Napier home owners have been overwhelmed with the amount of interest in their rental properties as desperate families seek a place to live.

Radio NZ reported that one property owner received 900 inquiries within 24 hours.

A spokesperson from Hawke's Bay Properties told Radio NZ there was desperation when it came to rental properties and said the decision was difficult when it came to selecting applicants.

Hawke's Bay rental prices have had the fastest rise in the country, jumping 14 per cent in the last year to a record high of $480 in August, according to Trade Me figures.