Auckland house prices almost triple those in Marlborough
Homebuyers can buy three houses in Marlborough for the price of one in Auckland, new figures show.
The latest figures from property valuation company QV shows the price of an average home in Marlborough has climbed to $374,454.
The average price of a house in Auckland is $1,088,811.
Mark Stevenson First National Real Estate director Mark Stevenson said there was strong demand for residential properties in Marlborough, pushing prices to levels he had never seen before.
But compared to Auckland prices, Marlborough was still considered cheap, he said.
"For $1m you can buy a fantastic home in Marlborough, over 300 square metres, quadruple garage, absolutely top of the line."
"Your $1m house in Auckland is probably going to be worth $300,000 in Blenheim."
Stonehaven Vineyard Homestay owner Paulette Hansen moved from Auckland 12 years ago with her husband, for the lifestyle and to escape the traffic.
After years of running a bed and breakfast, the couple decided to sell, listing the property with Bayleys Marlborough for around $1.2m.
"What we could buy for that in Auckland would probably just be a shed that needs demolishing," Hansen said.
Michelle and Marcus Williams moved down from Auckland nearly a year ago and bought St Leonards Vineyard Cottage, outside Blenheim.
Michelle Williams said many Aucklanders were able to cash out and buy better properties when they moved to the regions.
"Prices down here are fantastic, when Aucklanders move down they can get a bigger home and a nicer lifestyle," she said.
Williams said she was aware of other Aucklanders who had bought properties in the region, but said they were mostly older, as people needed to have job security to justify the move.
"If we didn't have the business, we wouldn't have shifted," she said.
Bayleys Marlborough general manager David Lee said there was an increase in the number of people from Auckland buying homes in the region, for themselves or as investment properties.
People were using their investment properties in Marlborough to earn enough money to get on the Auckland property ladder, Lee said.
He was also aware of Aucklanders buying multiple properties in Marlborough to establish a sustainable lifestyle for themselves.
"People are cashing up and buying nice, comfortable family homes and then using that extra cash to put into one or two rental properties, which secures a lifestyle for them."
There were not as many job opportunities in Marlborough compared to Auckland, but the internet and the ability to work remotely meant people were still buying properties in the region, he said.
"I think there's a new community of people in Blenheim working remotely," he said.
"I'm aware of people who choose to live here and commute to Auckland once a week."
However, the extra demand from outside Marlborough had yet to make a significant difference to house prices, although Lee said he expected this to change if the situation continued.
The QV figures showed Marlborough house prices had increased by 7.4 per cent in the year to February, compared to Auckland's 16 per cent rise.
Since last October, Stevenson said he thought average house prices in Marlborough had increased by about $20,000.
He expected this to increase further because of declining interest rates and continued strong demand, which was pitting first-home buyers against property investors in the $250,000 to $350,000 price bracket, he said.
Because of the supply and demand imbalance for rental properties in Marlborough, there were more investors looking to get into the market, which resulted in increased competition for first-home buyers.
The company managed a portfolio of 500 rental properties around the region and only two were vacant, he said.
- The Marlborough Express