Gisborne police have a homicide inquiry underway after a woman in her early 50s died at a house in the suburb of Riverdale this afternoon.

Police were called to the house just after 2pm.

"We are treating this as a homicide inquiry at this stage pending the outcome of a post-mortem examination," said Detective Senior Sergeant David Greig.

"We are still piecing together the circumstances involved in the woman's death. At this stage those circumstances are unclear."


Police have cordoned off the property and it will be under police guard overnight.

The woman's body remained under a tarpaulin on the front lawn of the property.

"We anticipate her body will be removed sometime this evening," Mr Greig said.

He said the woman had been visiting the house and she did not live there.

"We are speaking to a number of people who were at the house as part of our inquiry," he said.