|Prices Flat Heading into Winter
New Zealand property values are flat
heading into winter, as stock levels rise, time on market increases, and
Auckland becomes a buyer's market for the first time in years. While the
Wellington market is still strong and certain regional markets are performing
well, Christchurch is down and national figures are cooling. According to
Quotable Value (QV), the average value of all residential dwellings throughout
the country was $677,618 in March, up 7.3 percent compared to March last year.
Dwelling price growth in Auckland was
almost flat for the year at 1 percent to $1,055,992. The North Shore was the
only part of the region to post any significant gains, with coastal properties
up 3.4 percent to $1,422,283, and overall property values up 2.9 percent. Homes
on the Gulf Islands posted the healthiest gains for the year at 8.5 percent.
Prices were up by 3.2 percent in Hamilton. 4.5 percent in Tauranga, 9.4 percent
in Dunedin, and 8.2 percent in Wellington to $644,567. In Christchurch, the
average dwelling value was down by 0.6 percent to $494,117.
The situation in Auckland has cooled
dramatically over the last 12 months, with 1 percent growth recorded between
March 2017 and 2018 compared to 12.3 percent growth the year before. Reduced
pressure has helped more first home buyers to enter the market and provided
them with more choice. According to QV Auckland senior consultant James Steele,
"First home buyers are being more active in the market and they are taking
advantage of less competition from investors and also lower deposit schemes
being offered by banks."
According to figures from Realestate.co.nz,
there were 9572 Auckland homes available for sale at the end of March, an
increase of 6 percent compared to the same time last year. With the number of
homes available for sale at a six year high, Auckland has become a buyer's
market for the first time in many years. According to Realestate.co.nz, the
average asking price for a home in Auckland dropped from its record high of
$994,175 set in February this year to $963,888 in March, which was slightly
lower than the March 2017 average of $969,532. In contrast to QV's figures,
this sees the average Auckland asking price decrease by -1.3 percent for the
While Wellington doesn't seem to be
following current national and Auckland trends, according to QV Wellington
consultant David Cornford, there are signs that values could be flattening:
"There is still plenty of activity in the Wellington market although value
growth continues to slow and it feels like we are starting to enter a period of
stable property values after a couple of years of strong growth."
According to Realestate.co.nz figures, this may already be happening, with the
average asking price in Wellington having increased by just 1.6 percent on an
annual basis. With prices falling and supply exceeding demand in many markets,
there could be renewed opportunities for buyers heading into winter, including
those who want to move up the property ladder.
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