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09-07-2009

Median house sale prices edges up, volumes dip

Landlords.co.nz

New Zealand residential property prices edged higher in June, while the volume of sales dipped after two monthly gains, according to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ).

By Paul McBeth

The median price for homes across the country rose to $340,000 last month, up from $337,500 in May, the REINZ said in a statement. The length of time it took to sell a house last month dropped to 41 days from 42 in May.

The total number of properties dropped to 6,040 from 6,291 in May and up from 4,305 in June last year.

"There's still a reluctance on many people's part to put their home on the market in what they perceive as a buyer's market." REINZ president Mike Elford said.

"Shortage of stock remains the biggest issue facing the industry at the moment."

Property values have been improving and the market is showing signs of stabilising due to an increase in net migration and a shortage of new housing, according to QV Valuations data out this week. House prices fell 7.1% in the 12 months ended June 30, compared to an 8.1% decline in the period through May, according to QV.

ASB economist Jane Turner said the decline in time to sell, which seasonally adjusted dropped to 39.6 days, suggests "the balance between supply and demand is continuing to improve."

"The housing market is one area of ‘green shoots' for the NZ economy, with low interest rates now stimulating interest," she said.

Northland median house prices rose to $310,000 from $306,500 in May, according to today's REINZ report, with the number of houses sold dropping to 167 from 177.

The median house price in Auckland fell to $435,000 in June from $450,000 the previous month, with 2,032 houses sold, down from 2,114 in May. In Waikato/Bay of Plenty/Gisborne the median price rose to $318,750 from $312,000.

Hawke's Bay recorded a jump in the median price to $280,000 from $259,750. In Taranaki, prices gained to $271,000 from $261,000, with 184 houses sold, down from 197.

Manawatu/Wanganui's median price rose to $221,750 from $220,000. Wellington's median price slid to $375,000 from $380,000in April, with sales little changed at 674.

In Nelson and Marlborough, the median price rose to $334,000 from $330,250. Canterbury/Westland marked a decline in houses sold to 889 from 955, while the median price increased to $295,000 from $285,000.

In Central Otago Lakes, which includes Queenstown, sales slipped to 80 from 84 in May while the median price rose to $438,750 from $427,500.

Otago sales were 232, up from 215, with the median price little changed at $219,500 from $220,000 in the previous month. In Southland the median price jumped to $193,500 from $180,000.

Source: Landlords.co.nz

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