22 Feb 2024

Rents could increase throughout this year - Trade Me

10:11 am on 22 February 2024
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Auckland townhouses are at a record high of $730, up 5 percent over the same period last year. (file image) Photo: 123rf

A property expert has warned rental prices could continue to rise throughout this year.

Trade Me's latest Rental Price Index shows the national median weekly rent surged to $630 last month - a 0.8 percent increase on December.

Auckland also overtook the Bay of Plenty for the highest weekly rental prices in January, with a median rent of $680.

Trade Me property sales director Gavin Lloyd said if the Reserve Bank decided to lift the Official Cash Rate next week, higher costs for borrowing could be past onto renters.

"As borrowing costs rise, landlords may face increased expenses, and some could pass on these costs to tenants through higher rents," Lloyd said.

"This change might make it a bit tougher for renters with the rising cost of living and lack of properties available giving them fewer options when searching for a property."

Rental prices for apartments and townhouses have also increased, with townhouses in Christchurch up 12.5 percent on the same time last year, making the median weekly rent $450.

Auckland townhouses are at a record high of $730, up 5 percent over the same period last year.

Lloyd said as net migration was almost at an all-time high, more people were coming into the country looking for entry level rentals like apartments and townhouses.

Supply in the rental market is also up 15 percent in January compared to December.

Wellington had the biggest supply boost with a 38 percent jump in the number of rentals available over the same period.

While supply has increased in the capital, demand has also surged in the city - with a 94 percent increase.

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