Homes earning six times the typical Auckland household income

Author
Ben Leahy, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Sat, 4 Dec 2021, 3:40PM

Homes earning six times the typical Auckland household income

Author
Ben Leahy, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Sat, 4 Dec 2021, 3:40PM

Waiheke Island home owners are not only living in style, they are earning in style too. 

A typical Auckland household would need to toil for at least six years to earn as much money as homes in Waiheke Island and Herne Bay made in the past year. 

The average home value in exclusive Waiheke Island has now hit $3.5 million, jumping $854,000 in the 12 months to December 1, according to a Herald analysis of data by NZME's OneRoof analyst partner, Valocity. 

Prices in coastal Herne Bay, meanwhile, have hit $4.1m, rising $836,000 in the same period. 

Based on those figures, a Waiheke Island or Herne Bay home would take about 60 days to earn the mean Auckland household income of $140,723 as calculated by economists Infometrics. 

For many Aucklanders on salaries half that, it would take just 30 days for Waiheke and Herne Bay homes to earn more than them. 

New Zealand average prices are now also at $1.1m, a $226,000 rise in the past 12 months that equal twice the mean national income of $113,728 earned in the same period. 

Valocity head of customer experience James Wilson said it's been a good year to be a property owner. 

"All the economic policy settings responding to Covid-19 in New Zealand have been in favour of those owning housing assets," he said. 

The spectacular growth since the Covid-19 pandemic hit early last year has been described as the biggest boom since the 2000s. 

Indeed, house prices rose so much in the past 12 months that only 14 suburbs across the nation – or just 1 per cent – fell in value. 

All of those suburbs were small towns and most fell by less than $25,000. 

However, some property pundits are tipping house price growth to slow in coming months as interest rates rise and banks make it much harder to get a home loan. 

Wilson said that has led to fewer homes selling in recent weeks, but what has sold has tended to be higher-priced homes. 

That has meant overall prices in many exclusive suburbs continue to climb. 

"What is coming to market is higher quality and it's selling really well, so the overall values are also coming up as a result," he said. 

"In the lower price brackets, meanwhile, people are being a lot more cautious or they simply can't afford to sell and then buy on the next rung up the ladder." 

The Herald crunched the latest numbers by analysing Valocity's average house price data and the mean household income figures by Infometrics. 

The Infometrics data showed the Auckland region's mean income was $140,723, up three per cent from $138,737 in 2020. 

Auckland's average house value had risen $306,000 or 25 per cent over the same time to now be $1.5m. 

That meant the typical house earned twice as much in the past year as the typical household. 

Property owners in coastal Okura Bush, just south of popular retirement destination Orewa in Auckland's north, were actually New Zealand's biggest winners as their homes rose by more than even Waiheke Island. 

Home values hit in the suburb jumped $998,000 in the past 12 months to an average value of $3.2m. 

That was seven times more than the typical household income in the city. 

Inner-Auckland suburb St Marys Bay was also a big gainer with the average $3.2m value rising $720,000 or five times as much as the typical household income. 

Outside Auckland, Queenstown's Speargrass Flat with its spectacular mountain views hit a new average value of $4.2m as prices jumped $737,000. 

That is five times the mean household income in Queenstown of $135,441. 

Outside of Auckland, the Wellington region was the area with the next biggest price jump. 

The region's average value is now $1.1m, jumping 29 per cent or $249,000. 

That meant the typical home earned twice as much as the $128,768 household income in the area. 

Bay of Plenty homes are the next biggest earners. The average value is now $1m, rising $244,000 or 31 per cent in the past year. 

That is 2.4 times higher than the region's $100,264 typical household income.