Rental market wakes up Demand rising as job prospects in city brighten
BIRDS h have been flocking to Deborah Carter since she was a child and now the wildlife warrior is doing her part to rehabilitate some of the sky’s most beautiful creatures.
Ms Carter, the founder of Fight for Flight in Townsville, needs the community’s help to continue her work rehabilitating injured or sick birds of prey.
“I’ve been working really hard for the last six or seven years, specialising in birds of prey,” she said.
“So many of these birds come in with poisoning or having been hit by cars, shot, a lot of different injuries.
“Rehab is really expensive – these guys eat meat, you can’t just give them a side of lamb or meat from Woolies, you have to feed them rats, and mice and quail, things they would eat naturally in the wild to give them an opportunity to survive, and I have to teach the young ones. I fund this by myself, last year it cost about $ 8000 to feed them. I love doing it, but these animals need to eat.”
NSW bird lover Shannon Gunn has jumped on the fundraising bandwagon, participating in the Sydney Harbour 10km run dressed as a bird.
To help Ms Carter continue her work saving the lives of these majestic birds, visit fight4flight. org AFTER five years of falling rents, Townsville’s rental market is on the move.
Projects including Adani’s Carmichael coal and rail development and the Townsville stadium, as well as mid- year movement of families, particularly among the Australian Defence Force, are driving demand. Adani is believed to be creating demand for more than 80 dwellings as staff relocate to continue project planning.
Economist Colin Dwyer said the city remained a “renter’s paradise” but the market was improving.
“With the stadium project, Adani and projects at the port, I think there’s likely to be an improvement in the vacancy rate in the CBD and inner- city area,” he said. While Mr Dwyer put Townsville’s residential vacancy rate at about 6 per cent, agents and property consultants Herron Todd White have it better at around 5 per cent, back from more than 6 per cent at the start of the year.
John Gribbin of John Gribbin Realty said the rental market was starting to improve on the back of improved demand from jobs in the mining and government sectors as well as falls in rent prices.
“It’s definitely on the improve and I think it will continue. We have every reason to be feeling a little bit more optimistic,” Mr Gribbin said.
Donna Lloyd, business development manager of Smith and Elliott Real Estate, said their rental management division had experienced its busiest period for several years.
“There have been a lot of Defence Force relocations,” Ms Lloyd said. “We are getting multiple applications for properties and take- up on first viewings which has not happened for a long time.”
Mr Dwyer said he expected the stadium project in particular to drive demand for 200 to 300 properties close to the development site in the city area. He said many workers would likely want to rent close to the project site.
“If the stadium creates a net migration of 20 to 30 per cent of its 2000- person workforce, then between 400 to 600 nonlocal workers may be required,” Mr Dwyer said.
Herron Todd White’s latest Townsville in Focus report put the trend median house rent at $ 315 a week and the median rent for units at $ 265 a week. The report says rents for both houses and units have fallen 11.7 per cent from five years ago.
WILDLIFE WARRIOR: Deborah Carter with Ford, a 15- year- old brown falcon.