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Residential Property Values Stabilise - REINZ

19 April 2002

The national median sales price for March 2002 is equivalent with that recorded in February, indicating that values are stabilising nationwide, according to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand.

REINZ National President Mr Rex Hadley said that members had reported a high level of enquiry amongst homeowners, but that nationwide there is a shortage of listings.

He said, “A recent Massey University Survey identified that the majority of New Zealanders aspire to home ownership, and the Institute believes that this high level of enquiry is largely from those seeking to take advantage of the current interest rate environment before rates, which have been gradually firming, put that dream out of reach.”

The national median price for March was $186,000 consistent with February and compared to the $173,500 recorded for March 2001.

The national sales volume for March was 9,742 compared with 8,773 in February and the March 2001 figure of 6,182.

The last time the national sales volume was higher than this was in March 1996, at 10,056 sales.

Mr Hadley added that the high sales volume was in part a seasonal trend influencing residential property.

He said, “March is traditionally one of the most active months for real estate transactions and 2002 is no different, however the national sales volume firmed significantly on both a month-to-month and year-to-year basis. There was a firming of 1,009 transactions from February to March and in comparison to the same month last year, transactions have increased by over 3,560 sales.
“Such a high level of improvement over last years sales volume bodes well for the residential housing market in 2002.”

Mr Hadley said, "Regional sales volumes have improved throughout New Zealand, with eight of the eleven regions showing increases on the same period last year.
On a year-to-year basis, the median sale price rose for eight of the eleven regions, those being; Northland, Auckland, Hawkes Bay, Wellington, Nelson/Marlborough, Taranaki, Southland and Otago. The regions that eased on year-to-year comparison were, Waikato/BOP/Gisborne, Manawatu/Wanganui, and Canterbury/Westland.

On month-to-month comparison, the median sale price also rose for five of the eleven regions, those being; Auckland, Northland, Taranaki, Nelson/Marlborough, and Wellington. The median sale price for six of the eleven regions fell on a month-to-month basis, namely; Hawkes Bay, Otago, Waikato/BOP/Gisborne, Manawatu/Wanganui, Canterbury/Westland, and Southland.

According to Mr Hadley, the total value of sales nationwide in March 2002 of $2.24 billion, rose from the 1.97 billion recorded in February and the 1.39 billion in March 2001.

He said, “Total expenditure in the property market increased by $270 million on a year to year basis, and the increase from February 2002 to March 2002 is even more marked, the total value of sales rising by 850 million.”


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