REINZ news release

Sales volumes see seasonal drop in January as Auckland & national median house prices rise year-on-year.

  • 28 February, 2017
  • REINZ, Real Estate Institute of New Zealand

Aucklanders are once again starting to put their houses on the market, according to the latest figures released in February by Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ).

After months of record low numbers of houses available for sale across Auckland, the number of properties for sale in the region jumped by 1,135 (17%) compared to January 2016. This contrasts with declining numbers of properties for sale nationwide, with 3,743 fewer houses for sale in January compared to 12 months ago.

Excluding Auckland, the number of properties for sale has fallen by 4,878 (-22%) over the past 12 months. At the same time, median house prices have risen a seasonally adjusted 9.4% across New Zealand year-on-year to $490,000, firming slightly (+0.2%) and in line for this time of year. Two of 12 regions in New Zealand hit new record high median sale prices in January 2017 - Hawke’s Bay up 16% to $366,000, and Nelson/Marlborough up 25% to $470,000. The number of sales for January 2017 was 4,307, down 6% on a seasonally adjusted basis compared to December 2016.

REINZ CEO Bindi Norwell says: “On a seasonally adjusted basis, which is always the most reliable guide, the real estate market saw prices steady and volumes down 6 percent in January. “Anecdotal evidence from agents around the country suggests that the market has been picking up speed again towards the end of January.

The number of properties for sale in Auckland is certainly rising, with more than four months of supply now available and a rise of more than a month of supply over the past year. This lead indicator means greater choice for Auckland home buyers, and prompts us to ask whether the Auckland market is showing some early new signs of activity.

“Market fundamentals remain the same, with a rising population, housing shortage and historically low, although potentially rising, interest rates. We await the March data with interest, as a clearer picture will emerge of where the market is likely to head through 2017.”

LJ Hooker NZ

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