fauna, many of which can be found nowhere else in the world. Around 84% of our plants, 83% of our mammals, and 45% of our birds are endemic to Australia (or found exclusively in Australia only). As humans, we depend largely on animals for produce such as foods and medicines that keep us alive. Not only this, but we rely on much of our ecosystems for recreation and tourism. Biodiversity keeps the world spinning around.
With the ever-increasing pressures of climate change, reef deterioration and the rise in endangerment of many animals and insects, it is becoming more and more imperative that we make some changes to our lifestyles to keep our beautiful world, and the creatures that live on it, alive.
How can you help to protect Australia’s biodiversity?
The Australian Government’s Department of the Environment and Energy has some great tips to preserve our local flora and fauna.
Generate a natural habitat in your garden – research plants that are native to your area and create a sanctuary for local birds and other wildlife.
Pull up any weeds that have popped up in your garden – educate yourself on what flora are native to your area, what appears to be a harmless plant could be a weed with the ability to cause significant damage if it spreads to bushland.
Be a responsible pet owner – ensure your cats and dogs are de-sexed, and if you can no longer keep them, do not release them to the wild.
Reduce, reuse and recycle – consider ways to reduce the amount of rubbish that ends up in landfill and the waterways. Many things can now be recycled.
Start your own compost bin – organic matter like vegetable peelings which usually ends up landfill is great for your garden. Start composting and you can reduce the need for chemicals and fertilizers in the garden and improve the health of your soil.
Only put water down the drains – Oils and chemicals may start at the kitchen sink but end up in our waterways and seas and can have detrimental impacts on flora and fauna living in streams and rivers. Instead of using commercial cleaning chemicals try using white vinegar and bicarbonate of soda.