Want an affordable house? Try post-quakes Christchurch

Christchurch is the place to go for affordable housing if a report released at the weekend is anything to go by.

The June Monitoring Greater Christchurch Regeneration report collates data in six key areas as the southern city continues to recover from the quakes of 2010 and 2011.

It says housing affordability in greater Christchurch has been improving since 2014.

The average weekly rent has continued to fall, with the proportion of private bonds lodged for rents below $400 a week increasing.

For buyers, Christchurch experienced the lowest house price growth among 15 main areas in New Zealand between April 2014 and April 2017, the report says.

For 77.8 percent of renting households in Canterbury, buying was unaffordable in the June 2015 quarter, down from 84.3 percent in the September 2010 quarter.

Homes are more affordable for first-time buyers in Christchurch because average household incomes in Canterbury have grown faster than the cost of housing since 2010 and 2011 earthquakes, the report says.

The earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 damaged about three quarters of Canterbury's housing stock.

The population of greater Christchurch dropped sharply in the first two years following the initial 2010 earthquake but by 2016 it had fully recovered and exceeded the 2010 population by 5.2 percent.

In the central city, however, there are still 32.3 percent fewer residents.

The population has also become more diverse with the influx of construction workers.

NZN