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January Residential Market Off To A Good Start

January Residential Real Estate Market Off To A Good Start - Real Estate Institute

The residential real estate market got off to a good start to the year assisted by strong sales volumes in January, Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (Inc), National President, Mr Graeme Woodley said today.

Continuing the strong market experienced during 2002, the residential median price for January rose to $193,400 compared with $192,000 in December 2002 and the 2002 high of $195,000 in November.

On a year-by-year basis the national median price has risen 10.51 per cent from the January 2002 median of $175,000.

Graeme Woodley attributed the strong performance to a much more liquid market than in the last two years, supported by encouraging economic growth, stable interest rates, strong consumer confidence, and positive migration trends.

“Some thought that the decline in the December median from the November high was a sign the market had come to the end of its run, but these fluctuations are common in what is a quieter period for the market.”

Total sales for January were 8,159, compared with 7,766 sales in December and 6,771 sales in January 2002.

“ With sales at over 8,000 in January, it is interesting to look back two and three years to January 2001 sales of 4,741 and January 2000 sales of 5,214, in order to realise how much stronger this market is now, after a couple of pretty depressed years.”

Auckland sales were particularly strong at 2,832 in January 2003 compared with 2,511 in December and 2,288 in January 2002. Wellington sales were a little less buoyant in January at 859 compared with 892 in December but up on the January 2002 figure of 819.

Canterbury/Westland sales grew steadily from 909 in January 2002 to 984 in December, breaking through to 1,089 in January 2003.

Mr Woodley said the rise in prices across the main centres was surprisingly uniform and tended to negate suggestions that larger markets such as Auckland were driving the rise in the national median price.

“While the national median rose by 10.51 per cent, Auckland rose by 11.02 per cent, but Wellington wasn’t far behind with 9.94 per cent year-by-year growth, Canterbury/Westland increased 11.42 per cent and Otago median prices grew by 12.24 per cent”.

The Auckland median price for January 2003 was $272,000, up from $267,500 in December 2002 and $245,000 in January 2002.

The Wellington median was $210,000, compared with $215,000 in December and $191,000 in January 2002, while Canterbury/Westland was very buoyant at $156,000 compared with $151,750 in December 2002 and $140,000 in January 2002.

Otago median prices at $100,000 were unchanged on the December figure, but up on the January 2002 figure of $98,000.

However Mr Woodley noted that while the Auckland increase was broadly in line with the national median, there were clearly some areas in Auckland experiencing exceptional growth in values.

The North Shore median price increased 19.4 per cent to $320,000, from the January 2002 median of $268,000 while Auckland City median increased by 12.5 per cent from $280,000 in January 2002 to $315,000 in January 2003.

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