Numbers of houses for sale surges, annual sales numbers also up

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 11 Jan 2022, 11:52AM
New data out today on the real estate market. Photo / Andrew Warner
New data out today on the real estate market. Photo / Andrew Warner

Numbers of houses for sale surges, annual sales numbers also up

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Tue, 11 Jan 2022, 11:52AM

The number of residential properties for sale nationally has surged nearly 30 per cent annually, and the number of properties sold is also up. 

Vanessa Williams, realestate.co.nz spokesperson, said today the total number of homes now for sale was up 29.7 per cent since December 2020. 

A Real Estate Institute spokesperson also said this morning the number of properties sold had jumped annually, from 75,665 in 2020 to 81,256 last year. 

The Reinz data is for the 11 months from January to November for each year (the body is yet to release its December 2021 sales data, which is due next Tuesday). 

Williams said Auckland residential property numbers for sale were up 30.7 per cent, Waikato and Bay of Plenty up 45 per cent, Hawkes Bay up 107 per cent, Wellington up 206 per cent and Manawatu/Wanganui up 133 per cent. 

But listing volumes dropped in the Coromandel down 28 per cent and the Central Otago/Lakes district down 20 per cent. 

The Central Otago/Lakes district has almost a $1.4 million average asking price, making it the most expensive region to buy a property in the country. 

Auckland's asking price is up 18.5 per cent annually to $1,225,265 and the Coromandel is up 25.2 per cent to $1,110,512, Williams said. 

The national average asking price hit a 14-year record high last month, up 23.4 per cent annually to $985,245. 

Hawke's Bay asking prices rose 36.9 per cent to $865,209, Wairarapa 30.1 per cent to $827,766, Bay of Plenty 29.1 per cent to $999,978, central North Island 28.8p per cent to $825,617 and Canterbury 27 per cent to $674,222. 

Yesterday, the Herald reported national house sales data out early next week would be unlikely to show major adjustment but that could change soon. 

Mark Lister, head of private wealth research at Craigs Investment Partners, doesn't forecast any big jolt from Real Estate Institute sales data to be issued next Tuesday. 

"I expect the December figures to still look solid. I suspect we might need to wait a few months to get a clearer picture of the impact higher interest rates are having," Lister said today. 

"Most economists and commentators are expecting a much slower housing market in 2022, although that doesn't necessarily mean price falls. Sharply higher mortgage rates will inevitably bite, but it's probably too early for this to show up in the data." 

His comments follow last week's Barfoot & Thompson numbers which showed strong sales activity. 

Peter Thompson, Barfoot & Thompson managing director, has announced that further price records were set and more than 200 properties were sold for $2 million-plus. 

December's average $1,278,647 was up 7.4 per cent for the quarter and 17 per cent annually. But the $1,235,000 median was up 22.9 per cent annually, he said. 

Lister and many others including the Reserve Bank say brace for a change. 

"I wouldn't underestimate the impact of higher interest rates. Low interest rates have been the single biggest driver of this housing boom in my opinion, so a sharp reversal in the cost of money will definitely have an impact. The 1yr mortgage rate moving from 2.2 per cent to 3.7 per cent within six months is big," Lister said yesterday. 

- by Anne Gibson, NZ Herald