Homes more affordable, except in Auckland

JASON KRUPP
Last updated 09:46 09/10/2012
house real estate sale
PROPERTY MARKET: House prices are expected to keep rising in Auckland.

Relevant offers

Money

Grey backlash to proposed Westpac closure in Waikanae where median age is 62 Buyers battle for new build in Nelson's Washington Valley | Close to Home House auctions on the rise in Nelson-Tasman | Close to Home Meridian Energy to pay special dividend to shareholders Households using less power a challenge for electricity industry: Vector Raglan residents to Westpac: Communities like ours matter Loathe your job in your 20s or 30s? That may hurt your health by your 40s Leaving Auckland for the regions a smart money move Wellington finance companies repay $1.5 million after watchdog investigation Businessman tied to ACC bribery runs into new cashflow issues

Owning your own home has become more affordable thanks to rising wages and lower borrowing rates offsetting higher home prices - except if you live in Auckland.

The latest Massey University Home Affordability Report shows the national affordability index improved by 2.8 per cent on the three months ending August to its lowest level in 10 years.

That was due to a $6.25 increase in the average wage and further declines in monthly mortgage costs outstripping a $1000 rise in median home prices over the period.

The Manawatu/Wanganui region had the biggest jump in quarterly affordability, with a 9.4 per cent improvement, followed by Hawkes Bay and Waikato at 8.4 per cent and 4.9 per cent respectively.

Wellington had a 1.4 per cent deterioration in affordability in the three months, and the Canterbury/Westland region chalked up a 0.3 per cent decline.

On an annual basis almost all regions saw affordability improve by 4.9 per cent versus 2.9 per cent 12-months ago.

Auckland was the single exception, with affordability decreasing 0.4 per cent compared to August last year.

"House prices in Auckland are increasing faster than other regions due to the imbalance of new supply to meet demand from the increasingly population," said Bob Hargreaves, director of Massey's Real Estate Analysis Unit.

"In the short run, while interest rates stay low and builders aren't building, house prices will continue to rise in Auckland."

Floating mortgage rates from most major banks are currently about 5.75 per cent and two-year fixed rates start at about 5.25 per cent.

Waikato, Bay of Plenty, and Otago had the biggest year-on-year improvements in affordability, both at 12.8 per cent, followed by Manawatu/Wanganui at 11.1 per cent.

Canterbury/Westland and Wellington had annual improvements of 2.3 per cent and 1.8 per cent respectively.

Only the Central Otago/Lakes district beat Auckland in the least affordable housing stakes, with an index ranking of 134.6 per cent versus the national average, although affordability had been improving of late. Auckland scored 129 per cent.

Ad Feedback

- BusinessDay.co.nz

Comments

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content