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11-05-2011

REINZ regional commentaries - April 2011

Landlords.co.nz

The REINZ April 2011 regional commentaries

Auckland Region

The Auckland region median house price reached an all time high of $479,500 in April underlining the supply/demand dynamics that have been evident in the Auckland market for some months. Across the region prices rose 2.0% with strength being shown in Auckland City and Manukau City, while North Shore prices have eased after a strong run in February and March. Sales volumes eased back in April 2011 compared to March 2011, although in seasonally adjusted terms April's volumes were down only 0.3% compared to March 2011 and up 11.4% compared to April 2010. Volumes have continued to be strong in North Shore City and Waitakere City.

For the three months ended April 2011 the Auckland Housing Price Index has increased by 7.5% and Auckland is now only 2.1% below its July 2007 peak.

The Auckland region's days to sell at 34 days was the shortest for all regions recorded in April 2011 and is a 1 day improvement over the 35 days recorded in March 2011, and the 35 days recorded in April 2010.

Wellington

The median house price for the Wellington region fell by almost 7% in April 2011 compared to March 2011, and only down 1% compared to April 2010. The Wellington region recorded the second largest fall in prices in April 2011. Within the region prices were up noticeably in Upper Hutt and Central Wellington and weaker in Eastern Wellington and the Hutt Valley.

Volumes across the region were weaker than the national result with Central Wellington and Hutt Valley showing better volume performance than the regional and national results.

The Wellington region's median days to sell increased by 5 days to 42 days compared to 37 days in March 2011, and 3 days longer than the 39 days recorded in March 2010.

Northland

The median house price for Northland fell almost 12% in April to $292,000 and is now at its lowest point since June 2010, although the median price held steady in Whangarei City. This regional trend is against the national trend of generally increasing prices in April 2011. Volumes also eased noticeably, with April 2011 being the lowest April result for almost 20 years.

Against this weakening trend of lower prices and volumes the days to sell continued to improve with the median days to sell in April reaching 73 days, 21 days shorter than the 94 days recorded in March and the recorded 111 days in February 2011. There appears to be some nascent interest in coastal properties and agents report that some older stock is now being sold as vendors meet the market.

Waikato/Bay of Plenty/Gisborne

The median prices rose 2.6% across the Waikato/Bay of Plenty region during April compared to March 2011 but fell 0.7% compared to April 2010. Prices were up noticeably in Waikato Country, Hamilton City and Rotorua, but fell in Tauranga and Mount Maunganui/Papamoa after a strong rise in March.

Volumes fell just over 11% across the region but were up 3.5% on a seasonally adjusted basis compared to March 2011 and up 1.3% on a seasonally adjusted basis compared to April 2010.

The median days to sell improved by 4 days to 60 days in April 2011 compared to 64 days in March 2011 and 79 days in February 2011, although the days to sell were 8 days longer than April 2010 (52 days).

Hawkes Bay

In line with most regions the median house price increased in April 2011, recording a 4.4% rise across the Hawkes Bay region compared to March 2011, although prices are down 1.5% compared to April 2010. Napier's price rise of almost 10% in April 2011 compares to a similar sized fall in March 2011.

Volumes were noticeably weaker across the region, with almost 40% fewer sales in April compared to March 2011 and 28% fewer than April 2010.

The median days to sell for the region was 41 days, the second shortest for New Zealand in April 2011. This is 11 days shorter than 52 days to sell recorded in March 2011 and 1 days shorter than the 42 days to sell recorded in April 2010.

Manawatu/Wanganui

The Manawatu/Wanganui region recorded a moderately positive result for April 2011, with prices rising almost 1% compared to March 2011 and the fall in volumes lower than the national result. The median price rose noticeably in Wanganui on higher volumes. Prices also rose by more than $6,000 in Palmerston North City and volumes remained steady compared to March 2011.

The April result for the region indicates that the seasonal lift may have occurred later this year compared to previous years after a weak March 2011 result was recorded.

The median days to sell remained steady at 49 days in April 2011 compared to March 2011, although this was 4 days longer compared to April 2010 (45 days).

Taranaki

The median house price for the Taranaki region increased by $9,000 or 3.3% compared to March 2011, and was down only $500 compared to April 2010. Prices in New Plymouth City were up strongly compared to March 2011, although the number of sales was down by almost 43%. The fall in prices in Taranaki Country comes after a strong rise in March 2011; care needs to be taken due to the small size of the dataset for this suburb.

Volumes fell 14.5% in April 2011 and equal the same number of sales as in February 2011, although volumes are down 9% compared to April 2010.

The median days to sell in Taranaki fell to 45 days in April 2011, compared to 49 days in March 2011 and 59 days in April2010.

Nelson/Marlborough

The median house price for the Nelson/Marlborough region increased by $10,000 or 3% compared to March 2011, and fell by only $500 compared the April 2010. Prices increased noticeably in Marlborough/Kaikoura on flat volumes compared to March 2011. Prices in Richmond were also up noticeably in April 2011 compared to March 2011, although the low volume of sales indicates the result should be treated with caution.

Nelson/Marlborough's days to sell increased by 1 day to 57 days in April 2011 compared to March 2011, and increased by 14 days compared to April 2010.

Canterbury/Westland

Volumes increased in Christchurch City by 63% compared to March 2011, but were almost 40% below April 2010, due to the continuing effects of the February 22 earthquake. The fall in volumes in April compared to April 2010 is significantly lower than the 68% fall in volumes recorded between March 2011 and March 2010.Volumes were up noticeably in South Canterbury, although noticeably weaker in Timaru.

Median prices rose 4.7% in Christchurch City in April 2011 compared to March 2011 and up 1.5% compared to April 2010. Prices were also up strongly in Mid-Canterbury. Across the region the median price increased by almost 7% compared to March 2011, and was flat compared to April 2010.

The median days to sell improved by 1 day to 49 days in April 2011 compared to March 2011. However, days to sell eased by 13 days compared to April 2010.

Central Otago Lakes

The median house price rose 8.2% between March 2011 and April 2011, the second strongest rise across New Zealand. Compared to April 2010 Central Otago Lakes recorded the strongest lift in prices with an 11.5% increase or almost $50,000. Volumes in April 2011 were up strongly compared to March 2011, and up 6% compared to April 2010.

The median days to sell for the Central Otago Lakes region fell 13 days to 47 days in March 2011 and fell 9 days compared to April 2010.

Otago

The median house price for the Otago region recorded the strong rise across New Zealand for April 2011 with a 9.3% increase; however, this comes after a weak March 2011 result. The comparison with April 2010 provides a fairer view on the overall trend in house prices for the region. Volumes fell in line with the national trend compared to March 2011 but rose the most of any region compared to April 2010.

The median days to sell improved by 3 days to 47 days in April 2011 compared March 2011, but were 9 days longer compared to April 2010.

Southland

Median house prices increased by 4.0% in April 2011 compared to March 2011 and by 4.5% compared to April 2010. Southland recorded the second strongest increase in house prices on an annual basis in April 2011, with only Central Otago Lakes recording a greater increase. The change in volumes was better than the national result compared to March 2011, but was weaker when compared to April 2010.

Southland's days to sell lengthened by a full 14 days in April 2011 to 50 days, compared to 36 days in March 2011 and 37 days in April 2010. Southland had the worst change in days to sell across New Zealand in April 2011.

Source: Landlords.co.nz

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