Thursday, May 23rd, 2013 - Roy Morgan Research
For many Aucklanders, the prospect of owning their own home is looking less likely by the week. Rapid population growth, soaring property prices and inadequate supply have left New Zealand’s largest city with a serious housing shortfall.

For many Aucklanders, the prospect of owning their own home is looking less likely by the week. Rapid population growth, soaring property prices and inadequate supply have left New Zealand’s largest city with a serious housing shortfall. The latest Roy Morgan State of the Nation report reveals the figures behind this situation.

Increased demand for housing close to the city centre has been a key factor driving up Auckland’s property prices and making it harder for prospective buyers to enter the market. Currently, the city has the country’s lowest home ownership rate (32.3% of residents, compared to 35.2% in Wellington and 37.7% in the rest of New Zealand).

The percentage of Aucklanders paying off mortgages (35.4%) is also under the national average (36.6%).

Crowded houses

Little wonder, then, that Auckland is now home to the country’s highest percentage of renters – 32.3%, as opposed to 29.6% in Wellington and 24.7% in the rest of New Zealand.

What’s more, Auckland households are more likely to consist of five or more residents (23.9%) than households in Wellington (18.8%) or the rest of the country (16.2%).

High household density is most widespread in South Auckland, where families tend to be larger and the average socio-economic status lower. For example, 12% of households in this part of the city have three or more children, considerably more than the national average of 7.3%.

Maori and Pacific Islander households are also prevalent in South Auckland, many of them from either the E or FG quintiles (well over half of New Zealand’s Maori and Pacific Island populations fall into these categories) — and many being left behind in the current housing price boom.

Source:Roy Morgan Single Source (New Zealand), April 2012 – March 2013

Base: New Zealand population aged 14+

Michele Levine, CEO, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“Although the Government is trying to address this situation with strategies such as the Auckland Housing Accord and the New Auckland Unitary Plan, it will be some time before the balance is restored. Many thousands of new homes are needed to meet the demand, and in the meantime, property prices show no sign of declining.

“While housing prices are rising across New Zealand, Auckland’s situation is exacerbated by its population growth. With more people than available homes, it’s inevitable that prices will keep creeping up.

“Auckland’s sizeable Maori and Pacific Islanders populations must also be considered: with many of them falling into the lower socio-economic quintiles, they are at a distinct disadvantage in what is already an uneven playing field.”

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Shaun Ellis
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State of the Nation New Zealand

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