Auckland effect ‘massive’

According to the saying the grass is always greener on the other side and that certainly seems to be the case for plenty of Auckland property hunters as they cast their eye around the country for a new home or investment property.

Trade Me Property data shows that every region around the country has seen an increase in Aucklanders viewing their listings in the last year. Eight regions saw the number of views from Aucklanders increase by 5 per cent or more.

Head of Trade Me Property Nigel Jeffries said the ‘Auckland effect’ wasn’t an entirely new phenomenon but had “rapidly accelerated” in the last year.

“Aucklanders have looked further afield for years, whether they’re looking for an investment, a holiday house or for a change of lifestyle. However we’ve seen a real ramp-up in that interest this year. The Auckland property market has become so crazy that for some buyers, the option that makes the most sense is to buy outside their region.

“What surprised me was just how far away Aucklanders have been property hunting. This year Aucklanders made up 13 per cent of searches for Marlborough properties, 16 per cent in Otago, 12 per cent in Wairarapa and 10 per cent for the West Coast. It shows property buyers in the City of Sails are considering all their options.”

The growth has been even stronger in the regions surrounding Auckland with Aucklanders making 29 per cent of all searches for Bay of Plenty property, 44 per cent of Northland searches, and 32 per cent of Waikato searches.

Mr Jeffries said the increased interest in nearby regions is affecting asking prices. “In the last year we’ve seen average asking prices in the Bay of Plenty climb by $4000 per month and a jump of 28 per cent over the last five years. It’s the same scenario in the rental market where the median rents have climbed $50 a week. The region is going gangbusters.”

Outside Auckland, the desire to look over the fence into other regions appears a lot lower, with only Canterbury and Wellington producing significant numbers of house-hunters.

In Canterbury, the main interest was in regions around the South Island including Marlborough (25 per cent of views are from Cantabrians), Nelson/Tasman (14 per cent) and Otago (16 per cent). While in Wellington the proximity to the Wairarapa saw 41 per cent of property views from the capital.

More information

This release measures the location of Trade Me members vs the location of the property that they’ve viewed. For instance we know that in 2014, 18 percent of all views of Gisborne property were from Aucklanders, compared to 21 per cent in 2015.

The below table outlines the percentage of views from Aucklanders for each region for Jan-Nov 2014 v Jan-Nov 2015:

Property Locations Jan-Nov 2014 Jan-Nov 2015 Change
Bay of Plenty 18% 29% +11%
Gisborne 18% 21% +3%
Hawke's Bay 12% 19% +7%
Northland 37% 44% +7%
Otago 12% 16% +4%
Waikato 22% 32% +10%
Wairarapa 7% 12% +5%