Dunedin is the best NZ city to live in - just

Affordable housing, civic pride, and a strong sense of safety seem to be behind the good results for Dunedin.
PETER MEECHAM/FAIRFAX NZ

Affordable housing, civic pride, and a strong sense of safety seem to be behind the good results for Dunedin.

 Dunedin has pipped Wellington to become the best city in New Zealand to live in, according to a new survey.

Affordable housing, civic pride, and a strong sense of safety seem to be behind the good results for Dunedin in the biennial Quality of Life Survey.

Those in Dunedin were also more likely to be physically active and less likely to be stressed than their urban counterparts.

Fully 88 per cent of Dunedinites said they had a good or excellent quality of life, compared to 81 per cent of the total.

READ MORE:
Huffington Post lauds Wellington's 'remarkable' creative resurgence
* 15 things no one told me about living in Auckland
NZ is no paradise, it is brutal 

The study questioned 7155 Kiwis across seven urban areas and two wider regions. Quality of life in general was relatively steady across the two previous surveys in 2014 and 2012.

Wellington came out in top in 2014, but were beaten by Dunedin in 2016's results, coming in second with 87 per cent of residents happy with their lives.

But while capital-dwellers found their housing to be less affordable, they led the pack in city safety and were close to the front in civic pride.

Auckland and Christchurch lagged the pack, with 79 and 78 per cent of residents saying they were happy with their lives.

Ad Feedback

HOUSING WOES

While four in five urban Kiwis say they have a good quality of life, less than half consider their housing situation to be affordable.

Housing was one of the main reasons cited by people who said they had a poor quality of life, along with financial anxiety, poor health, and bad job prospects.

Unsurprisingly, Aucklanders were the worst hit, with just 41 per cent considering their housing situation affordable, less than the 42 per cent who said it was unaffordable. Those in Dunedin were the most likely to find their housing situation affordable, at 69 per cent.

Despite these housing issues life satisfaction remained quite high. Research leader David Stuart of the Wellington City Council was somewhat surprised by this.

"It's a bit of a surprise that you can be facing pressure in one area in your life but still have other things that are working really well for you," Stuart said.

"Housing is a driver of quality of life, but the strongest driver was a category of responses that would fit more into emotional and physical health."

The survey used a random sample of those enrolled to vote, so could miss out those in severe housing duress. It was post-weighted to be representative of New Zealand's demographics.

STRESS AND SAFETY

About one in five Christchurch residents said they were stressed "always" or "most of the time". The least stressed city was the Hutt or Dunedin, where 35 per cent of respondents said they were "rarely" or "never" stressed.

More than two thirds (67 per cent) said dangerous driving was a problem in their area. This was the biggest safety issue identified, particularly for respondents in Christchurch and Hamilton. The least cited issue was "people begging in the street," which just 45 per cent of perceived of as a problem in their area.

Just four in 10 respondents felt safe in their city centre after dark. In Christchurch and Hamilton more than 60 per cent of respondents felt unsafe there after dark, with 23 per cent of Hamilton respondents saying they felt "very unsafe". Residents of Wellington were the most likely to feel safe in the CBD after dark, with 65 per cent feeling "fairly safe" or "very safe".

"It's interesting that Wellington is perceived as the most safe, because intuitively you assume the bigger the city is the less safe it is," Stuart said.

Wellingtonians were also the most welcoming to outsiders. About three quarters of the capital's respondents said that New Zealand becoming home for people with different lifestyles and cultures made their city a better place to live in. Aucklanders were the least welcoming, with just over half (52 per cent) saying diversity was a net positive and one in five saying it was a net negative.

 - Stuff

Comments

Ad Feedback
special offers
Auckland

Trapped and injured after crash

The fire service are working to extricate a person trapped in their car after a crash in west Auckland.

A person is trapped with serious injuries after an Auckland car crash.

Auckland's combustible buildings video

Auckland Council's general manager of building control, Ian McCormick, said staff have manually checked for buildings ...

