Property prices double in Central Otago boom

Tuesday 11 May 2004

While expatriates and overseas buyers jockey for a sliver of Queenstown, another property boom is taking place in its shadow.

In the gentle hills of Central Otago, finding accommodation can be as difficult as finding gold.

Areas better acquainted with the ups and downs of farming are now experiencing unheard-of house prices and record building activity.

Quiet farming towns like Omakau and Ranfurly have seen their land values double, as holiday makers, tradespeople and first-time buyers all queue up for a piece of "central".

Is Central Otago going through a renaissance? "Definitely," says Alexandra real estate agent Dick Anderson, of Harcourts.

"In 2025 Wanaka is expected to be as large as Dunedin if it continues its current growth pattern."

Much of the growth has spilled out of the land grab in Queenstown and Wanaka. Accommodation is so dear there that tradespeople associated with the construction work – and holiday makers wanting cheaper cribs – have been forced to look elsewhere.

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