Kiwis' desire to own property waning: survey

Buyers hunting for property are normally on the 'holiday high' and have a happy attitude and...
There has been a drop in desire by Kiwis to own their own home, research has found.. Photo: Getty Images
There has been a drop in desire by people to own their own home, while at the same time the amount of money people believe they need for retirement has increased, research has found.

An annual survey of 1001 people undertaken by investment platform Sharesies has revealed how Kiwis' attitudes towards money have shifted over the last year.

This year over a quarter (27 percent) of those surveyed said they did not want to own a property, up from 12 percent last year.

Sharesies co-CEO Brooke Roberts said that was a big shift in a year and there were a few things driving it.

"One is that feeling that it is getting harder and harder to own a home, it just feels inaccessible."

The survey found 23 percent felt they would not be able to afford a house, up from 16 percent last year.

Roberts believed the change also reflected more options becoming available for Kiwis to invest into.

"In New Zealand when we started Sharesies investing equalled home ownership - that was the narrative. That is starting to change.

"With 9 percent of people using Sharesies now and investing becoming more of a thing that is accessible to people that they are starting to build their confidence in that way too."

She said people were now more open to building their wealth in other ways through shares and funds and not just property.

Sharesies now has 470,000 users with $1.9 billion invested.

The research also found people were becoming more aware of how much they would need to save for retirement.

Of those surveyed 40 percent believed they would need over a million dollars compared with 34 percent in 2020.

"People are becoming more aware that they are going to need quite a bit of money in order to retire."

Massey University research out this week found a couple looking to retire in the city would need $809,000 to have spending choices in retirement.

While KiwiSaver remained the main savings vehicle for retirement more were also seeing share investment as part of their long-term plan.

Of those surveyed 43 percent believed that investing in shares was a way to save for retirement, up from 35 percent.

Brooke Roberts, co-CEO of Sharesies. Photo: NZ Herald
Brooke Roberts, co-CEO of Sharesies. Photo: NZ Herald
Roberts said people were becoming more conscious of investing and how they could develop that wealth and have more financial freedom in the future.

"There is still a lot to be done when it comes to understanding what KiwiSaver is."

KiwiSaver funds invest in a range of assets including shares, bonds, property and cash.

Covid impact

Around half of those surveyed felt comfortable with their savings and current money situation but when asked about the direct link between financial situation and the pandemic, only 46 percent of Aucklanders felt comfortable. That compared to 55 percent of people living in Wellington.

The research also surveyed 685 Sharesies investors. Of the general population surveyed, 46 percent said they never checked on the share markets while 77 percent of Sharesies investors claimed to check the markets weekly.

Nearly a third of Sharesies investors survey had also become more aggressive with their investment strategies since the pandemic began compared with 9 percent of the general population surveyed.

Sharesies investors were also looking to make the most of any extra cash and invest more in the share markets (63 percent), while those surveyed from the general population would rather put their money into an emergency fund (34 percent), pay off their debts (31 percent) or travel domestically (27 percent).

Asked if they were more or less likely to invest in NZX-listed companies due to the pandemic, 26 percent said they were more likely to while 14 percent said they were less likely to.

Unsurprisingly, more Kiwis have been investing into healthcare, technology and energy shares while one in five had either stopped or were investing less into tourism and travel-related stocks.

Men were still more confident than women when it comes to investments, with 55 percent of males surveyed saying they were knowledgeable about the sharemarket compared with 23 percent of females.

Younger people are also becoming more investment savvy -- 47 percent of those under 30 said they were knowledgeable compared with 36 percent of those 35 and over.

Māori and Pasifika people were also less like to own shares and understand how investing works.

Only one-third of Māori and a quarter of Pasifika agreed that they understand how investing works, compared with 41 percent of Pākehā.

Pasifika people were among the most uncomfortable with their financial situation as a result of the pandemic (26 percent), followed by Māori (19 percent) and Pākehā (15 percent).

Four in five Pākehā feel that they are in control of their spending, whereas Māori (67 percent) and Pasifika (57 percent) are least likely to agree.

Māori and Pasifika were also least likely to be happy with their financial situations (40 percent and 38 percent respectively), compared to more than half (54 percent) of other ethnicities who are happy.

Add a Comment

Our journalists are your neighbours

We are the South's eyes and ears in crucial council meetings, at court hearings, on the sidelines of sporting events and on the frontline of breaking news.

As our region faces uncharted waters in the wake of a global pandemic, Otago Daily Times continues to bring you local stories that matter.

We employ local journalists and photographers to tell your stories, as other outlets cut local coverage in favour of stories told out of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

You can help us continue to bring you local news you can trust by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter