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Thread: Christchurch vs Dunedin

  1. #1
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    Default Christchurch vs Dunedin

    Looking at moving back to NZ after nearly a decade in Aus. Would be studying and moving alone.
    Wanting opinions on the towns themselves. Rent prices/weather/accessibility/cost of living.
    From the North originally. Are they much of the same muchness?

  2. #2
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    Given that choice I would not even consider Christchurch. In ten years time, maybe, but right now it is a vast expanse of building sites, closed roads and traffic jams. We go down to Dunedin regularly because my elder daughter is at college there and we often remark how nice it is to go to a 'real' town.

    House prices much cheaper in Dunedin, the weather a little cooler but they certainly get their share of the good stuff.
    Last edited by mylesdw; 25th June 2015 at 08:48 AM.

  3. #3
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    If you value your investment, I wouldn't consider Dunedin at all. Like Australia and most parts of the world, you basically can't go wrong buying real estate in desirable locations IN MAJOR cities. Long term you will have more wealth because of the multiplication factor on the value of the house. For eg. my cousin in Dunedin 15 years buys a house for $70K, today it's only worth $150K. Same age house in Christchurch bought for $120K is now worth at least $400K (the earthquake insurance $ flowing into Christchurch has boosted house prices everywhere).

    If you're elderly, I strongly suggest again living in Christchurch because of the level of care and availability of specialists. You simply can't put a $ figure on health care access. Yes sure Dunedin looks nice but when you have a heart attack (where you survival is measured in seconds), having the appropriate medical resources is paramount.

  4. #4
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    The OP mentioned nothing about buying a house, only renting.

    What a strange way to live your life - based entirely on how much money you can make. You can't take it with you know :-)

    If you have a heart-attack in Chch you will probably die in a traffic jam somewhere on the way to hospital.

  5. #5
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    The OP mentioned nothing about buying a house, only renting.
    You do realise the price of rent is relative to the price of the house?

    What a strange way to live your life - based entirely on how much money you can make.
    Question why the big 3 cities in NZ have experienced greater growths in population than the rest of the smaller towns of NZ? Auckland is going to experience the greatest increase in population due to 1) More desirable climate, 2) THE main international port for incoming and outgoing flights (particularly to Asia). & 3) Auckland commands the biggest salaries and wages in NZ.

    If you have a heart-attack in Chch you will probably die in a traffic jam somewhere on the way to hospital.
    When you call 111, the ambulance comes and takes you to the hospital. Unlike Auckland and Wellington, Christchurch is flat and doesn't have nearly the same level of traffic congestion. If you live in Dunedin (or any small town with few specialists), it does not matter how fast you get to the hospital if the specialist teams are not available.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Super_BQ View Post
    You do realise the price of rent is relative to the price of the house?



    Question why the big 3 cities in NZ have experienced greater growths in population than the rest of the smaller towns of NZ? Auckland is going to experience the greatest increase in population due to 1) More desirable climate, 2) THE main international port for incoming and outgoing flights (particularly to Asia). & 3) Auckland commands the biggest salaries and wages in NZ.



    When you call 111, the ambulance comes and takes you to the hospital. Unlike Auckland and Wellington, Christchurch is flat and doesn't have nearly the same level of traffic congestion. If you live in Dunedin (or any small town with few specialists), it does not matter how fast you get to the hospital if the specialist teams are not available.

    If rents are relative to the houseprices, they would be cheaper in dunedin, then?

    I guess that everything is relative- not everyone prefers the more humid climate of Auckland. And salaries and wages might be higher, but living costs in Auckland, due to the prices for rent or houses, are higher than, for example, in Dunedin, I should think.

    And the hospital in Dunedin might be smaller, but due to the fact that it is a teaching hospital, I doubt that there are no specialists available. If I would follow your reasoning, we could never live in a small town like Blenheim....., but I don't want to live my life in fear of dying!

