News and Publications

Property News: 24 June 2019

Landlords selling up

Nelson investors are selling older rental properties as new rules bite, and the region’s ‘‘five-minute lifestyle’’ is attracting more out-of-town buyers, real estate agents say.

The trends come as figures show house prices in the region have doubled in the last 16 years.

Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ) spokesman for Nelson, Darryl Marshall, said owning residential rental properties had become more challenging and expensive given legislation changes, including insulation and heating requirements.

Marshall said there was increasing interest in buying newer investment properties, and the profile of investors had changed.

He also said Nelson was a destination people often visited on holiday before deciding they wanted to live here.

(The Nelson Mail, Monday 17 June 2019)

Mapua upgrade under way

Archeological finds from early Maori settlements may be unearthed during a multimillion-dollar infrastructure upgrade at Mapua.

An early-morning karakia (blessing) on Monday, under a starry sky and a bright moon marked the start of the $6.2 million construction phase of the Tasman District Council project.

The work to replace a fragile main water pipe and upgrade an at-times overwhelmed wastewater system in the growing seaside village is expected to take about 18 months to complete.

Archeological finds, including human remains, were made in 2015 during the construction of the council’s Shed 4 development at Mapua Wharf. Any further finds during the infrastructure upgrade will come as no surprise to Moutere-Waimea Ward councillor Dean McNamara. ‘‘There’s highly likely to be material of interest turn up,’’ he said.

Donaldson Civil has been awarded the contract to complete the project, which is starting at Mapua Wharf before moving along Aranui Rd and Stafford Drive.

The work along Aranui Rd is scheduled to stop in December, during the busy summer holiday season, and resume in mid-April 2020. Work outside Mapua School is set to take place during school holidays. The project is due to be finished at the end of 2020.

(The Nelson Mail, Wednesday 19 June 2019)

TDC finances in 'positive space'

Tasman District Council predicts it will end the financial year with more income than anticipated, along with lower expenditure and less net debt.

A financial update, due to be considered by councillors tomorrow, says net debt is forecast to be about $155 million at the end of June – well below a total of more than $189m that was budgeted in its Long Term Plan.

Operating income is tipped to reach $122.9m by year-end, up $7.1m on the budget of $115.8m.

More than $900,000 in additional revenue is expected to come from the council’s environment and planning department, mostly from its building control section, which reflects a higher level of consent processing.

A larger-than-expected dividend from Port Nelson Ltd is the main driver of $1.97m in extra income for the departmental overheads.

If there was a cash surplus at the end of the financial year, the council would decide how it was used. It might agree to fund ‘‘one or two projects’’ or pay off some debt, Kempthorne said.

(The Nelson Mail, Wednesday 19 June 2019)

Fee hike fears for vulnerable

The Brook campground’s fees will increase by 20 per cent at the end of the month, leaving some councillors concerned for vulnerable permanent residents.

Nelson City Council manager of parks and facilities Rosie Bartlett said the proposed increase was meant to bring revenue from the Brook ‘‘closer to what’s stipulated in the fees and charges recovery policy’’.

‘‘The camp in the last financial year was requiring $342,000 to help subsidise the activity there . . . the original 20 per cent increase was proposed to minimise the amount that ratepayers need to subsidise that activity,’’ she said.

After debate the council ultimately voted to increase fees by a flat 20 per cent rate, without exception. It will come into effect next month, and will increase the rates permanent residents pay from $66 per week for a site or $80 per week for a powered site, to $79 and $96 respectively.

(The Nelson Mail, Friday 21 June 2019)

Pensioner housing reviewed

A review of the Tasman District Council community housing portfolio is under way.

Mayor Richard Kempthorne confirmed the possibility of divestment was part of the review, though it wasn’t his preference.

A workshop on the issue was held last week. It comes as Nelson City Council has decided to sell its 142 properties.

(The Nelson Mail, Friday 21 June 2019)

Good progress on dam, councillors told

Work on the massive Waimea dam project is progressing well with the access road half-completed, says the company building it.

Waimea Water Ltd chief executive Mike Scott has presented Tasman District Council with a six-month progress report on the $104.4 million project.

‘‘We’re well under way and progress is good,’’ Scott told councillors.

Despite a three-week ‘‘mobilisation’’ delay at the start of the year because of a high fire risk in the region, the team was about halfway through the construction of the 6.5km access road to the site in the Lee Valley, near Brightwater.

Waimea Water along with its consulting engineer, Damwatch Engineering, and contractor, a consortium of Fulton Hogan and Taylors Contracting, was looking at opportunities to reduce costs, optimise the design and de-risk the project.

In the next two months, construction of the access road would continue along with work on river diversion. There was a plan to start clearing vegetation in the dam reservoir footprint area as well as commencing construction of temporary coffer dams.

Councillors later adopted Waimea Water’s final Statement of Intent 2019-20, which had changed little from the draft document they received in March.

(The Nelson Mail, Saturday 22 June 2019)

Thought for the Week

Thought for the week 24 June 2019