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Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Old Jan 28th 2015, 12:03 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Originally Posted by davros1984 View Post
Useful advice to the original poster. Are you definitely set on Auckland or are other areas an option? Your money will go a lot further outside of Auckland.

I don't necessarily agree Auckland is like London, Auckland is more like a Cardiff or Edinburgh, but take away at least 50% of the restaurants, pubs and other facilities that Cardiff and Edinburgh have, then give it London property prices. Although Auckland does have some stunning beaches and the Waitakere ranges
Sorry mate but I strongly disagree

London to UK is exactly the same as Auckland to New Zealand
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 12:05 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Originally Posted by davros1984 View Post
Useful advice to the original poster. Are you definitely set on Auckland or are other areas an option? Your money will go a lot further outside of Auckland.

I don't necessarily agree Auckland is like London, Auckland is more like a Cardiff or Edinburgh, but take away at least 50% of the restaurants, pubs and other facilities that Cardiff and Edinburgh have, then give it London property prices. Although Auckland does have some stunning beaches and the Waitakere ranges
We are getting a bit off topic here, but are you aware that the median house sale price in London is now over $NZ1 million?
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 12:12 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Originally Posted by Perry Groves View Post
Hi, Can anyone tell me if there are any reasonably safe areas in Auckland for someone looking to buy a house with a budget of around $500,000 for 3-4 bedrooms?
I think you should elaborate on where the $500,000 figure comes from. And do you need to buy straight away? Increasing deposit and increasing buying capacity?

There are issues which will increase your buying capacity, and changes are happening in the market as we speak.

Its not just one big market but a series of sub markets that interact. Stress on lower end if forcing a higher percentage of investor buyers i.e. non buyer occupier. Changes in housing affordability are affecting companies retaining good staff.

There are opportunities to buy 10% less than the market but it takes time and research. Understand that not all property is coming on the market despite owners wanting to sell. Some sit back and are concerned about the effort involved and risk of not selling. When approached directly they benefit from not having to pay excessive agent fees (much higher rates than in the UK)

Sorry for the war and peace.
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 12:52 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

lets not turn this into UK (London) NZ (Auckland) debate as we all have been there and done those sort of debates to death.

The OP is asking about Auckland, lets stick to that and help and advise on exactly that.
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 1:18 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

I was going to suggest Waiheke. Very safe and beautiful. Island life not for everyone of course - groceries etc more expensive and you have to factor in costs of getting off the island for work/travel. But only 35 min on ferry to CBD.

Until recently you could get a 3-4 bed around $500k there but looking at Trade Me they now seem to be upwards of $600k.
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 1:31 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Originally Posted by A Rush And A Push View Post
I was going to suggest Waiheke. Very safe and beautiful. Island life not for everyone of course - groceries etc more expensive and you have to factor in costs of getting off the island for work/travel. But only 35 min on ferry to CBD.

Until recently you could get a 3-4 bed around $500k there but looking at Trade Me they now seem to be upwards of $600k.
Good suggestion ARAAP

There are now 2 ferry companies toying for business?

warning about taxis - $30 for 7 minute journey

They have different vessels and journey times accordingly.

Other quick journey times I found were - 20 minutes Britomart to Panmure
Panmure to Pakuranga is about 10 minutes - just getting the right timing off the train is critical.

I keep thinking about Papatoetoe for the OP. There are some wonderful streets in the area and in reality all of Auckland is safe. Even Otara is safe, from experience during the Samoan/Tongan wars with machetes and beheadings it was still safe for joe blogs walking down the street - or in my case white guy cycling to tech.

What about North Otahuhu which I think is described as Mt Wellington. Great location for access to and from city (train, bus, car). Around Panama road. Or what about beach side of the motorway that looks back on highbrook drive?

Pukekohe via train - the trains only go as far as manukau city on electric, diesel only for further south. This however is due to change shortly - but in reality I don't think you would care it sit back and surf time.