  7. #7
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    Default Dunedin

    Quote Originally Posted by Aurora31 View Post
    Looking at moving back to NZ after nearly a decade in Aus. Would be studying and moving alone.
    Wanting opinions on the towns themselves. Rent prices/weather/accessibility/cost of living.
    From the North originally. Are they much of the same muchness?
    Don't know if you are still checking replies. I just saw your question now. If you relocate to Dunedin, it would probably be best to avoid the flat areas of South Dunedin as these were affected by flooding recently. It sounds like you'd be studying at the University of Otago, in which case you might want to find an apartment or flat near the university. The areas directly adjacent to the university are full of student flats that are full of notoriously hard-partying students (unsightly piles of beer bottles and old furniture in front of student flats, shoes dangling from power lines, couch-burning). I don't think this atmosphere would appeal to you as you sound like a more mature student. Mind you, there are also many gorgeous single family homes near the university, but you'd probably be better off finding accommodation at least one km. away from the university.

    North Dunedin and Opoho, on the other side of the Botanic Garden, are also popular with students, affordable, and much quieter. It has a village-like atmosphere and parts of it are almost rural, yet still within a few minutes drive from the city. This area is also well-served by buses. Attractions in this neighborhood include Signal Hill (views and mountain bike tracks), Baldwin St. (steepest street), and the Botanic Garden. if you enjoy bicycling, it would be easy to cycle from this area to the university.

    Students make up 20 percent of the population, and the university is the city's leading employer. This makes for an interesting cosmopolitan population, with people from around the world who have come here to study, teach, or work in unrelated fields, or to start businesses. As a U.S. expat, I feel quite at home here.

    There is also plenty of affordable accommodation in the hills above the city center. The attraction of this area is you'd be in the heart of the city and could walk to shops, cafes, supermarkets, bus stops, cinemas, and probably even walk to the university. Views of the harbor, ocean and surrounding hills can be had. Another up and coming area is the warehouse district, which is near the city center and industrial waterfront.

    The Dunedin city center is compact and walkable. The city is very hilly, like Wellington, only colder and not nearly as glamorous.

    I live in a nice quiet neighborhood in the hills above St. Clair beach. From my apartment. I can see the harbor, the ocean, the Otago Peninsula and the surrounding mountains. It takes me 10 minutes to walk down to the beach, which is popular with surfers, dogwalkers, and people enjoying its few cafes and restaurants. The St. Clair Beach open-air saltwater pool is open from October through March. It takes me 4 minutes to drive to the Tunnel Beach Track, 10-15 minutes to drive into the university, 10 minutes to drive to the start of the Otago Peninsula (walking tracks, wildlife). Monday through Friday from about 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., the St. Clair-Normanby bus runs every 15 minutes from St. Clair to the Octagon/the Botanic Gardens/close to the university. The ride only takes 15 minutes to get to the university (you'd need to walk 2 blocks). Cycling is popular in Dunedin, and many people cycle to the university from my neighborhood.

    Don't consider moving to Dunedin, unless you can tolerate the cold! Though I moved here from sunny California, I don't mind the cold. I've gotten used to it, in fact, I prefer the cold to unbearable heat.

    Dunedin is also close to many other beautiful areas, such as Central Otago (hours away), the beautiful Catlins (90 minutes away), North Otago. We've even driven to Lake Tekapo and back in a day (something I wouldn't recommend, but we did this on the spur of the moment).

  8. #8
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    Default If you move here

    Make sure you find accommodation with good insulation and a heat pump.

    If you expect to be flying to the North Island or Australia often, flights are more expensive and less frequent from Dunedin as compared to Christchurch.

    Quote Originally Posted by PassarinhoAzul View Post
    Don't know if you are still checking replies. I just saw your question now. If you relocate to Dunedin, it would probably be best to avoid the flat areas of South Dunedin as these were affected by flooding recently. It sounds like you'd be studying at the University of Otago, in which case you might want to find an apartment or flat near the university. The areas directly adjacent to the university are full of student flats that are full of notoriously hard-partying students (unsightly piles of beer bottles and old furniture in front of student flats, shoes dangling from power lines, couch-burning). I don't think this atmosphere would appeal to you as you sound like a more mature student. Mind you, there are also many gorgeous single family homes near the university, but you'd probably be better off finding accommodation at least one km. away from the university.

