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I Am one Of Those Pesky Australians

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  • I Am one Of Those Pesky Australians

    Who wants to come over to buy a little piece or two of New Zealand. Basically I want to buy for positive cashflow as I would rather a tangible return for my investment rather than gamble for explosive growth (especially at this end of the cycle) and am prepared to hold. Anyway due to my financial circumstances the bottom third of the market is where I will be placed for a while.

    I will be coming over in Quarter 1 next year for a couple of weeks and want to be as prepared as possible before I get there. Prepare for lots of questions from me!

    I have searched the forums but not found what I am looking for. From what research I have done I can see that much of the house construction in new Zealand is very different to here in Australia and I cannot find a checklist of what is preferred by New Zealanders, what should be looked out for as a possible nasty. Add on that the fear of "leaky building syndrome" or other potentional peculiar NZ traps and it becomes very daunting.

    So here goes....

    Is there a preferred building material (Aussies love brick veneer) ? Is there a building material that should be avoided?

    Same with slabs (pads?) or stumps - preference ? Or not to worry

    Roofs - look out for what?

    Windows - aluminium common there? wood frames bad?

    Heating, cooking, water heating - best to worst types would be a help

    I read posts joking about wallpaper, is wallpaper the usual wall covering? Is painting considered weird? What about floor covering?

    Yes I am sure this post marks me as a totally green person but there will be other questions regarding interpretation of figures on locations, industries, development, zoning, council rates coming.

    Please lend a hand so I don't walk in and become a sad statistic. Any help will be most appreciated

  • #2
    Hi Tyrzz

    Welcome to the forum.

    You have got some good questions there.

    Exterior cladding: brick veneer is classed as low maintenace.
    A cladding called weatherside is also classed as low maintenance but does need painting now and again.
    Weatherboards need painting and alot of work if in a bad state of repair.

    Most houses in NZ are on piles, mainly concrete and sometimes timber.
    No termite problem in NZ.

    Roofing generally corrugated iron or colour steel on newer houses. Some have concrete tiles others have decramastic metal tiles. Decramastic rooves sometimes need recoating from about 25 yrs on.

    Corrugated rooves can last for years(50). But over time they do rust.

    I like aluminium windows because they don't need painting. Wooden window surrounds need lots of care, especially in older houses.

    Fires-most common are fire box type fireplaces with metal chimney. These chimneys need sweeping every year. However they are more effecient than an open fire place.

    Wallpaper seems to be the favourite for most houses. Although more and more investors look at painting the walls. Easier to upkeep.

    I like to walk on carpet. Especially in the colder areas of NZ. I have found that polished floorboards although looking good are colder to walk on and the boards can mark. Lino for the kitchen, bathrooms and laundry floors.

    Hope this helps.
    Send me a PM closer to the time and perhaps we can meet.

    "There's one way to find out if a man is honest-ask him. If he says 'yes,' you know he is a crook." Groucho Marx


    • #3
      Thanks so much Muppet! I'll be adding that to my knowledge database. It gives me a much better idea about the norms.

      And thanks for the offer to meet...look out for my PM early next year as I'm not going to pass up an offer like that

      Anyone else have any handy tips in this area?


      • #4
        Do people still really use wallpaper? I have never put wallpaper in a house. Paint is so much quicker and cheaper. I have done a whole 3 bedroom house in a day when necessary in paint, and all for about $200.

        I like brick homes, but they are more expensve so wooden waetherboards are most common for investment properties.

        In older houses you have to look out for sinking floors which might need re-piling, and old wiring and plumbing.

        Personally I am not too fussy. As long as it is in good condition, I dont care too much what it is made of.


        • #5
          So many questions , so little time, but here goes.....

          I don't know whether you are looking for new or older houses - I'll assume older (ie 1950's - 1980's) which fitts into lower-mid price range.

          Kiwis also love brick & tile, but it is almost always brick veneer fixed to
          timber frame exterior walls, timber frame interior walls with gib. bd. lining, and concrete tile roofs. These were generally more expensive to build and therefore in more desirable areas. we do not have any of those nasty termites in NZ so timber frame/weatherboard construction was used extensively for housing.
          Older houses were very well constructed using hardwood (particulary ex govt. housing stock) and should not pose any major problems. Later on timber treatment became available so the softwood timber could be used and materials such as fibre-cement claddings were used.

          Aluminium frame windows started to be used in the 1970's and generally would be in need of replacement about now.
          The disadvantage with timber windows is the maintenance factor
          also applies to weatherboards & corrugated iron roofing.

          Most newer houses use colorsteel (which also requires painting
          after about 15 yrs) and good quality powdercoated alumiumn windows

          Some things to avoid in newer houses:
          Plaster coatings over polystyrene cladding.
          Flat roofs & decks with rooms built in below.
          Complicated roof construction & junctions.
          Parapet walls - ie no overhang to roof - it rains a lot in nz.
          Contary to belief we are not a mediterannean country.

          There are a lot of appartments on the market especially in Auckland.
          You need to check the construction spec carefully. A lot are built out of
          timber framing and are having problems with water ingress.
          They can also be very noisy as inter-tenancy walls can be quite thin.
          Look for buildings that use concrete wall construction (they are more
          expensive but well worth it in the long run -capital gain)

          I am sure this post marks me as a totally green person
          I thought Aussies were green.. & gold.



          • #6
            Hi Andrew,
            Originally posted by RentMaster
            I have done a whole 3 bedroom house in a day when necessary in paint, and all for about $200.
            How did you do it, painting a 3-bedroom house in just a day? I assume it's the inside of the house.


            • #7
              Originally posted by fudosan
              How did you do it, painting a 3-bedroom house in just a day? I assume it's the inside of the house.
              You just need a few good friends and big rollers.
              4 people does the trick. 2 on brushed doing the cutting in, and the other 2 on rollers doing the bulk work.
              An average size bedroom takes 2 people about 30 to 40 minutes. It is easy once you get going.

              Of course that is only the first coat. You come back the second day and do it all over again to get the second coat. The second coat is always faster. But of course there goes the whole weekend.


              • #8
                Great Information

                Thankyou for the friendly welcome (I have been on forums where I have asked questions to the sound of deafening silence) I really appreciate people putting in the time to answer


                • #9

                  happy to help, as lots helped me when I got started. We are in Taupo, bottom third, happy to host you. PM me if you like. You had a few replies to materials,here is what most renters look for in Taupo.

                  We find the followowing works best for us bottom third of the market:

                  - shower over bath( families, babies, ladies like bath)
                  - internal wardrobes
                  - fireplace (in a box, not open) cold in winter here and this adds $10-15 in Taupo and turns a hard to rent into a winner, make sure it is permitted or you may find yourself without insurance
                  - garage with some workplace
                  -security lights
                  -carpets (cheap to get second hand laid)
                  -easy care garden
                  -fully fenced, keep small kids/small dogs safe

                  Safe travels.

                  Argue for your limitations and sure enough they're yours. - Richard Bach


                  • #10
                    Waddaya mean "Pesky Australian"? You're our neighbour!
                    Gimme $20k. You will receive some well packaged generic advice that will put you on the road to riches beyond your wildest dreams ...yeah right!


                    • #11
                      Yah and I want to buy your house, how much?

                      I'll be flying over next week but for work. The working holiday comes a couple of weeks after. Soooo looking forward to that, very tired and need a rest.

                      I just hope I get let out of Australia...last time I got turned back at the airport

                      And thanks Fritz, such a kind offer!