Anger among residents of Auckland apartment high-rise identified as having Grenfell Tower combustible cladding.

ABs or Lions? Penguins predict video

A team of Gentoo penguins (or rugbius predictus in Latin) have picked the All Blacks as Saturday night's test winners. ...

Spoiler alert: These penguins, proud in their AB colours, may have been biased ahead of the Lions game.

Schools go 'water-only'

Charlie, 5, and Jack, 8, make sure they take a full water bottle to school every day.

Two Auckland schools ban sugary drinks and adopt 'water-only' policy.

Wellington

Bars to share info on patrons

0307 2005 NEWS.
Party goers queue to get into the nightspots in Courtenay Place after the All Blacks vs Irish and ...

Go Pro footage and bouncer intel will be used to get Wellington's bar-goers to behave.

Barred from rest home

A Hastings woman has been trespassed from her mother's rest home. (file photo)

Woman says she's been deprived of time with her mum, which she can never get back.

Hammer attack in Hawke's Bay

Despite taking hit after hit from a robber's hammer, a scrap metal yard employee prevented the offender from getting a cent.

Scrap yard employee left bloody and bruised but sent thief packing, empty-handed.

Jetstar says sorry to female doctor

Jetstar says a system error meant a doctor's gender was automatically selected as male.

Doctor furious after Jetstar flight booking system assumes she was a man.

Canterbury

Movie creates Pecking Order video

Brian Glassey, Pecking Order star and national show competitor, with one of the roosters he's entering in the National ...

Visitors to premiere poultry show in Chch more interested in film stars than feathered entrants.

School shorts 'too cold'

School, generic, uniform, schoolbag, bag, books,

Mum pulls sons from school after it refused to provide warmer clothing options as part of its winter uniform.

Steve Gurney in cycle crash

Steve Gurney posted on social media from his hospital bed after the crash in Queenstown.

Kiwi multisport great Steve Gurney breaks five ribs crashing into a post on a cycle trail.

Accused of Ponzi fraud

Christchurch manager of WorldClaim NZ Guy Sayers has been ordered to surrender his passport.

Quake advocate Guy Sayers allegedly pushed WorldClaim clients to invest in a Ponzi scheme.

Waikato

Razor-laced balls at dog park

Heather Gowans often throws a tennis ball for her dog at Day's Park and is horrified Peppa could have bitten into one of ...

Tennis balls containing razor blades have been found in popular Hamilton dog park.

Fraudster stole $1.9m

Tessa Grant at a court appearance in 2016.

Tessa Grant lived it up on stolen funds, but that luxury lifestyle has come to a crashing halt.

What a winning streak

The $27.3 million winning Lotto and Powerball ticket was bought at the Four Square in Thames owned by Sukhpal Singh.

Six $1m-winning Lotto tickets have been sold in the Waikato in as many weeks.

Teen dies at work

A man who died after a work place accident at Torpedo7 on Wednesday has been named (file).

Teenager Jacob Woods was killed while working at a Hamilton distribution centre.

Taranaki

Word to your mother

21062017 News Photo ANDY JACKSON/Fairfax NZ.   Brittany Bourgoise runs her own nail technician business from home.  Kids ...

Brittany Bourgoise is a mumpreneur and reckons other mothers can become one too.

Activist joins council

Environmental activist Emily Bailey has been appointed as an iwi representative to the regional council policy and ...

Former Urewera raids activist looking forward to being part of making decisions on regional council

Marae dream over

The initial design of the Ngamotu Marae, which was to be located on Ocean View Pde site, was to cost $4.5 million and ...

Theft linked to scrapping of $4.5 million New Plymouth marae proposal.

A man and his kereru

Kereru like to flock but are usually only seen in ones and twos.

OPINION: Sometimes you get what you want and it just isn't enough.

Manawatu

No more limits

Cameron Holland, 20, had a brain injury after a car crash when he was 11.

A double blow robbed him of his father and gave him a serious brain injury.

