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02-07-2009

Record numbers of auctions

Landlords.co.nz

The shortage of real estate listings in cities around the country has seen record numbers of home owners auctioning their homes.

By Vicki Holder

In Christchurch Harcourts Grenadier ran 80 auctions in June, more than twice the average for this time of year and 10% above their previous record set in October last year.

Auction manager, Roger Dawson says it's extraordinary to have this level of auction bookings in the winter months when listings normally slow down.

"We're selling in excess of 50% under the hammer and another 20% are being sold within a week of the auction."

Figures are not being boosted by mortgagee sales, which have remained steady for 18 months.

Peter Thompson of Barfoot & Thompson says the same thing is happening right across Auckland. It's not just areas like central and the North Shore that have traditionally opted for this method. Even in South Auckland, there's been a huge increase in auction selling, he says.

"That would have been unheard of five or six years ago."

First National's general manager John Stewart agrees auction figures are up. His agencies don't push auctions, so it's more about the shortage of listings creating greater contestability. "For those who run auctions, they are being contested heavily."

And in Wellington, a region where auctions are not as popular, John Ross from The Professionals in Upper Hutt says the auctions his company is doing are "going ballistic".

"We're getting well above the reserve and prices beyond what we thought we'd get on a very good day."

People want to see quick action on their properties in these tougher economic times, says Dawson. "Auctions sell properties three to four times more quickly than normal methods."

Thompson says, "It's getting people to make decisions quicker. It's achieving better prices for vendors because we've a lot of buyers but limited stock."

He says 65-70% of properties are selling under the hammer.

Source: Landlords.co.nz

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