PHOTO: Trade Me Property
Auckland tenants are looking further afield to traditionally quieter suburbs as the median weekly rent in the region remains at an all-time high of $550 and up 3.8 per cent on June last year, according to the latest Trade Me Property Rental Price Index.
Head of Trade Me Property Nigel Jeffries said there was a growing demand for rentals outside Auckland City with the number of enquiries in the first two days onsite climbing in Manukau City (up 39 per cent), Papakura (up 16 per cent) and Waitakere City (up 12 per cent). Enquiries fell 19 per cent in Auckland City compared to June last year.
“It’s a well-established trend for buyers to look further out to get onto the property ladder and now it seems tenants are doing the same. It’s not unexpected, as tenants must now weigh up the convenience of living in the city with the record-breaking rents we’ve been seeing. At some point convenience loses out to cost savings.
“Just like when buying a property, you get more bang for your rental buck when you move to quieter places, out from the center of the city. Often rental properties are bigger and you get more for what you’d pay in the city.”
Mr Jeffries said the most popular rental property on Trade Me Property in June was a three-bedroom house in Te Atatu South which received a “staggering” 39 enquiries in the first four hours of being listed and 142 enquiries in the first two days onsite.
Table 1: Auckland’s most popular rental listings in June 2018
Enquiries in first 2 days
Te Atatu Road
Wellington rents freeze
Mr Jeffries said while rent in the Wellington region was up 6.7 per cent on last year, it remained at a record $480 per week for a third consecutive month.
“Rents in Wellington remain stubbornly high – demand is still outstripping supply so we’ve not seen any movement in price yet.
“Like their Auckland counterparts, Wellington tenants seem to be opting for a longer commute too. The Hutt Valley has seen a big surge in interest and rental prices: the median rent in Upper Hutt was up 18.4 per cent on last year to $450 per week, while Lower Hutt was up 8.8 per cent to $462.50 and Porirua climbed 11.2 per cent to $522.50. Wellington City, on the other hand, had a much smaller increase of 3.1 per cent to $500 per week.
“Tenants were more interested in rentals in Lower Hutt than any other area in June, with the number of enquiries in the first two days onsite climbing a significant 60 per cent in Lower Hutt. In Upper Hutt, the number of enquiries was also up a solid 16 per cent while Wellington City fell 10 per cent on a year ago.”
Mr Jeffries said Wellington’s most popular property in June was a three-bedroom house in Naenae which had 69 enquiries in the first two days onsite.
Table 2: Wellington’s most popular rental listings in June 2018
Enquiries in first 2 days
Eastern Hutt Road
Dunedin student flat scramble begins
Mr Jeffries said the 2019 student flat scramble had begun in Dunedin and the median weekly rent was up 6.3 per cent on last year to $361.50.
“Dunedin is a unique market, it’s the only place in the country where a huge number of rental properties are snapped up months before anyone moves in. Typically landlords will advertise their properties for students in June, but students won’t move in until the following January when the University year begins.
“This year a massive 58 per cent of Dunedin rental listings onsite in June weren’t available until January 2019. Otago students have to be well planned, well presented and often have to come up with the bond in advance to secure a good property.”
Mr Jeffries said the number of listings in Dunedin was down 14 per cent on June 2017, pushing prices up and making it much harder for tenants.
National weekly rent hits new record
Mr Jeffries said strong growth in the regions saw the national median weekly rent climb 6.7 per cent on last year to a new record of $480 in June.
“The median weekly rent in the Bay of Plenty and Manawatu/Whanganui reached a record high in June, up 10.5 per cent to $475 and up 10 per cent to $330 respectively. Across the board, most regions saw solid double-digit growth in June with Nelson/Tasman the only area where rents dipped.
“It’s rare to see such significant increases in the winter months when typically the rental market slows down. It could point to a record summer of growth as supply battles to keep up with demand,” he added.
Townhouses in the capital on the rise
Mr Jeffries said the median weekly rent for townhouses in the capital continued to grow in June, jumping up 19.7 per cent to $533.
Apartments for rent in Auckland dropped $10 a week from a record high in May to $490 per week in June.
Small houses hit new high
“The median weekly rent for a small house (1-2 bedrooms) in Auckland reached a new high of $460 in June, up 4.5 per cent on the year prior.”
Mr Jeffries said across New Zealand, small houses were also proving popular and climbed 4.1 per cent on 2017 to $385 per week. “Small houses suit professionals who lead busy lifestyles and as a more affordable option they’re popular particularly in our main centres.”
SOURCE: Trade Me Media Release