It’s not all about the money

It’s not all about the money

Apparently, it’s not all about the money. Statistics New Zealand’s latest media release says good health, relationships, housing and enough money strongly influence Kiwis’ satisfaction with their lives overall.

In 2012, one-fifth of New Zealanders said they had good health, enough money, good housing, and didn’t feel lonely. Nearly all those people (98%) were satisfied or very satisfied with their lives overall.

On the other hand, 1 in 20 (just over 5%) New Zealanders said they had neither good health, nor enough money, nor good housing, and said they had felt lonely in the past four weeks. Yet just over half (55%) of these people were satisfied or very satisfied with their lives overall.

These findings come from the New Zealand General Social Survey (NZGSS) 2012, for which Statistics New Zealand interviewed 8,500 people over the 12 months from April 2012.

“Most New Zealanders appear to be content with their lives, with 87% of the population reporting they were satisfied or very satisfied with their lives overall. This is above the OECD average, and similar to Australia, the United States, and Canada,” says NZGSS manager Philip Walker.

Survey results also show that New Zealanders are better prepared for emergencies than they used to be, with 52% now having emergency water in their household for three days, compared to 40% in 2008.

“The increase in the Canterbury and Wellington regions is even starker, with Canterbury increasing from 34 percent to 69 percent and Wellington from 51 percent to 68 percent,” explains Walker..

The NZGSS provides official statistics on social well-being that extend beyond traditional economic measures such as GDP. The survey aligns with the OECD well-being framework, so we can see how New Zealanders fare compared with other countries and over time.