Sale prices for property in Auckland's Eden Terrace have shot up 60 per cent this year as new figures reveal what's hot and what's not in the city.
The median sale price in the suburb, sitting between Mt Eden and the CBD, rose from $300,500 in November 2014 to $480,500 last month, according to data from the Real Estate Institute, obtained by NZME.
Across the city, there was a $95,000 rise to $765,000 in the same period.
Neighbour Grafton was one of the least buoyant, experiencing only 3 per cent growth to a median sale price of $305,250.
Apartment Specialists director Andrew Murray wasn't surprised. He said Grafton was a "studentville" dominated by budget accommodation and leaky apartment buildings, with no amenities or supermarkets.
Eden Terrace, in contrast, was an area with potential, especially since it was announced that the City Rail Loop would go through there.
Mr Murray said his firm had made a strategic decision to target the area, and it had paid off.
Apartments that last year were going for about $300,000 were now fetching about $500,000. "They were grossly undervalued," he said. "A lot of investors are seeing that as a huge area."
Perched at the top of Symonds St amid a sea of concrete, Eden Terrace had until recently been full of low-end commercial buildings and some apartments.
Now, Mr Murray said, it was an attractive option for buyers who couldn't or didn't want to shell out $1.5 million for a villa in Mt Eden that brought a huge mortgage and a long daily commute.
"That $500,000 apartment is probably quite attractive."
Some banks were also offering generous loan-to-value ratios.
Two-bedroom apartments were the most common in Eden Terrace, and Mr Murray said some could fetch as much as $630,000. One-bedroom apartments might hit $400,000, up from $250,000 a year ago in what he said was a "massive movement".
There was also a big movement to owner-occupiers in the area.
Real Estate Institute chief Colleen Milne said the Auckland market was strong this year, with large increases in median sale prices for many areas.
She said the institute was awaiting the full impact of measures such as changes to the loan-to-value ratio, which might stabilise prices in the Auckland region.
"The area of Grafton has experienced a small lift in the median sales price in comparison to its neighbour Eden Terrace.
"The difference between the two areas could be in relation to proposed changes to the Unitary Plan.
"There is also a Special Housing Area in the region, which residents have voiced concern over [because of] the impact of traffic congestion in the area."
Three of the top five hottest suburbs, experiencing the biggest rise in median sale prices, were on the North Shore.
As far as numbers of houses sold goes, the biggest increases were in Opaheke (near Papakura), Silverdale, Blockhouse Bay, Sunnyvale and Manukau. The biggest decreases were in Maraetai, Westmere, Grafton, Half Moon Bay and Ostend.