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Should I move house in 2024? The rising costs of renting, buying & building

Guides  |  Advice

Renting a home, buying or building a new one is a significant decision. In 2024, with costs continually heading upwards and availability limited, it can leave you asking, “Should I move house or not?” Australia is experiencing a surge in rental costs, house prices have risen and there have been some disruptions in the building industry. As rents continue to rise and building companies face financial challenges, many individuals and families may be contemplating whether it is the right time to move house.

Let’s explore the current situation with insights into what’s happening now to help you make an informed decision on whether or not it’s the right time to move or not.

The rising costs of renting: 

Over the last few years, there has been a concerning, and some might say stressful, trend of soaring rental costs across Australia. According to The Guardian, the rents in Australian capital cities have witnessed rent increases of 13% or more in the past year with further increases predicted. 

National rental prices has risen 11.5% over the last year. In regional areas, rents are starting to stabilise but there is still low availability and many report that the rent increases over the last few years are causing financial stress.

Source: Australian capital city rents up 13% over year as further hikes predicted for 2024 amid housing shortage

Source: Rents highlight Australia's economic Achilles heel, but it's not what you might think

The impact on renters 

The recent escalating rental costs create significant challenges for renters. With the national vacancy rate extremely low, finding affordable housing has become increasingly difficult. This in itself will have you questioning if you should move or not.

And as demand continues to outstrip the supply of rental properties, prospective tenants face fierce competition and limited options. It’s one of the reasons people need our services as interstate removalists

Average rental increases of 8-10% in both 2022 and 2023 have placed additional financial burdens on renters along with increasing property prices. You may be considering a move because your rent has increased but will you find something better elsewhere? 

Is it the right time to buy a house?

Much of the answer to the question depends on your situation - your ability to borrow, buy, current income and location. While we thought that housing prices would slow down, and in some places, they have developed some stability, they seem to be always going up!

Many are buying houses at the moment because of a lack of other options - finding a rental is very difficult. But it now comes with the increased burden of higher rates of borrowing.

What about building a new house?

Family deciding to build a house in 2023

The building industry in Australia has been dealing with its own set of challenges. A number of big and small building companies have collapsed over the last few years, leaving people out of pocket and adding to this housing crisis. The cost of building has also been a concern for the last few years as material prices have been increasing along with supply issues. 

However, there are signs of hope as supply chain disruptions are easing, resulting in reduced material costs such as steel and shipping. The big issue now lies in the shortage of skilled labour in the construction industry.

This shortage can impact costs as people pay more for experienced employees - or any employees - and also increases the potential for delaying the end date for a house build. So if you build a house, it still may take a long time to complete it!

So should you move house in 2024? Key things to consider:

With the costs of renting, buying and building still rising, it’s worth sitting down and really considering if moving house now is the right decision for you. Here are some of the important things to evaluate:

  1. Finances: what’s your budget like for housing costs? Can you handle the rental increase involved in renting a new place (or staying where you are)? Or would it be better to build (or buy) a new home and go that route? What are your long-term financial goals and how do they sit with both your plans for the future and the reality of renting now?
  2. Your job stability and future career growth: it’s worth thinking about how stable your current job is. Are you staying in a position that feels unstable or might you move to a job that offers more stability? In that case, moving may be helpful and worthwhile. As costs and rents have been increasing, would it be better to live in a place that allows more potential career growth and so an increased salary? If your work allows for remote options, it may be worth exploring areas with more affordable housing options.
  3. Lifestyle and location: how close do you need to be to work, schools or public transportation? What about nature, walking paths or the beach? Will moving to a different area enhance your quality of life? Would it be worth paying more for? Or are you considering paying more for a location that lacks some of the important things you’d like in your life? 
  4. Keep up to date with market conditions: while you’re considering moving, renting and building, it’s important to stay informed about what’s happening. Are rents decreasing in specific locations? Is the building industry recovering? Are costs going down? Watching prices and paying attention to the news will help. 

So should you move? If you can and want to, there are definitely reasons that would make it worthwhile. Firstly, start with a plan, understanding what might be hard, and what you can get around. The trickiest thing may be moving out of one place straight into another. We can help with storage options for in-between places if that’s needed. So you may need to be clever and have a backup plan, but as interstate removalists, we help people move every day so it’s possible for you as well.

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