What Kiwi first home buyers are looking for

by NZ Adviser21 Mar 2016
A survey commissioned by Barfoot & Thompson has revealed some critical points about what young Aucklanders are looking for in their first property purchase. 

“(The survey) provides an interesting glimpse into what the future market could look like, and poses some compelling questions around how this market’s needs and wants might be met,” said Barfoot & Thompson managing director Peter Thompson.

The survey asked more than 500 Aucklanders aged 18 to 34 who are yet to own a property, about their future living plans and confirming the enduring strength of the Kiwi Dream. 

91% of those surveyed aspired to own their own home, and of them, nearly half were taking action towards achieving their dream.

​Most of Auckland’s young aspiring home buyers would still consider buying in the city (74%), however the surrounding regions of the Waikato (considered by 15%), Bay of Plenty (13%), Wellington (10%) and Northland (10%) were the next best alternatives.

Buying in Auckland also means that 43% of the future market anticipate paying $700,000 or more for their first home, while just over a quarter (29%) are expecting to pay between $500,000 and $699,000.

Outside Auckland, however, only 8% would expect to pay more than $700,000, while more than half (48%) expect to pay under $400,000.

While nearly one-in-three respondents who are keen to own a home are considering going it alone, 62% intend to purchase with a partner.

“This may be as much a financial reality as it is about settling down, but it is in step with what many first home buyers have done before them,” says Thompson. 

“The number thinking of buying with family or friends in future is relatively low and comparable to those who purchased their first home between 2010 and 2015, whom we questioned in our original First Home Survey last year,” he added.

The aspiration for a stand-alone house is still strong, with 70% of home-hopefuls aiming for their own little slice of paradise, while only 9% are considering an apartment.

However, the youngest of those surveyed, aged 18 and 19 years old, were more than twice as likely to choose an apartment (22%) as their first property.

“The apartment market in Auckland is growing with considerable pace, and while there are some first home buyers, there are equally as many luxury downsizers and investors.

“So while these small numbers may point towards a growing desire for high-density living among younger people, many first-timers are still after a stand-alone home.”

Becoming a landlord was a more likely option for those looking to buy in the next couple of years (15% vs 6% of those looking to purchase in three or more years).

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