Canadian migrant Genevieve Westcott remembers the 20.5 per cent mortgage rates of the 1980s.
"When we first came to New Zealand in the mid-80s, we had planned to stay for just a year to sample the Antipodean delights. We had left behind a beautiful house in Vancouver. We were horrified at the mortgage rates in God's Own. In 1987, when I was headhunted back to Canada, the mortgage rate had peaked at 20.5 per cent compared to Canada where the rate was 9.75 per cent for a one-year fixed mortgage. We didn't waste any time buying a new home in Toronto," the broadcast journalist remembers.
But by 1991, she had returned here, buying a sprawling villa in Devonport's Summer St where she lived for 17 happy years.
"Our mortgage rate then, as I recall, was about 14.5 per cent. Luckily we brought Canadian funds with us from the sale of a Toronto home to bolster our purchase. But we still had to go to the bank and it took us a few years to pay off the mortgage. We had quite a party to celebrate when the momentous day arrived.
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"It was also time for a change so for the past few years, we've loved living almost beachside near the golden sands of Castor Bay in a very modern, urban solid-as-they-come concrete 'castle'," she said of 110 Castor Bay Rd, which is now for sale.
"It's a fantastic home built for sophisticated, relaxed living and entertaining."