Owing to Queensland's strong economy and abundance of jobs, it is attracting skilled workers from all over the world, particularly to Brisbane, where demand for housing is sky high as a result.
Expats looking for accommodation can make their task a great deal easier by having a clear, yet somewhat flexible, idea of what they're looking for in terms of location, price and size.
Types of accommodation in Brisbane
There are a few different types of accommodation in Brisbane. These include apartments (known locally as 'flats'), units (small modern houses), and traditional ‘Queenslanders’ (one or two-storey weatherboard houses with verandas).
The majority of properties are rented unfurnished, and even the most expensive rental properties rarely come with built-in white label appliances, such as a fridge or washing machine.
Finding accommodation in Brisbane
Newcomers in Brisbane should begin looking for accommodation as soon as possible. It's often best to have short-term housing lined up before arriving in Australia, and then to look for something more permanent once in the country. Due to their high demand, city properties are snapped up quickly and it may take a bit of time to find and get approval to rent the perfect home.
When it comes to house hunting, expats can either go it alone or enlist the help of an agent. Resources such as local newspapers and online property portals can be useful for those searching independently. Alternatively, estate agents can make the rental process simpler as they generally have good knowledge of the city and access to property listings before they go on the open market.
Renting accommodation in Brisbane
Property viewings in Brisbane are usually at set times and are done in groups. If the house on show is well priced, expats should expect to be viewing it with as many as a dozen other people. To avoid the crowds, it's best to go to weekday viewings during working hours rather than after-hours or over weekends.
To apply for a rental, extensive references paired with proof-of-identity documentation are usually required. Since the market moves fast, expats should research and prepare what they will need ahead of time so they are ready to submit at any moment.
Rent for accommodation in Brisbane is payable monthly or fortnightly, and rental listings may list the per-week price rather than the per-month price, so expats should be sure to double-check if a particular figure seems too good to be true. Utility bills are usually not included in the rental price and are the responsibility of the tenant.
►For more extensive information on documentation requirements, see Accommodation in Australia
"Houses here are incredible. You can choose older properties that need work, run down properties on large plots that are ripe for knocking down and rebuilding, houses on larger plots that are great value or you can buy a smaller plot from a development and have a builder put up a house for you." Read about British expat Karen's experiences in Brisbane.
Are you an expat living in Brisbane?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Brisbane. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
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