All of New Zealand’s major cities were rated as “seriously” or “severely” unaffordable, with a house in the least expensive city, Palmerston North, priced at five times the median income.
Mr. Pavletich, one of the report’s authors, said smaller markets like Tauranga, a coastal city on the North Island with a population of 128,000, had seen an influx of people who had left Auckland in search of more affordable housing. Average property values in Tauranga had risen to $497,000 from $304,000 in the last five years, and Demographia now rated it among the 10 least affordable cities in the world — along with famously expensive locales such as Hong Kong, San Francisco, Sydney and Vancouver, British Columbia.
People, I have been to Palmerston North (though not Tauranga, which seemed too empty and remote, now the fifth largest urban cluster in a country of 4.8 million), way back in the 1990s, and I recall a feeling of dullness above all else. If you had asked me whether this outcome was possible, I sooner would have thought Donald Trump would be elected president.
Here is the full NYT story by Charlotte Graham-McLay. P.s. they haven’t built enough homes.