New Zealand is ranked the 13th least-affordable country to rent in the world, according to a new study out of the UK.
The Cost of Rent Index Study, released by money.co.uk on Thursday, analysed the average cost of renting a three-bedroom house in more than 50 developed countries - compared against the average living costs for a family of four. New Zealand is 13th on the list of most expensive countries to rent a three-bedroom house and 10th on the list of countries spending the highest percentage of monthly outgoings on rent.
In the past three years, rents across New Zealand have increased by $58 per week- or $232 extra per month. The average rent for a three-bedroom home in Auckland is now $603.
The Cost of Rent Index Study says New Zealanders, on average, spend 33.12 percent of their total monthly outgoings on rent.
Trade Me Rental Price Index data released last week showed New Zealand rents jumped to a record high after a stagnant few months.
It reported the national median weekly rent in June $545, up from $540 between March and May.
Gavin Lloyd, Trade Me's property sales director, said record-high rents are being seen in several New Zealand regions.
"This comes down to the lack of national market supply, with the number of rental properties listed onsite down by 7 percent in June when compared with the same month last year.
"Right now we are in the depths of winter which tends to be the quietest period for the rental market."
The Green Party says rent controls are needed.
"There are a number of different variables and ways in which you could set up a system around what rent control could look like," Green MP Chlöe Swarbrick told RNZ in May.
But the New Zealand Initiative, a think tank, released a study earlier this year insisting rent controls would worsen the crisis.
"It tends to be the case that higher-income people end up benefiting the most from rent controls," NZ Initiative senior fellow David Law told RNZ. "It reduces mobility, people don't move for jobs when they should," Dr Law said.
Meanwhile, the money.co.uk study says Hong Kong (50.25 percent), Singapore (47.08pc) and Qatar (43.73pc) are the top three countries spending the highest percentage of monthly outgoings on rent.
"In fact, Hong Kong is the only country where the average person actually pays more for their rent than all the rest of their living costs combined."