Auckland property prices are rising rapidly but rents are heading in the opposite direction, unlike most other parts of New Zealand.

Rents dropped from $520 median in May to $500 this month, and only risen $1 in an entire year, according to an online real estate listings web site.

Nigel Jeffries, head of Trade Me Properties, said rents have only risen by a median $1 in the last year, while the average asking price for Auckland properties jumped $88,000.

"Auckland's median weekly rent had fallen from a record high of $520 in May and was up less than 20 per cent over the past five years," a Trade Me statement said.


The rental market across the rest of the country is very strong and tenants are paying a lot more on average now than they were a year ago, he said.

In the past year median weekly rents outside Auckland rose from $360/week to $380/week, he said amounting to about another $1000 more a year for tenants.

The Bay of Plenty and Manawatu recorded the biggest rent rises, up 20 per cent and 17 per cent annually. Wellington recorded significant growth in all house sizes but the Christchurch market remained subdued with weekly rents falling across small and medium-sized houses in the past month, Jeffries said.

"Auckland's two-speed property market continued in August. While the average asking price of property for sale in the city has jumped $88,000 in the last year, median weekly rents are up just $1 in the same period according to the latest Trade Me Property Rental Index," Trade Me said.

Jeffries explained more, saying tenants in Auckland continued to benefit from very stable rent levels

"Auckland's median weekly rent was $500 again this month, and we've seen rents hover around this figure most of this year. While landlords have seen the value of their properties increase markedly, it looks like it's been a challenge to leverage that via rental increases. That might be tough for landlords with hefty mortgages to contend with, but tenants will be pleased to have some respite," Jeffries said.