The average household rates rise is 9.9 per cent, or $214 for each household.

Some of the poorest people in Auckland are being hit the hardest with big rates rises this year.

Households in the suburbs of Mangere and Otahuhu face an average rates rise of 16.9 per cent this year, or more than $300.

The average household rates rise is 9.9 per cent, or $214 for each household.

Other suburbs copping big household increases are Avondale and New Lynn (15.7 per cent) and Beach Haven and Glenfield (16.1 per cent).

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The well-to-do inner city suburbs of Mt Eden and Albert are facing an average household increase of 14.9 per cent.

"The whole thing seems dishonest"

David Kirk retired two weeks ago after 50 years as a sales consultant. Yesterday he went on the Auckland Council website to discover the rates on his Mairangi Bay home are going up by $1390, or $26 a week.

"The whole thing seems dishonest," said Mr Kirk, whose new rates of $4535 are 44.2 per cent up on last year's, and 59 per cent more than he was paying just three years ago.

"Originally we were promised a 2.5 per cent rates increase. Then a 3.5 per cent increase, then up to 9.9 per cent and now I've got the bill and it's 44.4 per cent.

"Can we have our old North Shore City Council back please as I haven't seen one iota of evidence that the Super City is more efficient and cost effective.

"The opposite is the case."

Mr Kirk said he could afford the extra rates on his home, valued at $1.6 million, but wondered how the elderly who relied on national super and young families who had bought into an inflated housing market with huge mortgages would cope.

The council reported more than 1000 people an hour visiting the website early in the day to get an exact figure for their rates this year.

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It said the website is performing very well considering the high level of interest ratepayers have shown.

Aucklanders can enter their property details at aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/rates to find out their rates.

The final figures showed the number of households getting a rates cut is down from 118,000 to 51,000 - many in West Auckland, Rodney and the Gulf Islands.

This came about after the council voted in May for a targeted rate for transport, which increased average household rates to 9.9 per cent, or $214 a household.

The council said about 9000 households were due for a rates rise of more than $1000 and 976 homes will pay more than $2000.

Herald reader Kirsty Wintle said she must have been one of the lucky ones - with a small rates increase.

"I live in Manly, Whangaparaoa. The capital value on my property went up $100,000.

"My rates increase for the 2015/16 year is $50," she said.

The first rates instalments will be sent out in early August.

Auckland Chamber of Commerce chief executive Michael Barnett said in the absence of a review of Auckland Council's costs, the rates bills going online beg the question: "Are the levels of increase necessary?"

"Ratepayers deserve to know how well the council is performing and whether they are getting good value from the average 9.9 per cent increase in their rates.

"The only way to determine this is to carry out a transparent line-by-line review of council costs and plans for capital expenditure."

"Without such a review Auckland ratepayers will struggle to accept the need for the increases," Mr Barnett said. Family First national director Bob McCoskrie said an increase in rates will put many families under huge pressure.

"Families throughout New Zealand have, over the past years, had to make sacrifices and look for specials and discounts as they cope with increasing prices.

"They have not had the luxury of raising their income by 10 per cent with a simple vote.

"It's time that local councils including the Auckland Council took the same approach.

They should not pass on out-of-control spending to families. It's time that they too tightened their belt," he said.

Couple's bill rockets from $1900 to $4136


While some Aucklanders were hit hard with rates increases of close to 40 per cent, Moe Lewin reckons her nightmare 118 per cent increase might take the cake.

When the product manager, who lives with her husband and his parents in Te Atatu Peninsula, checked her rates this morning they'd gone from about $1900 to $4136.

To help out the in-laws, who were having trouble looking after their Massey home, Mrs Lewin and her husband built a house for them out the back of their property.

"They were getting old, it was too hard and costly to maintain the house, and we have a big 1200sq m section ... So we were like 'sell your house, free up your assets, someone else can have it'."

She said the move also meant they were able to keep an eye on them.

Moe Lewin's rates have increased by 118 per cent. Photo / Chris Loufte
Moe Lewin's rates have increased by 118 per cent. Photo / Chris Loufte

Organising building the second house - including consents, surveyors and inspections - cost more than $50,000, Mrs Lewin said.

"Then two months ago we paid a $25,000 contribution fee, even though it's not subdivided and it's not a cross lease ... We had to upgrade the stormwater connection, which cost about $40,000. It's insane."

The changes bumped up the property's CV from about $860,000 to $1.2 million - an increase of 39 per cent - Mrs Lewin said.

After the initial shock of discovering the 118 per cent hike, she has formally complained to Auckland Council.

She said she didn't get a letter or a phone call warning of the increase like some did.

"I said to them: 'I haven't heard of anyone else that's had a 100 per cent increase, shouldn't I have been at the front of the queue?'"

But an Auckland council spokeswoman said the increase was due to the revaluation of the house from $425,000 to $810,000.

"A second dwelling was then built on the property which saw its value increase from $810,000 to $1.2 million.

"Because it has a second dwelling, it then also becomes liable for additional uniform annual general charge (UAGC), waste management and interim transport levy charges.

"As a result of the revaluation, plus additional dwelling built, the values increased $775,000 or 182 per cent, and rates increased from $1903.71 to $4136.38.

"This is an increase of $2232.67 or 117 per cent .

"If the second dwelling had not been built, then the rates would have been $2586.42, an increase of $682.71 or 35.9 per cent.

"This would have been in comparison to an increase in value of 91 per cent."

Winners & losers

Mary Hurley, CBD: +40%

"My two-bedroom, CBD apartment's rates have gone up 40 per cent, from $1362.84 to $1903.21 - $404 more than I had budgeted for. The rates for the apartment with the same floor plan one floor above me are $1767.48. I'm the only occupant of my apartment and am a full-time student getting a student allowance and working one day a week."

Bruce Maxwell, Great Barrier Island: -0.005%
"After being promised a rate decrease of up to 25 per cent, we have actually received a 0.005 per cent decrease, or $7. Brilliant. Don't know whether to have a cream bun or a coffee - cannot afford both."

Heather and Patrick Deehan, Glendowie: +15%
"Our rates have gone up 10 per cent each year for the last three years, this year they have gone up 15 per cent. So much for a capped 2.5 per cent rise."

Bevan Jenkins, Kingsland: +2%
"I must be one of the majority of Aucklanders whose rates haven't changed by much. My CV went up by $90,000 in the latest council recalculations on my Kingsland apartment, but my rates have gone up only $30 a year from $1556 to $1586.60. Sounds like only a small minority who have had massive capital gains are having larger increases."

Franca Giovanni, CBD: +24%
"For a 29sq m CBD unit with a CV of $180,000, the 2015-16 rates are $1027, while the 2014-15 rates were $830. The rates rise is 24 per cent."

Gareth, Glenfield: +7%
"My rates increased $147, or 7 per cent. I am in a block of six units and share a drive with just one other house which sold in June 2014 for $581K. The council then valued my identical house at $650,000 in July 2014 based on recent sales. I objected and had my value dropped to $600,000. Another unit in my block identical to mine was valued at $730,000 but the owner didn't object. [Its owner is] paying an extra $500 per year (a 26 per cent increase)."