In a year that has witnessed property prices cool and sales drop off, little has changed with the widespread unaffordability of Auckland homes.

One-income families, single people and those in rental properties continue to be the hardest hit by the Super City's higher prices.

House values in the wider Auckland region increased 1.6 per cent to an average value of $1.05 million in the three months to January 2018, the latest quarterly QV Property report showed.

Fifty-four Auckland suburbs experienced a drop in house values in 2017 with the largest decrease, of 5.3 per cent ($78,324), in Dannemora.

Advertisement

The next largest decrease in value was in Rosehill, which saw a 5.2 per cent drop ($35,434), followed by Waterview which dropped 4.7 per cent ($44,075).

Despite this ease in prices CoreLogic head of research Nick Goodall said it had done little to ease unaffordability.

"Slight drops in value have not changed the view of widespread unaffordability in Auckland where 106 suburbs are still valued at over $1m."

House values in the wider Auckland region increased 1.6 per cent to an average value of $1.05 million in the three months to January 2018, the latest quarterly QV Property report showed. Photo / File
House values in the wider Auckland region increased 1.6 per cent to an average value of $1.05 million in the three months to January 2018, the latest quarterly QV Property report showed. Photo / File

There were also four suburbs where the estimated median was more than $2m.

At the other end of the market, outside the apartment-rich suburbs of Auckland Central and Grafton, there were only four suburbs with an estimated median value of less than $600,000 - Wellsford, Manukau, Otara and Clendon Park.

QV national spokeswoman Andrea Rush said areas where prices had dipped off were areas that had seen a lot of recent developments.

"New builds that were selling for $1.4m are now selling for around $1.2m and bare sections that were selling for $800,000 are now selling in the $600,000s."

Despite the overall trend of a cooler market there were still patches of strong growth.
Particularly strong growth was noted on Waiheke - where popular Onetangi Bay had its estimated median value rise in double digits, up 16.6 per cent ($199,101) in the past year.

Around the rest of the country Rush said areas that were the slowest to see values rise, such as Whanganui, Gisborne and Opotiki, had in the past year seen the greatest growth of more than 20 per cent.

She said Hawke's Bay, Wairarapa and Northland also continued to see good growth in value.

She said higher prices in the bigger cities were pushing people out into the regions.

"High prices in main centres including Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga and Wellington have continued to lead many people to relocate out of the main centres."

The quarterly QV Property Report is compiled using CoreLogic data that estimates the value based on recent sales of comparable properties in the immediate area along with a number of other statistical factors.

A government-commissioned report out last month, A Stocktake of New Zealand's Housing, showed home ownership rates had fallen to the lowest level in 60 years, while house price inflation over the past five years had been around 30 per cent - incomes have grown by about half that rate.

The Government has promised to deliver 100,000 affordable homes over the next decade - half of which would be in Auckland - in an effort to increase supply and improve affordability.

Chief executive of Mangere budgeting and family services Darryl Evans says the promises were there but "now we got to see some action".

He said the high housing prices were also trickling into the rental market and more low-income families were struggling.

"House prices have gone up, so landlords are trying to cover mortgage payments and rents go up.

"The reality is most people can't afford the high rental costs, many aren't able to sustain properties longer term."

Mortgage broker Bruce Patten said the loosening of lending restrictions that saw many banks lend up to 90 per cent on the purchase of a new house had made things easier.

But he said banks were also being cautious and reeling in how much they loaned.

"The good thing is because prices have stabilised it is becoming more affordable," he said. "It's as affordable as it has been in the last three years."

But Patten said buying a house, in Auckland, was still out of reach for many.

"For a single income family, or a single income, it's still way out of reach."

Auckland's most expensive suburbs

Herne Bay $2.6m

Saint Marys Bay $2.26m

Remuera $2.1m

Stanley Pt $2.03m

Campbells Bay $1.98m

Auckland's least expensive suburbs

Auckland Central $524,700
Wellsford $535,000
Grafton $535,700
Manukau $547,700
Otara $550,600