20 Nov 2017

120,000 people check Auckland property revaluations

9:48 pm on 20 November 2017

It's been the big reveal in Auckland today as home owners rushed online for their first glimpse of the council's three-yearly property revaluations.

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Photo: 123rf.com

On the first day of access to data on individual homes, 120,000 people checked out 10.3 million properties.

The scene had been set last week when Auckland Council said the average house had risen in value by 46 percent to $1.076 million since three years ago.

The valuation process is a statutory one, used to work out each property's share of the city's rating burden, which will be carved-up using the new data, next June.

RNZ sat down with Polly Williams to check the change in value on her family's two-bedroom villa in Mt Eden.

"Oh ok, $1.475 million, yeah that's nice," she joked. "That's quite a big increase from last time I think we were just over a million last time."

While it sounds a huge jump, in Auckland terms it's still six percent less than the average jump across the city.

The big factor in the valuation increases is the rising price of land, not the bricks and mortar.

In Kumeu for example, on the northwestern fringe, one house on a 1000 square metre section rose in value by 30 percent.

Next door, an 8.5 hectare farm - zoned for future residential use - rose by 159 percent.

A three bedroom home unit in once-affordable Avondale, jumped from $670,000 to $900,000 - but the eye-watering rise of more than a third is still below average for the suburb.

That rise is almost equivalent to the value of an average house in Invercargill.

Owners can challenge the valuations, but the council's head of rates Debbie Acott said it went both ways.

"What we found with the last revaluation is approximately half of the people wanted them to go up, and half wanted them to go down, so it depends what motivation people have got," she said.

On this day three years ago, the Auckland Council website crashed under the load from curious property owners.

Debbie Acott said an upgrade this time had coped with 120,000 people who weren't just checking their own property.

"They're checking a number, seemingly an average of about 10 each. You tend to want to look at your neighbours as well, or a real estate agent checking the properties they've got on file."

What it all means in terms of next year's rates bill will not become clear until next June, when Auckland Council set its new rate level.

Twenty-one other medium-sized and smaller local bodies have also completed revaluations this year, as part of the three-year cycle in which all councils go through the process.

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