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Vacancy Rates Measurement

Posted by Nicholas Warren on March 08, 2000 at 01:47:28:

Can someone please advise me of how your vacancy rate is calculated in New York?

I am the policy officer of the Tenants' Union of New South Wales (Australia) and this issue is very topical for us now. At present our only vacancy rate is published by the Real Estate Agents' industry group - from a voluntary survey of members - and we think the figures are way dubious. We would like to be able to advocate a better, proven method.

I was very interested to see an article in your newsletter that informed me that a vacancy rate of below five percent means declaration of a housing emergency and an extension of rent regulation. Here we have not seen a vacancy rate that high in living memory. Our rate has not been over 3% vacancy for the last decade. This has not led to any real interest from our politicians - in fact government support for affordable housing is being withdrawn, housing-related poverty is going up and (particularly in Sydney) rent increases are often at multiples of the underlying rate of inflation. In the quarter October to December 1999, rent increases in Sydney were generally from 10 - 20% per annum.

Anyway, any assistance you can give will be much appreciated.


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