Auckland property market gets boost after three cooler months

The average sales price of a property in Auckland, New Zealand increased by 1.9% in September to $836,275, the latest published data shows.

The median sales price reached $790,000, a rise of 4.6%, the data from real estate firm Barfoot & Thompson also shows with the firm also reporting an extremely active month with sales up 3.4% month on month and up 41.6% compared to a year ago.

Peter Thompson, managing director of Barfoot & Thompson, said that nearly a third of all homes sold were for in excess of $1 million, which is the highest number of $1 million plus homes ever sold in a month.

‘You have to go back to June this year to see a similar lift in values in one month to that we experienced in September. In part the price surge may be down to buyers getting in ahead of the new regulations around equity ratios for investors, which came into force in October, but without doubt an element of the traditional lift that comes with spring was there,’ he explained.

Some 11.9% of all homes sold were properties for under $500,000. This is significantly lower than the 14.3% of sales in August in this sector or the 31.8% recorded in September last year.

New listings at 1,940 were the highest in a September for 12 years, and created a reasonable level of choice, he also pointed out, which has given a boost to the residential real estate market following three months of cooling.

‘Whether September’s prices have set a trend for the remainder of the year has yet to be seen,’ said Thompson who also pointed out that new regulations for international buyers are due to come into force in November and these have coincided with a tightening of requirements around the export of money out of China.

‘In the last week of the month there was a falloff in sales made under the hammer at auctions, and there was less pressure on buyers to make immediate decisions. This end of the month development carries with it a note of caution that September’s prices may not prove to be the start of a new round of increases, and that buyer’s may not be prepared to overstretch themselves to secure a property. The future direction of prices still remains at the crossroads,’ he added.