8 April 2022
The charming nature of Hamilton East
From its classic state houses to its riverside paths, open green spaces to its Historic Places Trust listings, Hamilton East has long been a sought-after destination for property buyers. The suburb’s established tree-lined streets and its many renovated character homes are just part of the neighbourhood’s charm. The suburb is also walking and cycling distance to town, boasts some of the city’s most desirable eateries and coffee shops, and is in zone for popular primary and secondary schools.
But Hamilton East’s landscape is changing. Zoned high density residential, single storey homes on 600sqm sections are being replaced by multiple two-storied dwellings, while apartment living is on the horizon with the development of Hills Village.
Further changes are expected with Hamilton East and neighbouring Claudelands, being signalled as growth neighbourhoods, allowing six-storey builds.
Are such developments changing Hamilton East for better… or for worse?
Changing property market
Lugtons residential consultant, Cassie Emmett grew up on Brookfield Street and remembers walking to school past the old hitching post for horses on the corner of Grey and Clyde Streets. These days, she’s selling property in her former neighbourhood and says the suburb remains as dynamic as ever.
“Hamilton East has some amazing old character homes which are really sought after. Some have been fully renovated and are absolutely stunning; others still need doing up, so make for a good project for someone who has both the time and energy,” she says.
“It’s location also makes it desirable for a range of buyers. Zoned for Hamilton Boys High School and Hillcrest High School, it’s an attractive neighbourhood for families with children, but because of its proximity to the city, it’s also popular for professional couples who want to walk or cycle to work. It’s just across the river.”
Cassie acknowledges that parts of Hamilton East are taking on a slightly different feel with two-to-three bed units and new build townhouses appearing amongst the suburb’s character homes. “We do need the housing, and these developments are offering buyers an alternative. For some, it’s the opportunity to downsize to a low maintenance property yet still enjoy the village feel that Hamilton East offers.”
Village in the heart of the city
That village feel is encompassed by some of Hamilton’s most well-known eateries: Hayes Common, Two Birds, Winner Winner and Babaganush just to name a few. Then there are the coffee establishments, such as Grey Street Kitchen, Coffee Since Yesterday and Mavis & Co, that ensure Hamilton East’s working fraternity has caffeine to hand.
“There are lots of independent businesses in Hamilton East which contribute to the village feel and attract so many people both within the neighbourhood and beyond who want to support local,” adds Cassie.
Lovegrove Lane provides exactly the type of experience Cassie describes and with further independent stores such as Books4Kids and Collins Family Footwear ‘in the hood’, alongside charity shops, bakeries (Volare anyone?) and Cook Street Social, Hamilton East caters for week day, work day and weekend shopping and sustenance all in one.
East side property
Given its charm, location and history – what can buyers and sellers expect in the Hamilton East property market?
Recent listings indicate a three-bed home on Wellington Street will sell for over $830,000, while a three-bed, one-bath, two-car character home on Te Aroha Street will fetch above $860,000. A four-bed, one-car, 1916 heritage villa on Grey Street recently sold for $970,000; while a three-bed, one-car Hayes Paddock cottage sold for $885,000.
“Hamilton East properties certainly hold their value,” says Cassie. “Most buyers are purchasing to live in the neighbourhood, but should you purchase as a rental, it would likely be very highly sought after by those who may not be in a position to buy, but who want to be in those school zones.”
Another popular pocket of Hamilton East is the well-established Te Aroha Street, and surrounding neighbourhood of Bond, Argyle and Whyte Streets. “That’s another lovely spot, in school zones and close to the CBD,” she says.
It certainly seems Hamilton’s oldest suburb can indeed hold onto its charm.
Looking to buy or sell in Hamilton East? Contact Lugtons residential consultants today.