In some parts of Hawke's Bay, paying a mortgage is cheaper than paying for rent, new statistics show.
There are seven suburbs in Hastings that average a monthly profitable return on paying a mortgage compared with paying for rent, the stats, produced by Velocity for OneRoof, show.
According to the stats Longlands comes in as the most profitable at $355 cheaper than renting and Flaxmere a near second at $312 cheaper.
And areas such as Bridge Pa, Camberley and Pakipaki are more than $230 cheaper to live in, on average, if you're paying a mortgage over paying rent.
OneRoof editor Owen Vaughan said there were also other suburbs in Hawke's Bay within reach by budgeting a little.
"There are another nine suburbs in Napier and Hastings that average around $100 or less cheaper for rentals but they fit in the category that is a reachable goal for people to still pay for a mortgage by working to a budget," he said.
"The suburbs where the average house prices are sub-$400,000 are the ones where the affordability to pay a mortgage over rent compared to the more premium areas."
Those suburbs consist of Onekawa, Tamatea, Marewa and Saint Leonards which have average rentals that are around $40 to $80 cheaper than mortgages.
Tremains Hawke's Bay sales manager Stuart Christensen said in recent years they had seen some of the cheaper and more affordable regions become hubs for investment of rental properties.
"We've had a lot of investors take advantage of the early market and some are now looking to cash in, which is leaving many renters looking for places to live, making the rental market one of supply and demand and landlords able to raise prices accordingly."
He also said that another big factor in increasing rental prices is due to the recent changes to rental property standards.
"Part of the reason for that have been the regulations put on to landlords in terms of insulation and so forth and it looks as if they have passed that on to their tenants which is causing the extra price increases for rentals," Christensen said.
"We're seeing that all over the place not only in Flaxmere and Camberley but also in Maraenui with rental prices going up."
Christensen said rental increases and prices are crazy compared with prices people would have paid a few years ago.
"What people pay now for rent, if they paid the same amount 16 to 18 months ago they would have been able to get a hell of a lot more for their money."
One thing that does hold people back is the cash to get into the housing market and be able to afford a deposit on a house. Christensen said that was starting to get easier.
"Banks are starting to become more flexible compared to a few years ago because they see the growth in the regions and the potential benefits in them."