Inside The Private Facebook Group Where People Get ‘Extorted’ To Live In Bondi

The summer squeeze.

Inside The Private Facebook Group Where People Get ‘Extorted’ To Live In Bondi

Image: Getty

Bondi rent is extortionate at the best of times. But some users in a private Facebook Group seem to be taking things to the next level, advertising their rooms at astronomical prices in the hope that newbies to the city will snatch them up for the ~lifestyle~.

Local Facebook groups are institutions – places where people share news, events, jobs, accommodation, garage sales and more.

There have been a few grouchy comments, however, in one private Bondi-based group recently, after a spate of people trying to flog some incredibly expensive rooms for rent.

Though it might not be true ‘extortion’ (there’s no blackmail at play), the prices of some of the rooms on offer are truly absurd (some of the worst offenders appear to have now been deleted after some pushback in the comments section).

To give you an idea, take a look at the following post, which features an Eastern Suburbs resident advertising a “huge room” for “couples or 3 girls” for $650 a week for two people, or $750 a week for three people.

The room is one block away from Westfield and two blocks away from the train station.

Source: Facebook

As for how “huge” the room is, check out the image below. Though it’s true that it’s large enough for two beds and a fridge, it seems quite a grim offering for such a high price. Though we ought to take into account inflation, and the fact that this is Bondi, it still seems quite an optimistic price. And this is by no means the most wildly priced room we’ve seen.

Source: Facebook

It’s not just ultra-expensive rooms either. There are also witty comments where people mock some of the more ambitiously priced offerings… such as our next exhibition: A guy trying to rent out a 2 bed, 2 bath place for $1,750 per week.

Source: Facebook

This saw one commenter chime in writing: “I won’t pay anything less than $2,500 a week, sorry.” Classic. The other funny thing you see is those who accidentally brag about going to Europe while putting their room up for rent.

“Hi everyone,” one member of the group wrote. “I’m renting my room and office out in Bondi from the 10th of October to the 9th of November while I’m in Europe. The dates are flexible.”

Source: Facebook

Not an outrageous post, but still: it gives you a bit more of an idea of the group’s ~vibe~. Speaking of vibes, to get a better idea of what it’s like to look for a place in Bondi at the moment, DMARGE spoke to Agathe Valabregue, a French expat who is on the hunt to find a room to rent in Bondi with her partner. She told us she didn’t actually think the pricing was (on the whole) unfair, but that she had seen one misleading ad.

Valabregue told DMARGE: “At the moment I feel like there is a lot of people like me searching for accommodation in Bondi, that [Bondi] is the place to be in the incoming summer.”

“I’ve been in Sydney since June. I think the pricing is fair enough for the environment/commodities but for a couple (which we are with my partner) it almost impossible to find something, I’ve come across so many ads that would have suited us perfectly but every time it’s ‘no couple.’ It’s frustrating but I understand.”

“I’ve been looking for about a month now. I think I would consider Paddington or a little far away from the Eastern suburbs if I can’t find anything. I haven’t found anything yet, but I’m waiting for some answers from 1 or 2 people. I’m not very hopeful [though].”

Valabregue also told DMARGE that not all advertisements she has seen have been accurate, explaining: “I have found one misleading ad about a flat in Bondi Junction, the woman was weird like I was ready to move in and she wasn’t answering back despite needing a flatmate urgently and saying things like ‘nice couple’ and ‘nice message,’ stuff like that, so that was a no for me.”

Finally, to give you a further idea of some of the other hilarious stuff going on in the online marketplace for Bondi rentals, take a look at the comments section of a recent post, in which two “best friends who have lived together for four years” said they were “looking for a male to join [their] lovely home.”

Though they didn’t include a price, many suspicious Facebook users chimed into the comments section with all sorts of conspiracy theories. Some reckoned the pair were the two girls who took out Keanu Reeves, others suggested it seemed like a trap.

“I sleep in the backyard if the room is already taken,” one wrote, while another said: “🙄🤦🏻‍♂️ the definition of creep bait 😂 What about the actual room? Would like to know where I spend 1/3 of my life 🤷‍♂️.” Many others jokingly tagged their friends.

Source: Facebook

All just another day in the life of Bondi (or, as the case may be in the post above, Beaconsfield)…

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