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New Zealand: Rising rates hit Ōpōtiki orchardists hardest

Owners of high value kiwifruit orchards in the eastern Bay of Plenty will be the biggest rates losers in the coming year, forking out an extra $10,000. While the average annual rate rise in the Ōpōtiki district is forecast to be 4.25 per cent – down from the 5.06 per cent originally signalled – the actual increase varies significantly depending on location and property type.

The big winners are the owners of coastal properties at Te Kaha who can expect an average decrease of 13 per cent and rural residential property owners whose rates will drop 8 percent.

Kiwifruit orchardists with properties valued at more than $9.3 million are the biggest losers with their rates due to rise 55 per cent, increasing from $20,000 a year to $31,000.

The properties most affected by the combined increase in rateable value and the council’s proposed rate increase are kiwifruit orchards, rural non-residential properties and higher value town properties.

Most properties in Ōpōtiki increased significantly at the last triennial valuation with residential properties increasing by an average of 34 per cent, commercial by 32 per cent and rural properties such as dairy, pastoral and horticultural by 16, 18 and 70 per cent respectively.

As reported on¸ Ōpōtiki ranked third in the North Island for year-on-year growth and had the highest growth of 11 per cent in the last quarter of 2019.

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