The Massey University March 2012 Home Affordability index for the Manawatu Wanganui region is 71.27% against the All Districts national index of 100%. This puts us in 2nd place, following Southland on 54.5% as the most affordable region. Otago is 3rd at roughly the same as us (71.5%), and Auckland has just taken over from Central Otago Lakes District as the least affordable region, with 125.3%.
Affordability in Manawatu Wanganui improved 13.2% over the last year. Canterbury Westland was the only region to become less affordable over the year.
Nationally, affordability is about the same as in 2004. It was a lot less affordable between 2004 and now.
Affordability considers average weekly earnings, median residential dwelling prices and mortgage interest rates. House prices have been roughly static for some time, incomes, especially after tax incomes, have increased, and interest rates are at a long term low. The biggest threat to affordability in my opinion is increased interest rates. Fixed interest rates are available to give budget security however.
People will look back at 2012 as being a great time to buy a home or investment property in my opinion.
Kind regards, Michael