National median rents in New Zealand hit a fresh record of $475 in the month of April, an increase of 5.6 per cent from the same time last year.
According to the latest Trade Me Property Rental Index, rents outside of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, hit $400 for the first time, up 3.9 per cent from a year ago.
Trade Me head of property Nigel Jeffries said April bucked the seasonal trend of rents typically cooling throughout autumn and winter.
"This jump across the country has been caused by strong demand in a number of regions," Jeffries said. "The average number of enquiries on rental listings in Taranaki soared 122 per cent on last April and Southland topped the charts with enquiries up a staggering 164 per cent."
Demand has also pushed up rents in Taranaki by 2 per cent to $380 per week and in Southland the median weekly rent jumped to $270, up 10.2 per cent compared to a year ago.
"Around the remaining regions, rents in Hawke's Bay leaped 14.3 per cent to reach $400 per week and Bay of Plenty saw a new record after rising 4.4 per cent to $470 per week, just $10 less than Wellington," he said.
The only region that did not increase from last year was Manawatu/Whanganui, which remained unchanged from the year earlier.
Auckland rents hit all-time high
Median weekly rent in Auckland was recorded at $550, up 3.8 per cent.
"While rents went up $10 in March, we've seen demand drop back from summer's peak," Jeffries said.
The most popular property in April was a two bedroom house in Grey Lynn which received over 80 enquiries within the first two days on the site, he said.
While rents remain high across New Zealand, Jeffries said supply in Auckland was better accommodating demand.
"The supply and demand equation in Auckland is getting better for Kiwis on the hunt for a new rental property," he said. "The number of rental properties in the Super City is up 19 per cent on last April with the number of rental listings in Auckland City up a solid 35 per cent."
Rents in the Auckland City were found to be up $20 in April compared to last year.
Apartments for rent in Auckland hit a record high of $499 last month, climbing up 0.8 per cent.
Houses outside Auckland hit new highs
"The median weekly rent for houses outside Auckland reached a new high of $440 in April, up 4.8 per cent on the year prior," Jeffries said.
"This has been driven by record-breaking rents for houses in the Bay of Plenty, the Hawke's Bay, Southland and Waikato."
Median weekly rent in Bay of Plenty hit $480 in April, $430 in the Hawke's Bay, $425 in Waikato and $290 in Southland.
Rents in Christchurch remained unchanged since 2013 and those in Wellington continued to ease following a record high of $500 in January.