In the world’s big financial centers — from New York to Toronto to London to Sydney — rents for city apartments are plunging.
International students who normally bolster demand are stuck at home and young renters — the most mobile group in real estate — are finding fewer reasons to pay a premium to live in what is, for now, no longer the center of things.
’’You’re daft if you aren’t negotiating lower rent right now,’’ said Tim Lawless, Asia Pacific head of research for data provider CoreLogic Inc. “Supply is high and occupancy has fallen off a cliff.”
With remote working in vogue for everyone from banks to tech companies, and the quirky shops and bars that made living in a city fun curtailed, the equation about where to live is changing. And so is the balance of power between landlords and tenants.
Christine Chung, 26, is one of those taking advantage. She just managed to negotiate a 9% drop in rent for the house she shares with three others in Sydney’s trendy Enmore neighborhood about 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) from the city center. It wasn’t easy — the property agent spent the best part of five weeks dodging calls — before the landlord agreed to reduce the rent from A$895 ($638) a week to A$810. Rents are normally quoted in weekly terms in Australia.
“I’ll push for another rent reduction at the end of the lease,’’ Chung said. “The market has changed.”