Relocating To Dunedin
Wednesday, January 15th, 2020Read about 'Relocating To Dunedin' on USAVE, the place for all things car rental.
Thinking of moving to Dunedin and want to find out more about living in New Zealand’s oldest city? Read on for our local insight, housing options, schools, tips and helpful information on relocating to Dunedin.
Why Move To Dunedin?
Nestled at the head of the Otago Harbour, Dunedin is a city of contrasts – on one hand its extensive Victorian/Edwardian architecture and stunning resident wildlife uniquely provides its quaint other-worldly feel, and on the other – a thriving local student culture injects youthful exuberance into daily city life.
Dunedin is packed full of beautiful gardens and parks, secluded beaches and rolling hills, a wide range of sports and leisure facilities, a plus easy access to mountains, rivers, and national parks. A thriving arts scene, excellent nightlife, plus an abundance of cafes, restaurants, bars and boutiques offer plenty to keep everyone entertained.
Living In Dunedin
Dunedin is the South Island’s second largest city, with a population of around 130,000 (around 3% of the total population of NZ). Dunedin is the gateway to the Otago region, providing easy access to this immensely popular destination renowned for outdoor activities and adventure sports.
Dunedin is home to a student population of over 35,000, and is dominated by tertiary institutions, including New Zealand’s first University. Dunedin is an exciting and vibrant city, set against a backdrop of heritage and history. Dunedin is popular with people seeking a metropolitan lifestyle but without the drawbacks of overcrowding, crime and high living costs.
Dunedin’s location in the lower South Island makes it an excellent gateway to access some of New Zealand’s best scenic highlights in NZ such as the Milford Sound, Fiordland National Park, Central Otago, Invercargill and Stewart Island. Not surprisingly, Dunedin is also a favourite Cruise Ship Port destination for many travellers wishing to experience the best of the lower South Island.
Easy commuting distances, scenic beaches, and outdoor activities such as mountain biking, hiking and a number of water sports are just some of the instant draw cards to Dunedin along with an increasingly diverse calendar of cultural and sporting events.
Top 3 Dunedin Demographics
Take a look below for the current population of Dunedin, its median age and ethnicity demographics.
- Population. The current population numbers for Dunedin sit at approximately 130,000 people.
- Age. According to Stats NZ the median age for Dunedin is 36.7 years, compared with 38 years for New Zealand as a whole.
- Ethnicity. Around 88.3 percent of the Dunedin population identify themselves as being European compared to 74 percent nationwide.6.2 percent of the population identify themselves as Asian, 2.5 percent as Pacific peoples and 7.7 percent as Maori compared with 14.9 percent nationwide. Most migrants in Dunedin originate from England.
Temperatures in Dunedin tend to be slightly cooler than more northern areas of New Zealand with averages sitting around 10 to 18 degrees in summer and between 3 and 12 degrees in the winter months.
Snowfall is likely during the winter months; however, this is usually more centred within the surrounding hills. Frosty winter mornings are common along with relatively low rainfall.
House Prices In Dunedin
Whether you choose to reside in the central city or in the surrounding suburbs, Dunedin has a wide range of housing options. Choose from those such as smaller one or two bedroom homes through to larger 3 or 4 bedroom family style homes. And while the misconception may be that all of the properties are old in Dunedin – this is simply not the case. You will find a great mix of older style houses, seventies style and more modern, recently built homes.
The cost of living in Dunedin is generally considered lower than many other New Zealand cities, with the cost of housing usually sitting just below the national average.The cost of renting a three bedroom house in Dunedin is around $350-$400 per week depending on the suburb compared to the New Zealand median which is $450 per week. There are a large number of flat/rent-a-room style apartment living rental options in Dunedin due to the resident student population. For more expansive homes expect to pay around $500 to $600 per week.
House prices in Otago and Dunedin are currently on the rise having risen over 18 percent in the last twelve months, however the number of sales are down. Average house prices in Dunedin are currently reported at around $514,680 in the Otago region.
The centre of Dunedin is known as The Octagon, the central city fans out from this focal point soon becoming the waters of the Otago Harbour to the East. North Dunedin lays northward along with Maori Hill, North East Valley, Woodhaugh, Liberton, Dalmore and Glenleith.
Inner western suburbs include Maryhill, Mornington, Kaikorai Valley, Belleknowes, Roslyn, Kaikorai and Wakari. While to the south of the Octagon you will find Kensington, The Glen, Forbury, Caversham and South Dunedin.
Outlying suburbs include Deborah Bay, Careys Bay, Port Chalmers, Roseneath, Broad Bay, Burnside, Green Island, Waldronville, Brighton, Fairfield, Mosgiel, Abbotsford and other such as Waitati, Karitane, Seacliff, Long Beach, Aramoana and Middlemarch and Hyde.
Working In Dunedin
Dunedin has a strong eco-tourism base sector, along with a large Port traffic trade, engineering and software engineering sectors. Fashion, music and art also work to make up the industry breakdown. Due to its compact size, Dunedin has some of the lowest transport costs in the country, and many people enjoy an average 10 minute commute to school and work.
Employment levels are on par with the rest of NZ with the unemployment rate sitting at 7.5 percent, compared with 7.1 percent for all New Zealand. (Stats NZ Census 2013 Data).
Schools In Dunedin
There are currently over 60 primary and intermediate schools in Dunedin, including a mixture of state and state integrated. There is also one private Christian primary school located in Mosgiel.
There are 13 secondary schools in Dunedin, four of which are state integrated. These schools are a mixture of single sex and co-ed. Dunedin is home to the oldest secondary school in NZ – Otago Boys’ High School, founded in 1863.
Tertiary education options include the University of Otago and Otago Polytechnic. There are also several vocational training institutions on offer. See here for more information on schools in Dunedin.
Wondering what there is to see and do in the area? We have put together this quick-fire list of the 6 best things to do in Dunedin to get you started. Or see here for more places to visit in Dunedin.
- Baldwin Street. Check out the second steepest street in the world!
- Larnach Castle. Visit New Zealand’s only castle for dramatic architecture and panoramic views of Dunedin.
- Orokonui Ecosanctuary. Experience a natural encounter with rare New Zealand wildlife in the only forest in the South Island protected from introduced predators and pests.
- Otago Peninsula. The home of rare marine life including Yellow-eyed Penguins, New Zealand Fur Seals, Hooker’s Sea Lions, and the world’s only mainland breeding colony of Royal Albatross.
- Otago Museum. Head to Dunedin’s most visited attraction and immerse yourself in history and culture with their extensive collection of treasures and artefacts from all over the world.
- Tunnel Beach. Explore dramatic cliffs and sea-carved pillars, arches and caves at this stunning secluded beach.
Need transport for your move to Dunedin? USAVE Car Rentals have a great range of affordable car, truck and van hire for all your moving needs. Or check out our New Zealand relocation advice and tips for moving home here.