Kirsty Wynn

Kirsty Wynn is a senior reporter at the Herald on Sunday.

Inflated property values in Auckland

Similar homes elsewhere in New Zealand are on the market for less than half the price

Taryn and Ben van Meygaarden are selling to move closer to Taryn's work and hope to buy a bigger house for them and their sons, Adam, 3, and Luke, 1. Photo / Rhys Palmer
Taryn and Ben van Meygaarden are selling to move closer to Taryn's work and hope to buy a bigger house for them and their sons, Adam, 3, and Luke, 1. Photo / Rhys Palmer

These modest homes show just how far Auckland house prices have skyrocketed beyond the rest of the country.

The value of an average home in Auckland has hit $705,867, according to QV's residential price index.

This week the Herald on Sunday looked at an Auckland house which sold for $712,000, then located similar houses — with similar-sized properties — around New Zealand and found prices ranged from $139,000 in Gisborne to $210,000 in Whanganui and $325,000 in Whangarei.

In the East Auckland suburb of St Johns, 45 Felton Matthew Ave sold at auction for $712,000. The vendors moved to San Francisco and it was bought by an Asian investor.

The single-level, three-bedroom house sold by Bayleys' agent Larry Sewell is on a 607sqm flat site. Sewell described the house as a perfect first home or investment property with great flow, raised vegetable gardens and mature trees.

The style of property, with the same number of bedrooms and bathrooms, on the same land is a mirror image of many available throughout New Zealand — but the price tags show how far Auckland property prices have boomed.

At 145 Hukanui Rd in the Chartwell suburb of Hamilton, Taryn and Ben van Meygaarden are selling to move closer to Taryn's work and hope to buy a bigger house for them and their two sons, Adam, 3, and Luke, 1.

They couldn't understand how people could afford prices in Auckland. Their three-bedroom house sits on 619sqm and has an asking price of $340,000-plus. It is close to good schools, Chartwell shopping centre, and transport. Ben is a high school teacher and Taryn is a veterinarian and said Auckland was way out of their reach.

"There is such a huge difference in house values between Hamilton and Auckland," Ben said.

"I am originally from Auckland. We would never be able to afford there now."

The couple earn the same amount they would in Auckland but their mortgage repayments are a fraction of what they would be if they moved north. "We also spend less on petrol and it is easier getting around. There are no half-hour waits getting on to the motorway."

In Gisborne, the same style house on the same size land has an asking price of $139,000. The 1960s house at 49 Ida Rd boasts new floor and ceiling insulation, new carpet and a fireplace with a wetback.

Real estate agent Melissa McBeal listed a new driveway, big bedrooms, and an open-plan living area as some of the positive features.

At 8 Jeffares Place in Taradale, a refurbished three-bedroom home on 656sq m has an asking price of $300,000. It has a heat pump, ventilation system, log fire and a new bathroom and kitchen. It is within walking distance to schools, parks and shops.

This week, the Reserve Bank announced loan-value ratio (LVR) restrictions may be scrapped by the end of the year.

Harcourts chief executive Hayden Duncan said the restrictions had little effect on overall prices but had temporarily made it harder for first-home buyers to break into the property market.

- Herald on Sunday

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