1 Aug 2016

Rise in foreign buyers in Auckland

3:45 pm on 1 August 2016

The proportion of Auckland homes bought by people working and paying tax overseas has increased slightly over the last few months, according to government data.

Open home sign at a house for sale in East Auckland

Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly

Land Information New Zealand's figures showed the total number of homes bought by foreign tax residents between April and June remained unchanged at 3 percent, compared with [http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/303517/3-percent-of-homes-bought-by-overseas-buyers

the previous quarter].

However, in Auckland there was a rise from 4 percent (474) to 5 percent (900).

LINZ said the information was still unreliable because one survey question continued to be misinterpreted.

"The evidence tells us that particular question, 2.2, people are misunderstanding that and we do need to improve that guidance," Land Information's deputy chief executive Russell Turner said.

The foreign buyer question seemed to exclude international students and people on temporary tax rates.

"The tax residency information is reported very clearly and very well [but] the housing policy questions, there is still work that needs to be done and we will be doing that work over the next six months or so."

However, Mr Turner said the survey was a slight improvement on the last one.

"We do have more confidence in the data, because we have that new option for people to self select whether they are corporate or individuals," he said.

The government started collecting the data last October, to get a better picture of the residential housing market.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs