1-Bed v.s. 2-Bed v.s. 3-Bed Properties ... Which Go Up In Value The Fastest?

This article breaks down the data to see which type of properties increase in value the fastest.


Ed McKnight

Economist, property investor and host of the Property Academy Podcast

“How does the number of bedrooms impact a property’s capital gain?”

A question property investors often ask is: “how does the number of bedrooms impact a property’s capital gain?”

Said another way, “if I buy a 3 bedroom property, will it go up in value faster than a 2, 1 or 4 bedroom property?”

Data provider, CoreLogic, recently released the data to us to determine whether this has been the case over the last 20 years.

This includes an analysis of properties in Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington and Hamilton, and comparing how the value of properties have changed both based on the number of bedrooms and the type of property.

About The Data

How the data was calculated

The properties have then been electronically valued to calculate the median value of properties in January 2000 and then again today.

It’s important to note that any properties that have newly build over the last 20 years have been excluded from the analysis.

This protects against the risk that larger or high-spec homes built in recent years skew property values higher.


2-Bedroom apartments go up in value faster than 1, 3 or 4 bedroom apartments

The data shows that in some cases, the number of bedrooms has had a consistent impact on the growth experienced by properties in our four sample cities.

For instance, in Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington, the median value of 2-bedroom apartments increased 30.1 – 37.5% faster than the price of a 1-bedroom apartment.

In each of these three cities, 2 bedroom apartments had the highest capital growth rates compared to 1, 3 and 4 bedroom apartments.

That suggests that historically, on average 2-bedroom apartments have made a better long-term investment than apartments with another number of bedrooms.

In each of these three cities, 2 bedroom apartments had the highest capital growth rates compared to 1, 3 and 4 bedroom apartments.

That suggests that historically, on average 2-bedroom apartments have made a better long-term investment than apartments with another number of bedrooms.

Houses and Townhouses

2-bed flats are preferrable to 1-bed flats. But after that, there's no consistent trend

But, in other cases, the data is less consistent.

4-bedroom flats increased the fastest in Auckland, whereas in Wellington it was 1-bedroom flats, 3-bedroom flats in Christchurch and 2-bed flats in Hamilton that appreciated most quickly.

Nonetheless, we can still spot trends.

2 bedroom flats in Auckland and Hamilton appreciated significantly faster than 1-bed units in the same cities, 31.3% and 52.8% faster respectively.

And while 1 bedroom flats grew faster in Christchurch and Wellington, they did so at a much slower rate, just 9.2% and 1.5% respectively.

While this is a weaker trend, if I were considering two properties – the same in all respects, except one has 2 bedrooms and the other had 1 – I’d be more comfortable investing in the 2-bed property.

It’s important to note that while small differences in growth rates can seem minute, they can also have a significant impact.

Take the 1-bedroom Auckland flats mentioned above. Since January 2000 these properties grew in value on average by 4.85% annually.

On the other hand, the median-priced 2-bed flat grew in value by 6.37% on average each year.

Had a property-purchaser of a 1-bed flat invested the same amount of money in the average 2-bed unit, they would be more than $205,000 wealthier today.

Limitations to this data set

Take this article with a grain of salt

But before you start looking at properties with only a specific number of bedrooms, there are some limitations to this data.

We can’t use the number of bedrooms as an indicator for future capital growth in stand-alone houses because there is no discernible trend.

In these cases, an investor looking for long term capital gains is better looking for other factors: durability, location and the property’s relative price.

Similarly, we can’t tell from this data whether the increase in value is caused by the additional bedroom alone.

For instance, did 2-bed apartments increase in value faster than 1-bed apartments because of the additional bedroom, or was it because we can assume 2-bedroom apartments are larger than 1-bedroom apartments?

Having said that, in the cases of apartments, flats and townhouses, it does appear that 2 bedrooms are better than 1. In other cases, the number of bedrooms doesn’t seem to matter much at all.

Who are Opes Partners?
Opes Partners

What is the 3-Step Opes Coaching Programme?

1. Plan out your property investment portfolio

The first step in the programme is to co-create a plan using our MyWealth Plan software. We built this software specifically to help Kiwis create a financial plan in under an hour.

You'll leave this 1-hour session with a written down plan. Pen to paper.

2. Pick properties that fit with your plan

Once you've created your plan in step #1 – your property partner will go out and find properties that fit your plan. They'll search through projects from up to 58 developers to find the best ones for you.

When you meet again, you'll review the top picks, go through the analysis, crunch the numbers together, and then decide which ones to hold with the developer.

3. Dig into the details – Confirm it's the right property for you

Once you've selected a property, you'll work for 10 days to make sure it's the right property for you. So you'll work with your Property Partner and Client Relationship Manager to dig into the details of the property.

You'll go and look at the development and be introduced to mortgage brokers, solicitors, accountants, and property managers. Their sole job is to help you figure out if this property works for you.

And you’ll have access to all the resources, tools, and data … so when confirmation day comes, you have confidence you know you’re making the right decision.

Who is the Opes Coaching Programme the right fit for?

  • You understand the concept of property investment, but who wants help putting it into practice.
  • You want a “Done for you” property investment service, so you can be a hands-off investor.
  • You are someone who has at least a 10 year investment time horizon.
  • And finally, you’re ready to become a property investor.

Who is the Opes Coaching Programme is NOT the right fit for?

  • You’re more into the smell of paint or the colour of a wall than the numbers that stand behind an investment property.
  • You only want investments that are hands-on, so you can save a few dollars here and there.
  • You have plenty of time on your hands and want to do the property investment process yourselves.
  • You’re looking for an overnight success and want to get rich quickly.

What does it cost to work with Opes Partners and go through the programme?

It’s free. Complimentary. No Cost.


The developer pays us a marketing fee when you confirm that the property is the right fit for you. Very similar to the way a mortgage broker gets paid by the bank.

Now it's important to note that we are paid the same fixed rate no matter what property you invest in.

If it’s a $500k apartment in Christchurch or a $1.3 mil 3-bedroom townhouse in Ponsonby – we get paid the same rate.

That's important because then we can recommend the right property for you, and there's no incentive to recommend you invest in a more expensive property, just so we get paid more.

I want learn more about how Opes can help me

Learn more about the Opes Coaching Programme Here


Ed McKnight

Ed McKnight is the host of the Property Academy Podcast – NZ's #1 business podcast. He is an economist, having studied at the University of Auckland and the University of Waikato. He's a frequent writer for Informed Investor Magazine and has contributed to NewsHub, Stuff, OneRoof and Property Investor Magazine.