THE rise in Rotorua property values shows no signs of slowing down, with a number of suburbs experiencing big gains.
QV's quarterly analysis of North Island property values shows Ngongotaha experienced the biggest increase in values of any Rotorua suburb in the three months to December.
The median value of a Ngongotaha property increased 5.3 per cent to an estimated value of $283,600 in the last quarter and 11.9 per cent for the year.
Data showed Lynmore was the most expensive suburb in the last quarter of 2015, with an estimated median value of $440,900. The value of a Lynmore property increased 4.1 per cent over the quarter and 10.3 per cent throughout the year.
The cheapest suburb was Fordlands with the average property being valued at $119,550, but the suburb saw the highest increase in property values for the year with a 17.7 per cent rise.
Ngongotaha resident Ann Izzillo has lived in the suburb for the past 12 years and has just sold her home.
She said it did not surprise her how quickly buyers snapped it up.
"We put it on the market and the first day of our open home it sold just like that."
Ms Izzillo said Ngongotaha had everything one needed and was a short drive from the city centre.
"If it's not rush hour, it only takes about 12 minutes to get into town, but the village itself has everything one needs. All the shop owners are lovely and obliging and the community itself is very caring.
"You don't live in each other's pockets but I knew if I ever needed anything, they would be there to help me."
She said the rural setting would likely be another drawcard for potential buyers and she had not regretted moving to Ngongotaha for "a millionth-of-a-second".
"One of the things I loved the most was when you came back from town it felt like you were back in the country - I think that will be a big selling point to many looking to buy."
Ross Stanway, chief executive of Eves and Bayleys Real Estate, said Ngongotaha was the perfect example of people discovering good value-for-money properties in suburbs "off their radar".
"In the current market we are seeing prices increasing across the board but people still have a fixed amount of money to buy so they are turning to suburbs that may have previously been off their radar.
"Ngongotaha is the perfect example of a village that ticks all the boxes, but hasn't been a suburb widely sought in the past. People are starting to see it as an attractive area to live and the property values are a reflection of that.
Ian McDowell, of McDowell Professionals, said Ngongotaha was playing "catch up" with other popular suburbs around the city.
"For a long time Ngongotaha has had fairly low values but now we are seeing that increase as people realise what a beautiful little village Ngongotaha is."
He said investors would be playing a big part in the increase in property values in Fordlands.
"It is a good area for investors because they get a good return on rental," Mr McDowell said.
Ray White Rotorua co-owner and principal Anita Martelli said Ngongotaha had beautiful lakeside properties that were selling for "a fraction of the price of properties in other suburbs with similar lake views".
"People are seeing they can purchase a lakeside property at a really good price and also like the idea of being a little out of town."
She said her team had received a number of inquiries for Ngongotaha properties.
"We have noticed interest picking up for the area so the QV figures don't come as much of a surprise."