New Zealanders are paying more for rent overall, despite a drop in demand, according to Trade Me’s March rental price index.
The amount of rent tenants are paying has risen by roughly 7 percent in the past year to the end of March, and now sits at around $575 a week.
Trade Me says the jump is in line with record-high inflation and will be hard for renters.
“It’s not an easy time to be a renter as Kiwis are having to fork out significantly more for everyday items across the board, including housing costs,” says Trade Me property sales director, Gavin Lloyd.
Not all parts of New Zealand have seen the same rate of rent rise in the past year.
The largest growth in median weekly rent has been in the Taranaki region, growing a whopping 18 percent in the past year to reach $530.
Meanwhile, the Manawatū/Whanganui has seen a 14 percent jump in the past year, meaning the median weekly rent is now $500 for the first time ever.
The Bay of Plenty has seen a 9 percent jump in the past year, with the median weekly rent reaching $600 a week.
And the Waikato has seen a rise of 7 percent, with rent now around $520 a week.
Rental prices in Auckland, meanwhile, remain at an all-time high. The city has seen a 3 percent rise in the past year or so to reach roughly $610.
However, there is some good news for tenants.
Lloyd says there has been no change compared to February’s figures, meaning that rents have remained stagnant.
“However, time will tell whether this continues as we head into the cooler months,” he cautions.
Overall, the supply of rental properties has seen a 6 percent drop in the past year to the end of March.
The biggest drops in supply have been in Nelson/Tasman, Canterbury and Otago.
Auckland and Wellington have both bucked this trend, seeing a 2 percent and 7 percent rise in supply respectively.
And there are fewer people looking for rentals, with demand dropping 7 percent year-on-year overall.
Despite the drop in supply, Trade Me has seen the number of rental listings increase by 5 percent between February and March.
The amount of rent people are paying for 1-2 bedroom properties also saw record annual record growth in the March figures, reaching $500 a week on average.
The Rental Price Index is produced from Trade Me data of the roughly 11,000 properties it rents out per month.
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