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Christchurch rents leap as listings fall

10:00 AEST Fri Jul 6 2012
AAP
Rents have soared in earthquake-damaged Christchurch, particularly in central city and eastern suburbs
Rents have soared in earthquake-damaged Christchurch, particularly in central city and eastern suburbs

Rents in Christchurch have sky-rocketed 26 per cent in the past year while nationally rents are up just 4 per cent, according to Trade Me Property's analysis for the three months ended June compared with the same quarter last year.

At the same time, listings of houses for rent in Christchurch are down 34 per cent, even as demand jumped 47 per cent. Nationally, listings are up 4 per cent while demand is steady.

"The news for prospective Christchurch tenants is still grim," said Brendon Skipper, head of Trade Me Property.

The "pressure cooker" suburbs in Christchurch are the central city, Linwood and St Albans.

"We've seen the number of properties available for rent in these three suburbs plummet more than 40 per cent on a year ago and, on the flipside, the properties that do get listed are attracting huge volumes of enquiry," Mr Skipper said.

While shortages of houses to rent in the Auckland have prompted media coverage, Trade Me found listings in the city are up 20 per cent and demand is down 18 per cent.

"The winter hibernation period sees tenants hunker down so we often see listing numbers swell and demand taper off," Mr Skipper said.

Still, the increase in listings and reduced demand in central Auckland hasn't led to lower rents, he said. Average rents in Auckland city are flat, while Manukau's and Waitakere's are up 4 per cent and North Shore's are up 5 per cent.

One reason demand has softened in Auckland is that tenants are looking to become home owners, he said.