Miners pay $90,000 in rent in Queensland towns

RENTS: Miners are paying up to $90,000 a year to rent a home.

THE mining industry may be creating massive wages in central Queensland but landlords are lining up with their hands out asking for rents as high as $90,000 a year for a modest home in Dysart.

The cost is driving many companies into the controversial fly-in, fly-out schemes or putting workers in temporary camps, causing huge social problems in some towns.
The Real Estate Institute of Queensland found Dysart had the state's highest median rent of $1200 a week for a house, but this was collated over the average rents for all houses.
Current listings show a four-bedroom house in Dysart can fetch as much as $1800 a week in rent while the median rent for homes in suburban Forest Lake, in Brisbane's south west, is $362 a week.
For central Queensland landlords, it's a dream come true with an investment return of almost 15 per cent a year but there is so little housing in towns like Moranbah that mine workers are now "hot-bedding", which means sharing a room with someone on an alternating shift.
The REIQ said state-wide market conditions over the past 12 months resulted in better returns for investors because house prices had generally softened and rents remained stable.
"The natural disasters in Queensland . . . no doubt impacted buyer confidence, however February saw an increase in the number of dwellings financed across all buyer segments," REIQ chairman Pamela Bennett said.
The union representing coalminers, the CFMEU, has campaigned heavily on the destruction of mining communities through fly-in, fly-out operations. Yesterday it described the rents as a disgrace.
CFMEU state secretary Jim Valery said it was not only miners affected because towns could not attract council workers, emergency workers or even bank staff because they could not afford rents.