Twisted web of lies

Nakita Sue will serve six months' home detention.

Woman stole man's life savings with sob stories and threats to post nude pics.

House fire shocks resident

Fire risk management officer Andrew Cotter examines a kitchen after a house fire.

Seeing flames tear through his home was the last thing a man from Bulls expected.

Kiwi seriously injured in London

Manawatu man Joel Perry is recovering in hospital after an assault and mugging while on his way home in London.

A vicious attack on a New Zealand tourist has left him in hospital and struggling to get home.

Nelson

Doughnuts selling like hot cakes

Josiah Smits of the Smoking Barrel Cafe and Restaurant with some of his famous donuts at his High St, Motueka business.

A Motueka cafe is struggling to meet demand for its syringe-injected gourmet doughnuts.

Greens target Nelson

Nick Smith has held the Nelson seat for 21 years.

The Green Party is campaigning to break Nick Smith's 21-year grip on Nelson.

Meet the Kiwi helping Oracle

Boat Build Manager Tim Smyth with the saw blade used by the giant CNC Milling machine  used on America's Cup yacht Oracle.

If Oracle turn it round to beat Team NZ, it will be thanks in part to a boat builder from Nelson.

Acting chief's pay confirmed

David Hammond has been appointed acting chief executive for the Nelson City Council.

Interim NCC chief executive David Hammond will take on the role from June 26.

Marlborough

Diarrhoea outbreak closes pool

Marlborough Lines Stadium 2000 will be closed for several days while it is tested for the parasite.

Seven swimmers have fallen ill after using a public pool in Blenheim.

Beached on an atoll

Havana Coffee's Geoff Marsland, right, was on the yacht.

The crew aboard a badly damaged yacht in the Pacific Ocean have been found alive and well.

Hunting the 'Kiwi way'

The Gunshack Blenheim owner Peter Watson says hunters are being left with fewer places to shoot because of poachers.

Poachers, and even some young hunters, have "no respect for anyone or anything, not even the animals they're hunting".

Once bitten, not shy

The Employment Relations Authority has penalised KRSVP Limited $25,000 for failing to keep proper employment records.

Marlborough vineyard contractor stung for the same employment breach twice in two years.

South Canterbury

Marking Matariki in Waimate video

Waimate Main School kapa haka group members are, from left, Summer Pay, 8, Maddison Longman, 8, and Ashley Guy, 7.

Attendee numbers have grown, and performances have improved, since Matariki celebrations began in Waimate six years ago.

RSA restructure looms

South Canterbury Returned and Services' Association president Greg O'Brien.

Restructure looms as South Canterbury RSA tries to improve its financial situation.

Clone sought for vet practice video

Stepping back after 40 years at the Veterinary Centre Waimate is vet Dougall McLachlan.

Dougall McLachlan's colleagues want his last pair of work gumboots to last a very long time.

$1.1m for new lights

Netcon chief executive Steve McCoy with an LED light of the type his company has already installed in Temuka. The Timaru ...

Work to replace Timaru's street lights can start next month thanks to boost.

Southland

Young performers face the music

Monique Clementson (Deloris), Annie Sherborne, and Rachael Scott (Sister Mary Patrick) at rehearsals for the ...

Young performers are gaining exposure and touring the country for Sister Act the musical.

Arrested after threats

08072016 Newsphoto. SIMON MAUDE / FAIRFAX NZ. Generic, stock, NZ Police, police car, The po po, police. 08-N-policeC

A 54-year-old man was arrested after threatening Work and Income staff.

Father 'evil', grief-stricken mum says

Police staff at the Riverton home where three-month-old Honour Ashworth was injured.

Grieving Southland mother says her soul was "ripped to pieces" when she found out her partner caused her infant son's death.

Green Party takes off

Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand Invercargill candidate Rochelle Surendran speaks at a Green Party Launch in Invercargill.

Green Party co-leader comments on Clutha-Southland MP resignation during Invercargill visit.

Ad Feedback