< Back What are the top factors to keep in mind when searching for a place to live in your city? What are the most popular neighborhoods in your city for expats? Do expats tend to buy or rent their homes? 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? Are utilities generally included in the price of rent, or are they extra? Are there special security concerns I should be aware of in regards to my home or choice of neighborhood? I’m not sure if I should bring my appliances. What is the electric current, Hz and plug shape in your city? Do you have any other accommodation information that might help me? What are the top factors to keep in mind when searching for a place to live in your city? Make sure you are well informed about schools, school zoning and public transport to make an informed decision on your home. ↑ Top What are the most popular neighborhoods in your city for expats? The Hawke's Bay consists of two main cities located only 20 minutes apart. Napier is New Zealand's Art Deco City, a legacy of the devastating 1931 Hawke's Bay earthquake that flattened many buildings throughout the region. Hastings is the other main city and its surrounding countryside is home to fertile vineyards and orchards, beautiful parks and some fine examples of Spanish Mission architecture. Other smaller regions in the area include Havelock North and Taradale, both located inland to the west of Napier. They offer great cafes, boutique shops, art galleries and a thriving nightlife. The town of Waipukurau in Central Hawke's Bay is a thriving rural community and the southern gateway to Hawke's Bay Wine Country. With over 40 wineries in the greater Napier/Hastings area, Hawke's Bay is renowned for being New Zealand's leading (and oldest) wine and food region and, in particular, is a foremost producer of award-winning red wines. From the peace and serenity offered in rural areas to the hustle and bustle of an urban setting, choices are plentiful for those who choose to live and work in this wonderful part of New Zealand. ↑ Top Do expats tend to buy or rent their homes? Hastings and Napier offer a good range of affordable residential housing in a wide variety of suburbs and subdivisions. Home buyers in Hawke's Bay have the enviable choice of being able to live either close to the sea, in a picturesque rural setting, in a friendly suburb or in the middle of a small city. Most rural homes within Hawke's Bay are located either on or near a school bus service to the closest primary and secondary schools. Housing options within the main urban areas consist of a mix of inner-city apartments and suburban family homes. Most residential dwellings in the region are located on good-sized sections of land complete with areas for outdoor living. Green areas are important to Hawke's Bay residents and there are many community parks and gardens close to residential areas. Initially, expats usually rent their homes. If they are staying for longer than one year, then they will typically purchase a home. ↑ Top 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 of 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 will also be a fee to be paid of one weeks' rent plus GST (Government Service Tax) currently 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. ↑ Top Are utilities generally included in the price of rent, or are they extra? Utilities are usually additional to rental prices. They are seldom included in the rent. ↑ Top Are there special security concerns I should be aware of in regards to my home or choice of neighborhood? Generally, Hawke's Bay is considered a safe city in which to live. ↑ Top 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) ↑ Top Do you have any other accommodation information that might help me? Good rental properties are hard to find and transferees are advised to 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 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 own piece of land Cottage - small, older, wooden home ↑ Top IMPORTANT NOTE: 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.