    North Dunedin and Opoho, on the other side of the Botanic Garden, are also popular with students, affordable, and much quieter. It has a village-like atmosphere and parts of it are almost rural, yet still within a few minutes drive from the city. This area is also well-served by buses. Attractions in this neighborhood include Signal Hill (views and mountain bike tracks), Baldwin St. (steepest street), and the Botanic Garden. if you enjoy bicycling, it would be easy to cycle from this area to the university.

    Students make up 20 percent of the population, and the university is the city's leading employer. This makes for an interesting cosmopolitan population, with people from around the world who have come here to study, teach, or work in unrelated fields, or to start businesses. As a U.S. expat, I feel quite at home here.

    There is also plenty of affordable accommodation in the hills above the city center. The attraction of this area is you'd be in the heart of the city and could walk to shops, cafes, supermarkets, bus stops, cinemas, and probably even walk to the university. Views of the harbor, ocean and surrounding hills can be had. Another up and coming area is the warehouse district, which is near the city center and industrial waterfront.

    The Dunedin city center is compact and walkable. The city is very hilly, like Wellington, only colder and not nearly as glamorous.

    I live in a nice quiet neighborhood in the hills above St. Clair beach. From my apartment. I can see the harbor, the ocean, the Otago Peninsula and the surrounding mountains. It takes me 10 minutes to walk down to the beach, which is popular with surfers, dogwalkers, and people enjoying its few cafes and restaurants. The St. Clair Beach open-air saltwater pool is open from October through March. It takes me 4 minutes to drive to the Tunnel Beach Track, 10-15 minutes to drive into the university, 10 minutes to drive to the start of the Otago Peninsula (walking tracks, wildlife). Monday through Friday from about 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., the St. Clair-Normanby bus runs every 15 minutes from St. Clair to the Octagon/the Botanic Gardens/close to the university. The ride only takes 15 minutes to get to the university (you'd need to walk 2 blocks). Cycling is popular in Dunedin, and many people cycle to the university from my neighborhood.

    Don't consider moving to Dunedin, unless you can tolerate the cold! Though I moved here from sunny California, I don't mind the cold. I've gotten used to it, in fact, I prefer the cold to unbearable heat.

    Dunedin is also close to many other beautiful areas, such as Central Otago (hours away), the beautiful Catlins (90 minutes away), North Otago. We've even driven to Lake Tekapo and back in a day (something I wouldn't recommend, but we did this on the spur of the moment).

  9. #9
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    Christchurch
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    How do you figure to spend your time? Christchurch is obviously much more centrally located on the South Island. Five hours to Nelson or Five hours to Wanaka. Nelson (or Blenheim, etc) is a long haul from Dunedin. Are you a skier? Porters and Mt Hutt are within an hour 20 or an hour 30 from Christchurch. You won't get that convenience from Dunedin. Not sure what the tramping options are from Dunedin but I'm guessing Christchurch is ahead there, as well. In addition to better connections to the NI and to Australia, Christchurch also has daily direct flights to Singapore. I have absolutely nothing against Dunedin but, simply because of the city's location, it wouldn't work for us.

  10. #10
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    QUOTE=Super_BQ;519434]If you value your investment, I wouldn't consider Dunedin at all. Like Australia and most parts of the world, you basically can't go wrong buying real estate in desirable locations IN MAJOR cities. Long term you will have more wealth because of the multiplication factor on the value of the house. For eg. my cousin in Dunedin 15 years buys a house for $70K, today it's only worth $150K. Same age house in Christchurch bought for $120K is now worth at least $400K (the earthquake insurance $ flowing into Christchurch has boosted house prices everywhere).

    It sounds like your cousin has an undesirable house or is not telling you the value, I purchased a house in late 2003 for $90k and it is now worth $310, middle of the road area, would be far more reflective of the market than your cousin.

    If you're elderly, I strongly suggest again living in Christchurch because of the level of care and availability of specialists. You simply can't put a $ figure on health care access. Yes sure Dunedin looks nice but when you have a heart attack (where you survival is measured in seconds), having the appropriate medical resources is paramount.[/QUOTE]

    Dunedin Hospital is a centre of Cardiothoracic surgery for the South Island so should you have misfortune of a heart attack you will have resources treat you

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