Howick and Pakuranga Times
Botany and Ormiston Times : Botany and Ormiston Times Thursday September 3 2015
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CP0435 Appliance Repairs. Builders. Carpenters. Chimney Sweep. Cleaning. Concreting. Decorators. Drainlaying. Electrical. Fencing. Flooring. Garden Care. Glass & Glazing. Handymen. Kitchens. Landscaping. Lawncare. Painters. Plumbers. Roofing. Spouting. Tiling. Tree Services. Upholsterers. Waterblasting. Window Cleaning. ...and lots more, all in Times Classifieds. Check out the Times Classifieds Trades & Services listings... Ph 271 8055 www.times.co.nz Need a hand? MOVING OR HAVING A CLEAN-OUT? JOHN 534 6566 | COLIN 535 6443 | BILL 535 4137 GIVE US YOUR CDs / DVDs BOOKS & PUZZLES. CALL US! IS COMING IN OCTOBER! BOOKARAMA ■■ By Amy HAmilton CHAdwiCk, Courtesy rednews The unaffordability of Auckland houses is a hot topic. But are there other cities in the world that have it worse? The best data we have comes from Demographia and it’s often used to demonstrate that Auckland has one of ‘the world’s least affordable’ property markets. But it only ranks cities from nine countries. On a global scale, Auckland’s unaffordability is far less severe than places with: ■➤ Extremely low incomes, like the Democratic Republic of Congo, where the average income is in the hundreds of dollars annually. ■➤ Extremely wealthy inhabitants, like Monaco, where US$1 million buys only 17 square metres of luxury property, described by media company Forbes as “the world’s most overpriced real estate market”. ■➤ Extreme inequality, like Namibia, where it is estimated that fewer than 10 per cent of households can afford even the lowest priced properties. However, when we think about Auckland’s house prices, we don’t usually want to compare them to Namibia or Monaco. We’re more interested in countries similar to our own, like Britain and Australia. This is where Demographia is useful and the 2015 rankings are: Hong Kong, China 1; Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada 2; Sydney, New South Wales, Australia 3; San Francisco, California, USA 4; San Jose, California, USA 5; Melbourne, Victoria, Australia 6; London, UK 7; San Diego, California, USA 8; Auckland, New Zealand 9; Los Angeles, California, USA 10. The survey recorded a median Auckland house price of $613,000, with a median income of $75,100. Since that data was collected, the median house price in Auckland has risen to $755,000 and our median household income to $85, 212. For Auckland to reach a median equal to Hong Kong’s, our median house price would need to increase to about $1.45 million. That’s a fairly staggering number. All the cities at the top of the list and others are grappling with affordability issues similar to Auckland’s. There’s a housing affordability crisis in Sydney and Melbourne, in New York and San Francisco, and in London, a city of 8.6 million where only 43 houses were affordable for first-time buyers earlier this year. Of course, the fact that some other cities are much less affordable than Auckland doesn’t make property in Auckland any cheaper. But it does point to some of the reasons why the city is expensive and to some trends in the global housing marketplace. In 2008 as the global financial crisis hit hard, prices dropped almost everywhere. But they quickly surged back, according to Kate Everett- Allen, a partner in residential research for Knight Frank, based in London. “Nervous investors were trying to find a safety asset – a safe haven for their money,” she says. These buyers want certain criteria when they buy, and Auckland fits many of these criteria. International buyers want to put their money into cities where prices will keep increasing, says Everett-Smith. They look for: ■➤ A firm and stable political situation. ■➤ A transparent property market where they can easily track sales and prices. ■➤ A good legal system. ■➤ Good universities and schools. ■➤ Accessibility, ideally no more than an hour to reach the airport, the beach and/or the ski field. Cities with these assets are also appealing to locals and new immigrants and almost all the cities at the top of the Demographia table are ranked highly by quality of living surveys, especially Vancouver, Sydney and also Melbourne. Again, Auckland follows this trend, ranked strongly as one of the world’s most liveable cities. “Particularly in the last few years, we’ve seen the phenomenon of key cities becoming detached from their wider housing market and operating by different rules,” Everett-Allen says. She cites London, Sydney, Melbourne and Manhattan Island in New York as prime examples. Again, Auckland fits the bill. If these other international cities are any indicator, there’s no pressing reason why Auckland prices will come into line with the rest of New Zealand. It’s no coincidence that many of the world’s most desirable, least affordable housing markets are located near the sea. These port cities, like Hong Kong, San Francisco and Sydney, are usually attractive to live in and well-connected by sea, rail and air. The downside of those beautiful waterfronts? They restrict a city’s physical growth – in Auckland’s case in two directions. Chris Parker, chief economist policy and planning division at Auckland Council says the our Homes todAy Auckland on an international scale?
Botany and Ormiston Times Thursday August 27 2015
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