'Buying NZ Property – Download the free sample readings!

NZ presents some of the most alluring property in the Western World; particularly given the greater easy of residency, the low cost of property, and the liveability of the country. In addition, there is no capital gains tax, transfer taxes, VAT/GST or wealth taxes in NZ, so rest assured that NZ property is tax-effective! Learn more now!

New Zealand Property Report 2010 - Download the table of contents or buy this 180-page report at our online store for just $US19.95.


Friday, January 1, 2010

Negatives aspects about living in NZ

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There are many positive aspects to living in NZ. In this article I want to explore some of the negatives.
1. Climate: NZ is cold and windy. If its not cold because there is an absence of sunshine, its cold because its really windy here. The reason that this country has a lot of wind farms (despite no subsidies for them) is because its mostly windy. More problematic is that its more windy in summer when you would expect to be out in the sun. I went for a walk yesterday. It was a sunny day, but I got 'brain freeze' because I forgot my hat. This of course does not preclude having a good time, it just places obstacles in the way. Consider this: The window of opportunity to go to the beach without cold winds is narrow. You can however use a wetsuit. If you enjoy canoeing there will be no shortage of water because it rains a lot. Mind you the rains are not excessive so fear not.
If you don't mind being well-insulated indoors and outdoors, then living in NZ is fine. A lot of houses are still uninsulated so beware when buying a house.
2. Lifestyle: NZ is divided between city and country. Rural towns are more lifestyle orientated, but I would say that is generally true of all NZ. This trend is by default because all the aspirational people tend to shift overseas - whether Australia, the USA, the UK or Japan. It leaves few jobs and little domestic demand growth to forge a business. At least compared to other countries.
3. Productivity: Working in an air conditioned office is the same experience in most parts of the world - at least where the systems work. In NZ, if you are working outside the office environment, you will tend to find the climate affects your productivity. I think its related mostly to the temperature and humidity. I find myself to be far more productive in the Philippines and Australia (2nd). In NZ, I am inclined to go to bed earlier and wake up later.
4. Business opportunities: NZ has little domestic demand because the population is small, the per capita income is low, productivity growth is low, most consumption is personal rather than business investment.
5. Welfarism: There is a tendency in this climate for people to depend on the government for financial support. The implication is that the lack of income places a significant burden on everyone, and business in particular. If you are living in NZ, the burden is mostly in the form of land taxes (rates of $1300-3000 per annum) are typical, compared to Japan ($300-500) and Australia ($700-1000) at the lower end of the market. The other burden is the 12% GST. These levels are not high by European standards, however if you are a retiree or a low-income earner they go direct to your bottom line.
6. Isolated: NZ is relatively isolated from the rest of the world, and also the other island. There is a significant cost moving between the two islands, with each offering substantial benefits. It would be nice if they were conjoined twins. Fortunately NZ is close to Australia and airfares between the two countries are coming down, and already offer significant savings. The positive side of this argument is that activities are convenient and access is not congested. There is little traffic.
7. Monoculture: NZ is a small place so don't expect as much culture as other countries. Mind you they are pretty good despite their small population. Even small towns of 40,000 people seem to manage their share of museums, restaurants, art galleries, cafes, historic sites, Maori preservation sites, etc. When I first came here in 1993 it was simply a farming community. Today the major cities and even some of the larger towns offer far more interesting cultural experiences.

I find the climate particularly limiting though if you don't mind going to the beach with a wetsuit or 3 layers of clothes in summer, no problem. Winter is actually not so bad because the winds are milder. The climatic factor is less of a problem in the north. I would reflect on the average wind speed charts offered in our 2010 report - out soon and available complimentary to those who buy the 2009 edition.

Some of you will wonder what I am complaining about given that you are coming from more extreme climatic conditions in the USA, UK or Europe. Enough said. Much depends on your values, personal circumstances and constraints.

'Buying NZ Property – Download the free sample readings!

NZ presents some of the most alluring property in the Western World; particularly given the greater easy of residency, the low cost of property, and the liveability of the country. In addition, there is no capital gains tax, transfer taxes, VAT/GST or wealth taxes in NZ, so rest assured that NZ property is tax-effective! Learn more now!

New Zealand Property Report 2010 - Download the table of contents or buy this 180-page report at our online store for just $US19.95.


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