This region is poised as one of the country's property darlings.

Its incremental but consistent rises are met with high-fives from those of us climbing the ladder - and disparagement from locals hoping to get a foot on the first rung.

Ownership remains the Kiwi byword for personal prosperity, a key to happiness and national aspiration.

Read more: John Roil: Are we facing housing Armageddon?
Large increase in Hawke's Bay homes selling for over $1 million
QV House Price Index sees Hawke's Bay values increase


Intergenerational renting as a mode of living seems kosher in many places across Europe but it's in stark contrast to the entrenched fascination with mortgages in Gods Own.

Last week we ran a story that showed average house prices in Hawke's Bay are at an all-time high with prices up nearly $70,000 in the past 12 months.

We should acknowledge that the quarter-acre dream isn't anything new. But generations ago it was more a quest for a lifestyle. These days we're seeing the commodification of habitation, a quarter-acre punt.

Here in the provinces the ample green spaces render the idea of tenancy and apartment living a harder pill to swallow.

Young renters fully aware of the national rite of passage are consequently made to feel like second-class citizens.

Maybe it's time we start working on ending the stigma of renting as a long-term mode of living.

The truth is, us Kiwis are wildly enigmatic in our property tastes. In our weekly homes we're discerning consumers – whereas most of would admit our happiest memories come from the austerity of a bach.

Hence, maybe the solution to the housing riddle can be found in this ascetic, simple living.


Baches, after all, have always been a celebration of everything we can do without.