Newspaper & Websites
The New Zealand Herald is New Zealand’s primary daily newspaper. Their Herald Homes section, which comes out on Saturday, includes an extensive listing of homes for sale and open homes. It costs $1.80 per day weekdays. Rental homes are also listed in the classified section. However, there is a much more extensive listing for finding a home of rental homes online.
- http://www.trademe.co.nz has comprehensive listings of homes for sale and rental properties in all areas of Auckland and New Zealand.
- http://www.realestate.co.nz also has comprehensive listings of homes for sale, with a slightly smaller selection of rental homes.
Real Estate Agents
The primary real estate agencies in New Zealand list rentals as well as homes for sale. They have branches in all neighborhoods of Auckland.
- Barfoot & Thompson – http://www.barfoot.co.nz
- Bayleys – http://www.bayleys.co.nz
- Crockers – http://www.crockers.co.nz
- Harcourts – http://www.harcourts.co.nz
- LJ Hooker – http://www.ljhooker.co.nz
- Ray White – http://www.raywhite.co.nz
These websites will direct you to an office in your desired area. There are also several smaller, specialty agencies available in specific neighbourhoods.
Real estate agents are paid a flexible commission up to a maximum of 6% of the sale price of a property (up to 3% to the seller’s agent and up to 3% to the buyer’s, although they are usually one and the same). This is payable by the seller.
Real estate agents who arrange rentals are paid a commission equal to one week’s rent plus GST, payable by the renter.
In New Zealand, real estate agents generally work for the seller, not the buyer. So if you are looking for a house, you will likely need to do most of the initial searching on your own. Once you find a property you would like to see and make arrangements with the representing real estate agent, he or she will likely be willing to show you other similar listings in the area, but may or may not limit themselves to properties represented by their agency.
Most Kiwis have cars, so most are used to driving themselves wherever they need to go. However, if you don’t have a car or know an area well, let the real estate agent know that you don’t have transport and he or she will likely arrange to drive you to visit properties.
Due to the extremely high commission rates, in addition to sales fees and advertising rates, charged by New Zealand realtors, many home owners have started selling their houses themselves. This can save homeowners at least $12000 and in some cases up to $30,000 or more. This means that you have more room to negotiate if buying direct from the owner. A large number of websites have been set up to help facilitate privates sales including:
Do a search on Google of homes for sale by owner and you will find many more sites.