Auckland's controversial Unitary Plan appears to be driving speculation on land in areas earmarked for multi-storey housing.
One West Auckland property sold this week having gained in value more than 51 per cent, or almost $300,000, in just over a year.
Property records show 43 Astley Ave in New Lynn sold in March 2012 for $545,000 to Anita Marie Kirker and Max Keith Tongue.
The three-bedroom, one-bathroom 180sq m home on a 1012sq m section sold again this week for $831,000.
Competition from five parties in the auction room drove the bidding up.
Property commentator Olly Newland, whose first investment property was on Astley Ave, said the land was pushing the price up. Being able to subdivide a section was a huge incentive to buy, he said.
He said it seemed likely Kirker and Tongue had got a very good deal when they bought.
"Land is the problem, you have to pay through the nose to get it. Houses are plastic, you can build more, but land is immutable."
The Unitary Plan would take the minimum section size for Astley Ave to 350sq m, from 540sq m at present meaning it can comfortably be split in two. As a corner site it could also have two road entrances.
The buyers did not want to comment on their purchase.
Tongue said they were delighted with the result. "We bought this home with the view of tidying it up, then putting it back on the market. We'll do the same with the next one."
Tongue said they would buy their next property wherever they could see value. He said there were still opportunities for good deals, especially in the central suburbs where many people did not have time for a do-up.
"We try to pick the ones that there's not everyone all over."
The sales campaign was run by Jock Kooger and Murray Savage of Bayleys.