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Auckland holds on to rent and price premium: MoBIE

Auckland’s house prices are increasing at a faster rate than the national average, according to the latest data from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

Its key indicators for August said the average house sale price in the country’s biggest city had reached $566,329.

A lack of listings and new housing is believed to be driving up prices but the number of building consents in June 2012 was done from a year ago and down from the previous month.

While rents in areas outside Auckland increased at a higher rate in the year to July 2012, rental properties in Auckland still attract a weekly premium of 43 per cent over the rest of the country.

“Continuing low consent numbers for the Auckland region, coupled with continued population growth, suggest this region will continue to experience pressure on rents,” the Ministry said.

By contrast, house prices in Wellington were flat, according to the Ministry’s data, although average rents increased slightly.

In June 2012, 98 new buildings were consented in Wellington City, compared with 20 in June 2011. Most were apartments.

“With Wellington rents still relatively flat and little growth in house prices, it is not clear whether the region can absorb further increase in apartment numbers.”

The largest rent rise reported anywhere in the country was in Christchurch, where the average weekly rent increased by 11.5 per cent over the past year.

Rents were rising particularly fast in the west and southwest of the city. But the number of new dwelling consents has more than doubled over the past year.

The Ministry said overall, the New Zealand housing market was stable.


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