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December 2022 Market Update

by Hamish Wilson on Thu 01 Dec 2022
Regulation of property managers is coming and so is Santa!

Wow December already! The office has been very busy over the last month and will be from now into Christmas.  Students are busy changing over flats and we are scrambling to have any vacant properties filled before Christmas. 

Median Rents at an All-Time-High?

It does bemuse me with what articles make it out into the media at times.  There has been significant sabre rattling coming from Mr Orr and the central bank and it would be fair to say that the sword has been drawn there and the battle against inflation has begun.

What you might not have seen is that as at 24 November the national median rent for a property ($580) was back it an all-time high, matching the all-time high record in April of this year.

Trade Me Property Sales Director, Gavin Lloyd, said after falling to $575 in September, last month saw the national median weekly rent return to its record high. “When compared with the same month last year, this marks an increase of $20, or 4 per cent, the smallest year-on-year percentage jump we have seen since April 2022.”

The national median weekly rent for an urban property was $500 last month, seeing no change when compared with October 2021. “Taking a closer look, townhouses were the only urban property type to see a price increase, up 1 per cent year-on-year nationwide”. Mr Lloyd said while rentals for urban properties showed slower price growth when compared with the national total, it was not the same story in every region. “In Christchurch, the median weekly rent for an urban property increased a whopping 10 per cent year-on-year in October, while in the Wellington region, it fell by 1 per cent.”

Is Net Migration Steadying?

We have seen commentary around the “brain drain” and there being greener pastures in the likes of Australia or further afield.  You might be surprised to hear that September’s net migration gain for the month of 2000 people was the biggest gain since pre-Covid, although it was still only a third of the monthly average over 2019.

Kiwibank Senior Economist, Jeremy Couchman, said migrant arrivals were recovering despite visa application delays, and a delay in opening borders to non-visa waiver countries.  “It appears that after jumping out of the gates earlier in the year, long-term departures may have steadied. Meanwhile, long-term arrivals, mainly from non-New Zealand citizens, continue to steadily recover,” he said.

“A meaningful trend is developing.”  Kiwibank had upgraded its net migration forecasts to an annual peak of a 36,000 gain in a year’s time.  That was well below the average of the five years before Covid, which was close to a net 60,000 gain, but that period was the largest migration boom in recent history, Couchman said.

And to the Local Market…

While the matters above don’t all have a direct link to Christchurch, the ripple effect of it all does.  It’s easy to get bogged down in the micro detail we get feed on a macro level - there is a lot more going on for property investors.  When we play the long game, as we do, migration effects demand and demand effects rental pressure, they are all cogs in the wheel of a complicated picture.  These pressures are outside the control of Mr Orr which no doubt won’t please him.

When I look back to this time last year, we had 829 properties available for rent on Trademe and this year we are 804, this shows a yearlong battle with supply within the district.  The two-bedroom space has dropped 2% to be 32 % of the market.  Hard to tell if that is due to more being rented or a back off in supply, either way there remains some healthy competition in that space.

Regulation of Property Managers Is Coming…

With the recent announcement last week from Government regarding regulation of property managers, we are pleased to say we are ahead of the game on this one...being a REINZ accredited Property Management company. A1PM is currently one of only four Property Management companies in Christchurch that holds this accreditation status. Most of our team hold a specific qualification in Property Management too or are currently studying towards obtaining one.

As always, we do truly appreciate your business and the team and I are always just a phone call away.  We are always available for a free chat and are happy to share our experience and knowledge wherever we can be helpful.  

Wishing you and your families a very merry Christmas and safe and happy holidays!

Hamish and the Team @A1 


Hamish Wilson

Meet Hamish: a skilled builder turned people manager, conflict resolver, and property investor. As the former President of CPIA, he’s honed his leadership in an all-female office, fostering great team culture and accountability. With him, success is not just a goal, but a journey filled with laughter and triumph.