Quake still affecting rental prices

CAROLINE KING
Last updated 12:16 14/01/2013

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Demand for rental properties in Christchurch continues to outweigh supply, pushing rents up 26 per cent.

The latest Trade Me figures found demand in the region was up 22 per cent in the final quarter of 2012, and supply down 18 per cent.

The only other region where demand had not fallen was Hamilton, with demand up 4 per cent and supply up 11 per cent.

In the rest of the country, supply was strong and demand weak.

Auckland had the largest drop in demand for rentals, down 18 per cent.

The biggest increase in supply was in Manukau, up 24 per cent, followed by  15 per cent growth in the North Shore.

Trade Me property head Brendon Skipper said Christchurch's rental market continued to ''do its own thing''.

''The long-term impact of the earthquakes on rental stock continues to bite, with listings down 18 per cent on a year ago,'' he said.

''Good properties remain in hot demand, with the average level of inquiry up 22 per cent compared to last year, and asking rents are up a massive 26 per cent.

''We're not expecting anything to change here in the foreseeable future,'' he said.

Skipper said market conditions elsewhere in the country would place downward pressure on weekly asking rents.

''A lot of landlords outside of Christchurch are wrestling over-supplied rental markets and may need to drop asking rents when they get back from the New Year break to lure tenants,'' he said.

''The exception here will be those with student-friendly properties in university towns like Dunedin and Palmerston North as the annual flat-hunting missions get under way.''

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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