Real Estate And Housing Options In New Zealand For Retirees

Whether you choose to rent or buy, finding accommodations in New Zealand is fairly simple. Housing options in New Zealand tend to be reasonably priced compared to the United States and Europe. Where you choose to buy property in New Zealand greatly affects the cost. In Auckland, for example, real estate prices can be twice what they are in other New Zealand cities.
Condos and apartments are popular choices for retirees in New Zealand. Apartment purchases have been increasing in popularity in New Zealand, and prices are rising. Apartments in major cities such as Wellington and Auckland can sell for as much as good sized house in a less popular area.

Cost of Real Estate in New Zealand

The mean price of a home in New Zealand is about $250,000. In suburban Auckland, this increases to $370,000, and as you get closer to the city, the average cost of a house is about $420,000.
If you’re new to New Zealand, you may want to spend the first two years of your retirement visa renting. Rental prices are generally comparable to the low-end of normal in the United States. Apartments can range from $500 to $1,500 per month for a three bedroom apartment in less expensive, but still desirable locations.
The average monthly rent for a one bedroom in a major city center is about $750, which drops to about $550 outside of the city. If you choose to live in Auckland, the average monthly rent is about $850.

Finding a Real Estate Agent in New Zealand

Your expat community may be able to recommend a few real estate agents who are experienced in dealing with foreign buyers.
Before completing the purchase, request to see the Land Information Referendum, which documents zoning, hazardous materials and other important details about the property.
Because the real estate process in New Zealand is relatively standard, many American expats feel a real estate agent offers enough guidance to forgo the services of a lawyer. A real estate agent can help you find the best property type, location and price for your lifestyle.
A real estate lawyer may help you understand the taxes affecting retirees in New Zealand. If a lawyer isn’t an option for you, consider consulting experienced members of your expat community.