NZ’s wealthiest suburb
Census 2013 figures show that Kaiwharawhara has, in less than a decade, become the most highly paid community in the country, with the median personal income of $66,300.
It is one of a cluster of Wellington suburbs, including Oriental Bay and Wadestown, that are on the top earners list, crowding out upmarket Auckland suburbs such as Herne Bay. The median incomes of some other areas in the Wellington region are Wadestown $56,600, Oriental Bay $55,600, Porirua Central, $ 10,300, Cannons Creek North $15,800 and Trentham South $17,000.
Unlike more established suburbs, almost nobody lived in Kaiwharawhara a decade ago.
It was dominated by big-box retail, warehouses, and factories.
But between 2006 and last year the population more than doubled to about 120 people, after developers The Pritchard Group gained approval to divide and sell a section of hill, known as Harbourside, for housing.
On paper, Kaiwharawhara has both the highest personal and household median income in the country.
Regardless of precise incomes, the change in Kaiwharawhara since 2006 has been remarkable, with population more than doubling and the median personal income rising from $45,000 to more than $60,000.
Clues to its high income can be found in the census figures.
The small community is older than most in the capital, with a median age of 41, and heavily skewed towards middle age, rather than over-65s.
Residents are disproportionately married couples, but most of them have no children at home.