I'm checking out northern beaches this weekend but different budget areas, but assume its mainly car journey and bus from there.
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 5:29 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Originally Posted by Parnell View Post
There are opportunities to buy 10% less than the market but it takes time and research. Understand that not all property is coming on the market despite owners wanting to sell. Some sit back and are concerned about the effort involved and risk of not selling. When approached directly they benefit from not having to pay excessive agent fees (much higher rates than in the UK).
Yeah, the developer that bought my next door neighbor's house a few years ago employed this "interesting" tactic. His company buys up properties in the South Auckland area. He seems to drive around, noticing who the occupants are looking for "suitable" properties that are not on the open market. They approached my neighbor, who's lived there nearly 30 years, and is elderly. The developer offered an attractive price. Well, attractive to the neighbor who was not aware of current market prices (I think he could have sold it for 50K more on the open market). You can imagine, to him $340K was an attractive price considering what he probably paid for it in the 1970s. The developers flipped the house, and "modernised" it Kiwi style, that is a paint job and a cheap Mitre 10 kitchen and bathroom. (the property was already in very good condition; definitely not a do up). He sold it a few months later for $420K. These guys seem to prowl neighborhoods looking for the unwary. You see lots of amateur looking signs offering immediate cash for houses in these neighborhoods. It would be very hard to find the real bargains when you're up against crooks like this.

I don't imagine the OP will be interested in buying a property by scouting out the elderly or others who are a bit out of touch with the insane Auckland prices.

We would've warned our neighbor that the price he was offered was way too low, but we were overseas when the whole business transpired. The house would likely sell these days for over $500,000, as it's well cared for and has quite a bit garden. Luckily my new neighbors have been great. A quiet family who are very tidy.
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 5:38 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Originally Posted by The Weezer View Post
Yeah, the developer that bought my next door neighbor's house a few years ago employed this "interesting" tactic. His company buys up properties in the South Auckland area. He seems to drive around, noticing who the occupants are looking for "suitable" properties that are not on the open market. They approached my neighbor, who's lived there nearly 30 years, and is elderly. The developer offered an attractive price. Well, attractive to the neighbor who was not aware of current market prices (I think he could have sold it for 50K more on the open market). You can imagine, to him $340K was an attractive price considering what he probably paid for it in the 1970s. The developers flipped the house, and "modernised" it Kiwi style, that is a paint job and a cheap Mitre 10 kitchen and bathroom. (the property was already in very good condition; definitely not a do up). He sold it a few months later for $420K. These guys seem to prowl neighborhoods looking for the unwary. You see lots of amateur looking signs offering immediate cash for houses in these neighborhoods. It would be very hard to find the real bargains when you're up against crooks like this.

I don't imagine the OP will be interested in buying a property by scouting out the elderly or others who are a bit out of touch with the insane Auckland prices.

We would've warned our neighbor that the price he was offered was way too low, but we were overseas when the whole business transpired. The house would likely sell these days for over $500,000, as it's well cared for and has quite a bit garden. Luckily my new neighbors have been great. A quiet family who are very tidy.
Good warning

But not the activity or savings I was referring too.

Take out the inflated view of agent.
Take out agent cost
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 9:11 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

We are looking to rent first for a few months. We were hoping to buy in Auckland, but judging by the prices, I think we will have to keep our options open! I was wondering if there are any "avoid at all costs" areas in Auckland?
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 10:52 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Originally Posted by Parnell View Post
Good warning

But not the activity or savings I was referring too.

Take out the inflated view of agent.
Take out agent cost
Yes, but no amount of research will uncover homeowners that might want to sell a property, but haven't put it on the market yet. You can't really start canvassing neighborhoods and asking random people if they're looking to sell. For one thing, how can you even know what a fair price is without access to recent sales information, which is something real estate agents can provide. So many houses sell as "price by negotiation" or by auction.

That's why the unscrupulous ferret out the unsophisticated homeowner, like the elderly who might be persuaded to move into a retirement unit by the promise of an immediate sale.
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 12:13 pm
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Originally Posted by Perry Groves View Post
We are looking to rent first for a few months. We were hoping to buy in Auckland, but judging by the prices, I think we will have to keep our options open! I was wondering if there are any "avoid at all costs" areas in Auckland?
Hi Perry, we've lived in South Auckland for years now and know the area very well. I can say with confidence that you would NOT want to live in Otara, it is not particularly safe, pleasant, or desirable. It's not the kind of place you can have a nice stroll in the neighborhood and feel safe, despite assertions otherwise. Think "Once Were Warriors", which takes place and was filmed there.

The only other places I suggest you avoid are parts of Manurewa. If you're interested in the suburb, I can be more specific for you.

Otherwise, the rest of South Auckland isn't too bad, relatively. I don't think you'll be able to find a 3-4 bed house in Papatoetoe on your budget, at least not one that's not really tiny, and and/or with no garden, or hard up against the train tracks, and certainly not in the better areas. Too bad, as it's not a bad commute by train from Papatoetoe into town.

