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Adding Value In Auckland

Smart thinking and some unexpected budget boosts have enabled an investor to nearly triple the weekly rental for his homes.

By: Property Investor Team

1 July 2020

A little-known Auckland Council bylaw has helped investor Ryan Weir renovate, and add significant value to one of his rental properties.

The home in Clover Park is located in an area that experiences noise from planes as they take off and land at Auckland Airport. The Moderate Aircraft Noise Area (MANA) provisions in Auckland’s Unitary Plan mean that people who own homes in these areas are able to get funding to mitigate the effects of this noise.

‘I was able to get 75% of a new heat pump, a ventilation system and a rangehood funded’ RYAN WEIR

“It was great, because I was able to get 75% off a new heat pump, a ventilation system and a rangehood funded for the renovation,” says Weir.

“It’s so people who are loath to open their windows because of aircraft noise don’t end up with damp, unhealthy homes.”

The modest fibre cement home in Manukau was purchased by Weir in 2012. The three-beddy on a 660m2 section featured a Skyline garage and was in a sorry state. Tiles were missing from the kitchen floor, the kitchen bench was mouldy, doors didn’t close, and the bath was filthy.

“There was a massive family living there and the whole place was getting really run down,”
explains Weir. He purchased the property for just $312,800 in 2012, but in 2018 he decided it was time to take action and renovate. He realised that the property had potential for a second dwelling located where the Skyline garage was sited, so he gave the tenants notice and started the process.

“We worked on both the renovation of the existing dwelling and the new dwelling at the same time using trusted tradies that I use regularly”
says Weir.

Consents were needed for the new dwelling, but Weir says that this process was smooth and seamless. Once these were granted, the existing garage was demolished, with a new concrete slab poured.

Weir was committed to making an attractive second dwelling, but he was also aware of budget. Colorsteel is being increasingly used as a cladding material, and it’s cost effective, so Weir decided to make use of this. The white Colorsteel contrasted nicely with the black aluminium joinery used for the windows: the effect is contemporary and clean.

Inside, the walls were painted a practical white, with a dark, heavy duty carpet laid down. The two-bedroom property also features a new kitchen from Cabjaks, with the bathroom featuring a glass shower, toilet and white vanity.

Weir managed to cut costs significantly on this build by choosing to install a check metre rather than getting Watercare to install new mains water.

“The charge is $12,000 for Watercare to install a new mains: so it is far more sensible to have a check metre instead,”
says Weir.

This is connected to the water mains of the existing house, but each month’s water bill can be calculated individually, with tenants charged accordingly.

A Quick Makeover On Budget

The main house needed an extreme makeover, but fortunately there was no structural work involved. The entire interior was repainted, with new carpet and vinyl put in as well. The bathroom, which had been very run down, was replaced with a new bath over shower and a new vanity and toilet were also installed.

The total cost for this part of the project was around $30,000, which Weir says was in line with his budget. Weir is a property manager and co-owner of franchise system Propertyscouts and has a group of trusted tradies he uses in this capacity.

He drew from their skills for this build and renovation project as well, and he’s been pleased with the results.

The final cost for both the dwellings ended up being $236,000. The value of the home and income is currently around $720,000, but the rental yields are even more impressive.

“I used to get $375 for the main dwelling. Now the new two-bedroom dwelling brings in $490 a week; and the renovated three-bedroom home is making $535.”

With a six per cent yield on market value, Weir has managed to achieve the rare feat of adding significant value in Auckland’s cut-throat market. ■


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