The value of good community

Feilding is a good community in my humble opinion. We have many people and organisations who are prepared to do things for others without financial return. These are people with real generosity of spirit, who in their own way make Feilding a better place to live.  

I have just been to Lyttelton, which also has a number of great voluntary organisations working to make Lyttelton better after the devastating earthquakes. 

I am possibly parochial and biased, but I believe that smaller communities like Feilding and Lyttelton attract good people, willing to give of themselves. We see it in the villages and rural districts of the Manawatu as well. Such people keep our clubs and organisations going and add greatly to the benefit of living in a quality country town like Feilding.  

Add a good dollop of positive economic activity and we have the basis of a vibrant and thriving community that attracts new people and businesses. This helps our property values as well. Long may it continue! Keep up the good work, and thank you.



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Yet another good month

The number of Feilding houses sold through all Licensed Real Estate Agents was 37 for May, which is a very strong number. Feilding’s median sale price is now $339,000 calculated over three months. Less than three years ago it was $240,000 – $250,000, so value growth is strong. Palmerston North has 160 sales which is also strong.


Median house prices in May, calculated over three months, were:

Feilding                                $339,000             

Palmerston North                370,000

New Zealand                         560,000             

Eastern Suburbs AK          1,579,000

Auckland total                      850,000             

Wellington total                  578,000

Levin                                      296,000             

Whanganui                           214,750

Rangitikei                              262,000             

Pahiatua                                193,500



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Good marketing counts in good and bad markets

In a strong market, good marketing attracts more potential buyers to compete for your property. We handle a multiple offer situation very carefully to ensure that all potential buyers are treated fairly. It generally results in a good sale at a very good price for our Sellers, which is the purpose of engaging us. 

In a slow market, good marketing is required to find a buyer. There may not be competition from multiple buyers, but we want action. We want to sell the property for a fair price, which is the purpose of engaging us. We can’t do this, if potential buyers aren’t told that the property is available to be purchased. 

Different buyers search for properties in different ways, which is why we need to use a variety of marketing mediums, several of which are only available to Licensed Real Estate Agents.




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‘P’ Methamphetamine – Danger To Health?

I am delighted that the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor, Professor Sir Peter Gluckman has announced that passive exposure to the residue from meth smoking is not harmful to human health. I have suspected that for some years, based on comments from Massey Scientist Dr Nicholas Kim and others. It never made any sense to me that a standard for the clean-up of a meth lab should be applied to third-hand exposure to meth smoke residue. 

Unless levels are at least 10 times and probably 20 times higher than the ‘current clean-up standard,’ only smoking will likely have occurred in a dwelling being tested, as opposed to the far more noxious ‘cooking’ that takes place using solvents in a meth lab.  

In short, third-hand exposure to methamphetamine smoke residue is safe, and exposure to a rare meth lab can be harmful to health.  

In most cases therefore, testing and cleaning will not be warranted, unless there are suspicions that a lab existed.  There will be a new standard issued, which can’t come fast enough. 

I feel great sympathy for the thousands of people who have spent large sums of unnecessary money on testing and cleaning in recent years, and for the thousands of people who were worried unnecessarily about the health of their loved ones and tenants.




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Reid Line Floodway

Following the devastating February 2004 flood/storm event, Horizons Regional Council moved quickly to protect Feilding from the Makino Stream flooding again. The Reid Line Floodway was commissioned, and the protection for Feilding lifted from a 1 in 30 year flood to a 1 in 100 year flood. The Floodway has worked well with a few exceptions, and improvements have been made. 

With climate change producing further volatility of weather patterns, and more rain, we expect big storms ahead. Palmerston North has protection from a 1 in 500 year flood event.

Horizons have consulted on increasing Feilding’s protection to a 1 in 200 year event. I strongly support this proposal and have submitted in favour, as has Manawatu District Council. In my opinion the cost is negligible in comparison to the potential devastation of a major flood. Another flood would create on-going insurance difficulties, would negatively affect property values, and potentially turn growth to decline. I hope that Horizons decide to proceed.



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Another Good Month

The number of Feilding houses sold through all Licensed Real Estate Agents was 31 for April, which is a good steady number. Feilding’s median sale price is now $310,750 calculated over three months, and $320,000 for the month of April only. Less than three years ago it was $240,000 – $250,000, so value growth is strong. 

Median house prices in April, calculated over three months, were:

Feilding                                $310,750             

Palmerston North               $370,000

New Zealand                        $549,950             

Eastern Suburbs AK         $1,545,000

Auckland total                   $ 850,000             

Wellington total                 $570,550

Levin                                     $295,000             

Wanganui                        $211,500

Rangitikei                            $ 263,750             

Pahiatua                               $190,000



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International House Sizes

New Zealand has the third largest average new house size after Australia and USA, with China and Hong Kong having the smallest. It is difficult to compare, because most of the world is building apartments, whereas a few countries are predominantly building detached homes. We don’t have comparisons for most third world countries.

While some of this information is a bit historical and incomplete, it is still interesting, and the differences are significant. Here are some approximate examples:

Country                                Floor area (all new)        Floor area (new detached)

Australia                              206m2                                   2235m2

USA                                       203m2                                   221m2

New Zealand                      176m2                                    200m2

Denmark                             137m2

Japan                                    132m2                                   187m2

Canada                                                                                 177m2

Belgium                                119m2

France                                  113m2

Germany                              109m2

Austria                                    96m2

Ireland                                    82m2

Sweden                                  83m2

United Kingdom                   76m2

China                                       65m2

Hong Kong                             50m2




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What is a covenant on a property?

A restrictive covenant is a private agreement between land owners where one party will restrict the use of its land in some way for the benefit of another’s land. Restrictive covenants, once agreed between the parties, are placed on the certificate of title to the property. They bind the land and not the parties personally. The covenantor makes a promise to the covenantee to do (affirmative covenant) or not to do some action (negative covenant).

Examples include fencing covenants whereby the original Developer does not have to contribute 50% to the cost of fences in a new development, height restrictions to protect a view, and quality covenants which  require a certain standard of dwelling, and may prohibit certain things such as second hand houses, second hand building materials, certain trade vehicles etc etc.

A covenant is found on the certificate of title (CT), and not on the council land information memorandum (LIM).


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Kitset houses not new

I live in an 1890 villa. Villas were the most popular new home design from the late 1800’s through to around 1915 -1920, when they  transitioned into early bungalows. There was a great similarity of primary architectural form and layout, however there was an amazing variety of secondary architectural detail from bay windows and verandahs to windows, doors, brackets, friezes, fireplaces, chimneys, finials, balusters, newel posts. 

Expectant owners would get a catalogue or brochure from the building company, which was often also the timber mill. The brochure offered a great choice of decorative items, that could be ordered, and in some cases the brochure included entire house plans and elevations. Even items such as wallpaper and furniture could be ordered from the timber or building company. Many of the timber house components were made in the factory and assembled on site. 

We are talking today about needing kitset houses made in factories to solve the housing crisis. New Zealand had an element of that 100 – 150 years ago!



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Marketing Reach

The advantage of marketing reach is that your property benefits from potentially more Buyers or Tenants. The more people interested in your property, the greater the chance of multiple offers or better competition at auction, and a better price. 

Bayleys sell one in every five properties in New Zealand across residential, lifestyle, rural, commercial and industrial. Bayleys marketing reach is most impressive. As well as our individual data bases of buyers and tenants, Bayleys have some combined data bases for targeting interested buyers and tenants for specific property categories. 

As an example, for a modest marketing investment, my commercial landlords can have their space promoted by eDM  to over 6,500 potential  Commercial Tenants from Bayleys commercial tenant database. In addition, the property or space to lease is marketed on three commercial websites, two Facebook pages and Linkedin. Bayleys have specialist property magazines and excellent rates with the printed media. The marketing reach is most impressive. 

Different people search for properties in different ways, and it is important to use all forms of marketing to maximise the reach, in order to maximise the price.

We help clients to make money – not save money.



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