On the rise
Apartments are now seen as a great value-for-money investment.
Matt Baird, Auckland projects manager There’s been a big shift since I started in property in the 90s. We’re now seeing larger, more design-focused apartments and there are a lot more owner-occupiers. What’s nice to see is that today’s buyers are discerning, they’ve travelled and have an appreciation for how great apartment living can work. On top of that, the good developers have got better and they’re really meeting the demand of the public. They’ve unlocked new parts of the city such as Wynyard Quarter, the Viaduct and Britomart, which are great places to live, work and play.
Owner-occupiers expect a quality product with good amenities. If they’re going to sacrifice 200 square metres for 100, they will, but only as long as it’s well designed and meets their touch points. As you can probably guess, many of the high-end apartments — the ones with concierge services, cinemas, wine cellars and pools — are being sold to baby boomers who expect high quality in a good location.
We used to have to sell people first on the idea of an apartment, then the apartment itself. That’s just not the case any more. The city fringe remains popular, and in the CBD the tower blocks offer a range of options from entry-level stock to high-end penthouses — along with the views that we’d all like to enjoy with apartment living. There are great small-scale developments in the suburbs, too, with developers targeting sites on ridgelines, so look for those sites if an apartment with a view is your goal.
The young professionals we see considering buying an apartment are asking themselves, “Do I buy a house in the suburbs for the same price or do I get something that’s smaller, is lockup-and-leave, and that means I can spend more time with my friends and less time in traffic?”
The answer to that is usually to choose a great apartment — and there are plenty of options.