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Volumes ease – prices firm

Data released today by the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ) shows there were 290 fewer lifestyle property sales (-13.8%) for the three months ended August 2021 than for the three months ended July 2021. Overall, there were 1,809 lifestyle property sales in the three months ended August 2021, compared to 2,409 lifestyle property sales for the three months ended August 2020 (-24.9%), and 2,099 lifestyle property sales for the three months ended July 2021.

9,893 lifestyle properties were sold in the year to August 2021, 2,699 (+37.5%) more than were sold in the year to August 2020. The value of lifestyle properties sold was $10.56 billion for the year to August 2021.

The median price for all lifestyle properties sold in the three months to August 2021 was $940,000 and was $190,000 higher compared to the three months ended August 2020 (+25.3%). The median price for Bare land Lifestyle properties sold in the three months to August 2021 was $486,250 and was $108,750 higher compared to the three months ended August 2020 (+28.8%). The median price for Farmlet Lifestyle properties sold in the three months to August 2021 was $1,175,000 and was $295,000 higher compared to the three months ended August 2020 (+33.5%).

Brian Peacocke, Rural Spokesman at REINZ says: “Sales volumes for lifestyle properties for the three months ending August 2021 reflect a distinct drop of 16.6% from the same period in 2021, but a quiet 8.3% increase from the period ending August 2019.

August 2021 - total sales = 1809

August 2020 - total sales = 2409

August 2019 - total sales = 1744

“Across the same period, the median price recorded for New Zealand has improved from $700,000 (August 2019) to $750,000 (August 2020) to $940,000 (August 2021)

“Irrespective of other influencing factors, sales evidence clearly demonstrates the following:-

(i) that purchasers, to date, consider lifestyle property to be a dependable and worthwhile investment

(ii) that constraints such as the COVID-19 induced lockdown has not seriously impacted on the willingness of people to participate in property activity

(iii) that the supply demand equation persists - shortage of property equals increase in price,” he concludes.

Brief Points of Interest around the country include:

North Island

  • Northland - a heavy decrease in sales volumes of 62% from the peak in March 2021; holding par on median price at $750,000
  • Auckland - 50% drop in sales volumes from March 2021; 6% increase in median price
  • Waikato - 45% drop in numbers from March 2021; a minor easing in the medium price to $1,050,000
  • Bay of Plenty - 20% easing in volume; a slight strengthening in price
  • Gisborne/Hawkes Bay - 30% decrease in volume; holding par on price at $1,050,000
  • Taranaki - a total collapse of 75% in sales numbers; medium price remains steady
  • Manawatu / Wanganui - sales numbers down 33%; median price has firmed 6% over the last month
  • Wairarapa/Wellington - 50% drop in sales numbers; median price improved 7.5%.

South Island

  • Nelson/Marlborough - sales volume collapsed by 75%; medium price eased marginally to $1,030,000
  • Canterbury - the trend continues with a 28% drop in sales numbers; 4.5% decrease in median price
  • West Coast – a disappointing 56% decrease in sales volumes; balanced by a comfortable 12% increase in median price to $189,000
  • Otago - the only region to hold par on sales volumes, largely due to the popularity of the Central Otago region; a sound increase of 6.1% in the median price
  • Southland - sales numbers suffered by a drop of 65%; a slight easing in the median price to $485,000.

No regions recorded an increase in sales compared to August 2020, with West Coast (-2 sales) and Southland (-13 sales) observing the smallest decreases. Waikato (-130 sales) and Auckland (-86 sales) recorded the biggest decreases in sales in the three months to August 2021 compared to the three months to August 2020. Compared to the three months to July 2021, no regions recorded an increase in sales.

12 regions saw the median price of lifestyle blocks increase between the three months ending August 2020 and the three months ending August 2021. The most notable examples were in Gisborne/Hawkes Bay (+75.6%) and Otago (+42.6%) with the biggest decrease being in West Coast (-8.9%).

The median number of days to sell for lifestyle properties was 25 days less in the three months to August 2021 than in the three months to August 2020, sitting at 45 days. Manawatu-Wanganui (35) and Taranaki (37) recorded the shortest number of days to sell in August 2021. Southland (69) and West Coast (60) recorded the longest number of days to sell.


Real Estate Institute of New Zealand

For more real estate information and market trends data, visit For New Zealand's most comprehensive range of listings for residential, lifestyle, rural, commercial, investment and rental properties, visit - REINZ's official property directory website.

Editors Note:

The information provided by REINZ in relation to the lifestyle real estate market covers the most recently completed three-month period; thus, references to August 2021 refer to the period from 1 June 2021 to 31 August 2021.

From April 2021 there has been a change in the methodology for calculating rural statistics. To date, the rural statistics have referred to a Return Period which is the month in which a sale record was submitted to REINZ. Going forward, the rural statistics will refer to an Unconditional Month i.e., the month in which the sale went unconditional. This change in methodology ensures that sales that took place in April, for instance, are recorded against April even if they were submitted to REINZ late. The change also brings Rural statistics calculation into line with the Residential statistics calculation, where the Unconditional Month approach has been used successfully to calculate Residential Statistics for several years now. The Unconditional Month methodology also ensures that the most up-to-date state of the REINZ database is reported at the time the data is released with revision of prior months statistics often occurring to reflect the submission of late data or sale amendments that took place after the prior statistics release.

In addition to the calculation period change there are two additional changes to the data worth noting:

1. 12 Districts have been replaced by 13 Regions. These are consistent with the parts of the residential press release and it has been done to be consistent with regional definitions outside REINZ e.g., Statistics NZ

2. Dairy Support is a new farm category and we now have the ability to separate Lifestyle Blocks into Bareland and Farmlets.

If you have any questions regarding this change in methodology, please email

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