According to The Australian Financial Review, Andrew Sambrook has boosted returns on his apartment in Sydney's Bondi Beach by 10 per cent through Airbnb after he ditched the rental market.
He's not alone. New data from the Urban Housing Lab at the University of Sydney shows Airbnb is drying up the supply of rental homes in desirable parts of Sydney as investors chase higher returns from travellers and tourists.
Airbnb listings of entire homes now exceeds the number of vacant rental properties in Sydney's central and eastern suburbs, and the income from these Airbnb properties is comparable to the median rents in those suburbs.
A paper by professors Nicole Gurran and Peter Phibbs at the University of Sydney shows in the Waverley council area – which include Sydney's popular beach suburbs Bondi, Bronte and Tamarama – there are 821 Airbnb listings of entire homes that are available for 90 days or more, compared to an average of 232 vacant rental homes.
In the City of Sydney there are 1268 listings of such Airbnb homes, compared to an average of 876 vacant rental homes.
The analysis also shows Airbnb landlords in these areas earn as much as traditional landlords, even though the Airbnb properties are likely to be occupied less frequently.
According to the data, Waverley landlords earned an average of $2947 a month for letting out entire homes on Airbnb, compared to the median rent of $2920 a month. In Sydney CBD, landlords earned an average of $2866 a month on Airbnb compared to the median rent of $2960 a month.
Professor Gurran said Airbnb appears to be absorbing vacant rental supply in popular inner-city suburbs.
Sambrook uses HeyTom, a property management start-up that looks after everything from guest booking to cleaning for a 20 per cent commission. (A real estate agent typically charges landlords an 8 per cent commission.)
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