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Strong property market sees prices rise across most of New Zealand

The latest figures from show big jumps in what people were asking in 17 of 19 areas, and reveal that Aucklanders' average $568,778 asking price in October was up 6% compared with three months ago. chief executive Alastair Helm said that was the highest mean price sought in Auckland, up from $527,979 in August and $558,604 in September.

The national average asking price is now $434,164, topping the previous record of $429,250 set in April.

Helm explained that lack of listings had caused price expectations to jump. Sellers had become more confident and listings usually surged in October.

However the volume of new listings shows a slightly different picture with an 11% seasonally adjusted decline which indicates that there is still some hesitation within property owners to bring their property onto the market, Helm pointed out.

‘The month of October tends to see a big lift from September to satisfy the spring surge in demand; this year the increase was not so significant. This would ordinarily lead to some further tightening in the available stock of property on the market but recent sales which have not continued the year on year rises seen through the winter months have resulted in a rise in the inventory of unsold properties on the market. These inventory levels are still in the main below the long term average, but are edging up from the lows of two months ago,’ he said.

‘The next data for November will be interesting to review as to the final flush of new listings coming onto the market in Spring. November is traditionally one of the biggest listings months of the year. Last year that total was close to 13,000, that at a time when inventory was considerably higher than today,’ he added.

The long term trend has seen a steady increase in asking price over the past three years. The seasonal trend each year tends to see asking prices rise through from mid winter to October before falling back.

Only two regions are seeing prices fall. In Central/Otago Queenstown Lakes region prices fell by 11% on a comparison with the recent three months average to $498,436 and the Central North Island region saw prices fall by 3.5% to $344,669.
There were seven regions where asking prices rose above 5% on a comparable basis to the past three months, with a further eight regions with an increase of between 1% and 5%.