Friday news in brief

Friday 17 March 2017

Life is busy and it’s easy to miss some of the stories that hit the news. So here’s a brief rundown of some of the stories that might have slipped by you this week…

By Miriam Bell

Virtual reality for Palmerston North real estate

In a New Zealand first, out of town investors keen to buy a Palmerston North property can now utilise high-resolution 3D, immersive virtual reality tours, which make use of Google’s 3D goggles and smartphones, to explore what is on offer.

Watson Real Estate Ltd’s Greg Watson said the experience brings more truth to viewing properties because the imagery is mapped using technology that provides a realistic model and accurate measurements.

“There are no misleading wide angles, unlike traditional home staging photography, and you can be the judge of what condition the house is in and how big the rooms are, before going to see it.”

The technology has huge benefit for out-of-town buyers and the Google viewers can be couriered to any location upon request, Watson said.

Read more: Agents to bid for new property listings

Asians blamed for house prices

Forty nine percent of New Zealanders believe that Asian people are responsible for skyrocketing house price growth, according to a new survey by the Asia New Zealand Foundation.

Survey respondents pointed to coverage of housing related stories – including the supposed contribution of Asian property speculators to Auckland’s housing crisis – as examples of the effect of Asian investment in New Zealand.

Concern about the impact of Asian buyers on house prices was greatest in Auckland and Hamilton (54% in both cities) and provincial cities.

The survey said this was not surprising given public debate over Auckland house prices as well as the halo effect of those prices on Hamilton’s housing market.

Read more: Decline in foreign buyers - LINZ

Investors unaware of draft meth standard

Less than a quarter (24%) of property investors involved in new Crockers research were aware of the new draft standards relating to meth contamination levels, testing and remediation.

Just 2% of investors submitted comment on the new draft standards, which are due to be finalised in April.

This is despite the Crockers research revealing that only 8% of investors surveyed felt landlords have adequate protection from meth contamination, while 46% of investors felt it is becoming more of a problem.

Eight percent of investors felt that meth contamination is staying the same, while no investors felt it was becoming less of a problem.

Read more: Moving forward on meth contamination

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