What are the top factors to keep in mind when searching for a place to live in your city?
Real estate in Hamilton is consistently buoyant and good rental properties can be difficult to find. A transferee is encouraged to have a personal reference or testimonial from a previous landlord to assist in securing highly sought-after rental properties. School zoning is very strict, so it is important to select which school you would like your children to attend and know the correct zoning for the school before choosing a suburb in which to purchase or rent.
When choosing a place to live, some important factors to consider are safety, location preference and individual needs. Depending on your preferences, you may want to find a place close to a school, church, transportation, shops, medical facilities, work and, most importantly, an area that is secure and safe. As with other cities in New Zealand, choosing the right place to live is essential to having a pleasant and safe stay in Hamilton.
What are the most popular neighborhoods in your city for expats?
The Hamilton Eastside/Hillcrest area is the most sought-after housing area in the city. This is because of its close proximity to the central business district (directly across the river) and also the excellent standard of educational facilities within the area, including a university. It is an older area of town and the homes are generally 15 to 35 years old. There is a wide variety of housing available, ranging from three- and four-bedroom homes, smaller attached one- and two-bedroom units and blocks of flats (which are popular with students).
Hamilton South/Lake area is in close proximity to the Waikato Hospital and is a popular choice of location for the many doctors and medical staff who are on transfer with their work at the hospital. The housing in this area is well-established, 15 to 35 years old.
The Western/Dinsdale area of Hamilton is a popular community suburb with a nice shopping area. You'll also find an extensive selection of all types of accommodation, including some large modern homes that have been built in the last 10 years in the Western Heights area. These have beautiful views overlooking farmland.
To the northeast of Hamilton, there is currently a huge building boom taking place, with hundreds of new homes springing up almost overnight. This is a very popular area with families of all nationalities and is predominantly owner-occupied. There are very few rental properties here, but it is an excellent place to look if you are wishing to purchase a home of your own.
Do expats tend to buy or rent their homes?
Expats initially rent and then the majority tend to purchase if they are staying longer than one year. This gives them time to understand the housing market. While looking for a permanent accommodation to rent or buy in Hamilton, you can opt to stay at motels, serviced apartments or holiday houses, other than hotels. Please refer to websites below for further information.
Typically, will I be required to pay additional money up front (such as a deposit) before moving into leased housing? If so, how much is common?
When renting, you are required to pay a bond equivalent to two or three weeks' rent. This is held in a Trust Account by a third party and returned at the end of the tenancy providing there is no rent owed or damages to the property. Rent is always paid in advance, usually weekly or fortnightly and, if the property is obtained through a letting agent, there is also a fee to be paid of one weeks' rent plus GST (Government Service Tax) of 15%. In summary, you could be required to have 5 weeks' rent prior to moving into a rental property: two weeks' rent in advance, two to three weeks' bond and one week to cover the letting fee.
Are utilities generally included in the price of rent, or are they extra?
Utilities are usually additional to rental prices. Very seldom are they included in the rent.
Are there special security concerns I should be aware of in regards to my home or choice of neighborhood?
Hamilton is generally a safe, relatively crime-free place to live. However, one or two areas have a history of problems and it would be best to make inquiries as to where these areas are before deciding to purchase or rent a home.
I’m not sure if I should bring my appliances. What is the electric current, Hz and plug shape in your city?
The electric current for New Zealand is 230-240 volts. The electrical Hertz (Hz) is 50 hertz of power.
Plugs have two or three prongs in a triangular shape. Although adaptors are available, it is considered better to purchase small appliances on arrival.
Type I plug - Oblique flat blades with ground (inverted V)
Do you have any other accommodation information that might help me?
Good rental properties are hard to find and it is advisable that transferees have a personal reference or testimonial from a previous landlord to assist in securing highly sought-after rental properties.
Some useful terms:
- Flat - a dwelling normally shared by o a group of people
- Townhouses - several properties on shared land
- Units - dwellings joined to each other (normally single-storied)
- Bach - small holiday home
- Bungalow/villa - older, wooden home (single story) on its own piece of land
- Cottage - small, older, wooden home
Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.