You might find an ok small house (by NZ standards, anyway) in Mangere East for the budget, but even there it'll be difficult to find something that's not a very small 3 bed with little garden or not a complete do-up. Mangere East is situated along the train line (Middlemore stop, 30 minutes from the CBD by train) so would be convenient for you. It's the next stop after Otahuhu. Due to an oversight by the publisher, the often recommended guide to the suburbs of Auckland leaves out Mangere East as a separate entry, so it's not often mentioned in news media reports on property, although it's an established suburb with it's own town centre. In any event, I don't find the guide particularly accurate when it comes to the southern suburbs, especially in these days of rapid change. There is a new development offering G.J. Gardner custom but yet to be built homes, just up the road from the Mangere East town center currently for sale. (starting price high $500,000s). King's College, the expensive private college is on the border of Mangere East and Otahuhu.

Mangere, a large suburb abutting the airport and the Manukau harbour is a real mix of rural, semi rural and increasingly subdivided urban. It's not along the train line, but is close enough to the train and motorways to make it a viable commute by car. It has a popular Sat. market, which is very Pacific Island in flavor. There are several new housing developments of single family homes either currently for sale or soon to be for sale.

I wouldn't recommend Papakura. It's not really much nicer than the suburbs mentioned above (except perhaps for the Red Hill section), and it's a full hour by train to the CBD. We knew a professional couple that lived in Papakura after they emigrated from the UK. They found the very long commute too much of strain, and moved much closer to town, compromising by buying a 2 bed house, instead of the 3 bed they had been renting.

Otahuhu is a more densely urban suburb, chock full of older character houses, a bit like Grey Lynn without the artists and the pretensions, and is becoming increasingly in demand, from the looks of the prices. I viewed a very small 2-3 bed house with almost no garden on a busy street a couple of years ago, and it sold for over 410,000, but it was better renovated than the average. It's on the market again at the moment. Should be interesting to see how much the price appreciated, if any. I also attended an auction, out of curiosity, of an older character home very close to the busy main shopping street. It was very small, with a small garden. It made the news because the estate agents cooked up a $1 reserve price gimmick. It sold for over $400,000, with several bidders battling it out. Despite its increasing popularity, I don't think Otahuhu is as pleasant as the other suburbs described above. The houses seem smaller and grubbier overall. There's a busy shopping district along the Great South Road. Otahuhu does boast several good Thai and Vietnamese restaurants, though, including Sam Woo Vietnamese Cafe, which is always popular. I've seen politicians and media personalities dining there on several occasions.

Of the suburbs I mentioned above, Mangere and Mangere East seem to be the last bastion of larger gardens, and larger gardens yet to be subdivided. They are disappearing fast, though. The greater amount of open space is a legacy of the many market gardens and profusion of glass houses that dominated the area in past decades.

If you're considering commuting by train, it might be good to know there's a lack of park and ride facilities overall.

I don't drive, so tend to walk or use public transport when I'm on my own. So much walking has given me a good knowledge of the suburbs outlined above. Also, my husband and I dabble in local history research, and like to explore all the many corners of Auckland, especially South Auckland. We've also been keen real estate watchers for years, and have kept close tabs on the local market.

One thing I have read, and seems to me to be the case, is that many South Auckland suburbs have less, not more, crimes like burglary than pricier neighborhoods. I don't think it's substantially less safe where we live. It's mostly families, and quiet with occasional hoons, like the rest of Auckland.

Last edited by The Weezer; Jan 28th 2015 at 12:17 pm.
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Old Jan 28th 2015, 5:58 pm
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

excellent post Weezer and just what the Perry was asking for. have some karma
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Old Jan 29th 2015, 4:22 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Yes thanks Weezer, most informative post
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Old Jan 29th 2015, 6:44 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Originally Posted by Perry Groves View Post
Yes thanks Weezer, most informative post
Thanks MrsFychan and Perry.

I was thinking, Perry, that you didn't mention if you'll be looking at school districts. In most of the areas I mentioned, you might consider sending the children to schools out of district. Of course, if you don't have children, then it's not worry.
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Old Jan 29th 2015, 10:47 am
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Default Re: Auckland reasonably affordable areas for families

Originally Posted by The Weezer View Post
Thanks MrsFychan and Perry.

I was thinking, Perry, that you didn't mention if you'll be looking at school districts. In most of the areas I mentioned, you might consider sending the children to schools out of district. Of course, if you don't have children, then it's not worry.
We do have children, so that will be a consideration.
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