While the nationwide lockdown caused the housing market to come to a grinding halt, interest in Kōtuitui, a Ken Crosson designed, affordable new development in downtown Manukau was fervent.
Kōtuitui first launched in November 2019 with all available homes selling out within 6 weeks.
Of the 61 total two- and three-bedroom terrace homes, 36 were reserved for KiwiBuild buyers and became available to purchase on 11 March 2020 - just one week prior to the lockdown.
Despite increasing uncertainty in the market caused by Covid-19 and its impacts on KiwiSaver funds, the interest in Kōtuitui remained incredibly high with 582 new registrations since NZ entered Covid alert level four, 52 of which were during the lockdown.
One particularly determined purchaser signed a contract during the lockdown, and since we have moved into alert levels 3 and 2, a further 17 homes have been snapped up.
Kallam Brown, Development Manager at Avant who are behind the project says it was incredibly encouraging that first home buyers were still keen to invest in Kōtuitui despite the market uncertainty.
“The exceptional quality of the homes at an affordable price point is what drove the demand from first home buyers and second chance buyers.
“The project is designed by one of New Zealand’s leading architects, Ken Crosson, whose firm Crosson Architects recently picked up the 2019 Home of The Year award for some of their work.
“A brand-new home designed by one of New Zealand’s most revered architects is an almost unimaginable win for first home buyers, who usually have to compromise in some aspect of their dream home hunt.
“While the focus of much of the affordable stock has been on efficiency, Crosson believes that everyone is entitled to quality housing, which drew him to designing these homes.
“The prominent roof design allows internal space to be maximised and provides a distinct differentiation between the homes.
“Timeless materials such as brick cladding have been purposefully selected for low-maintenance, sustainability that will stand the test of time.”
Brown says the location is another exceptional “win” for Kōtuitui buyers.
“Located just 500m from Manukau’s emerging city centre, Kōtuitui is connected to transport, shopping, diverse entertainment, recreation and education facilities.
“When we look around the world, it is the areas that are connected to such amenity that achieve sustained growth.”
“The Government’s investment in the area through the Transform Manukau project by Panuku means it’s only set to improve.”
The speedy construction of Kōtuitui in extremely challenging times for the industry has been another noteworthy achievement for the project.
Despite construction losing five weeks during the lockdown, the overall delivery of the project has been brought ahead of schedule and is well and truly on track to complete prior to Christmas this year.
A two-bedroom home at Kotuitui starts from just $590,000 and includes a full whiteware package, car parking and landscaping.
Colliers’ Project Sales Consultant Karishma Singh says that having all the “extras” included in the purchase price is particularly attractive.
“Buyers usually stretch themselves financially to secure a property and then aren’t able to afford the lifestyle items that create real enjoyment of the home.
“These extra expenses are often overlooked, but at Kōtuitui the entire purchase can be financed through a home loan rather than being an additional cost at move in time, often when purchasers can least afford it.
“Being able to supply first home buyers with a washing machine, dryer, fridge, heating and landscaping within the already affordable price point in a stunning development is very satisfying.”
For those who miss out this time around, Kōtuitui is part of a larger community in the making at Barrowcliffe Place. The new neighbourhood will be home to some 120 homes when it completes in 2022.
The development is being brought to life in partnership with local Mana Whenua iwi Te Ākitai Waiohua, who gifted the name Kōtuitui, which means to connect.
Stage two of the project is coming to market later this year with more terrace housing available to the open market.