The November 2011 NZ Property Report published by Realestate.co.nz provides an insight into the state of the New Zealand property market as measured by the supply side of the property market over the month of November. The key measures of the market analysed in the report are the number of new listings, the asking price expectation for those new listings and the level of inventory of unsold houses on the market at this time. The report is compiled from data captured by the website and represents close to 95% of all property movements in the NZ market as managed by licensed real estate agents.
A full print version of the NZ Property Report – November 2011 is published below and is available for download (1.5MB) and distribution.
Summary of the market – November 2011
The property market is now firmly in the active Summer season with a strong surge of new listings coming onto the market to provide variety for the prospective buyers who have certainly been more active over the winter and spring period of this year. This current level of activity is likely to result in full calendar year sales in excess of 60,000. This would be up 7% on the prior year; however this level of sales is far below the peak of the property market (now a somewhat distant memory) of 2004 when in excess of 120,000 properties were sold in that year.
The slightly lower level of listings in October are now judged to have been influenced by the Rugby World Cup with sellers possibly hesitant to list at that time preferring to wait until the event was over before marketing their properties. It is still though noticeable the extent to which this year has seen a much lower level of new listings than 2010, so far this year 116,016 new listings have been brought to market 11% lower than last year.
With this new flow of listings has come what can be considered to be a confident position by sellers on asking price; which whilst slipping slightly in the month continues to show a slow but steady increase over the past few years. This confidence on the part of sellers is certainly supported by the rate of sale of property which is being shared by real estate agents in their daily contact with the public, and can also be seen in traffic to online listing sites which has seen an aggregated increase this year of 6% with over 187,000 daily visitor sessions across all sites (Nielsen Online).
The truncated mean asking price of $425,956 for all new listings in November eased slightly from the peak in October of $434,161. On a seasonally adjusted basis the asking price fell 2% indicating that whilst expectations are rising the rate of increase is not as high as seasonal factors would expect.
The long term trend as seen in the chart has been a steady increase in asking price over the past 3 years – the seasonal trend each year tends to see asking prices rise through from mid winter to October before falling back.
On a 12 month moving total basis the number of new listings in the past year totals 124,412 as compared 140,214 for the same period a year ago – a fall of 11%.
The level of unsold houses on the market at the end of November turned down slightly in what was a somewhat unexpected trend. At the end of the month there were 48,647 houses, apartments and lifestyle properties on the market barely up from 46,597 in October and down from 54,365 a year ago. This current level of inventory represents 38.1 weeks of equivalent sales.
Regional Summary – Asking price expectations
The national truncated mean asking price expectation among sellers eased slightly in November to $425,956. This price trend has been seen for each of the past 4 years as rising asking prices begin to ease as the summer approaches.
Across the 19 regions the view is generally of increasing prices with 12 regions reporting increases as measured against the recent 3 month average. There were 3 regions with rises of over 5% – Hawkes Bay, Nelson and the West Coast, the latter of these reporting a new record high up 25% over the prior year to $315,993.
Amongst the 7 regions showing a fall in asking price there were 4 regions where the fall was over 5% – Northland, Gisborne, Manawatu / Wanganui and Southland. The largest of these falls was in Gisborne which saw asking price fall by 29% vs. November last year, this level at $260,189 is approaching a record low last seen in early 2009.
Regional Summary – Listings
New listings rose across most of the country in November with just 5 of the 19 regions seeing falls in listings of greater than 5%. The biggest fall was in the Coromandel which was down 29% with just 247 new listings, this compares with levels of over 400 in prior years.
Contrasting these regions were Nelson reporting 24% increase, Northland with a 46% increase and the Central North Island with an enormous 120% increase – this latter region has seen a consistently low level of new listings this year. In the first 10 months of this year only 1,284 listings came onto the market, whilst 296 new listing hit the market in the single month of November.
The remainder of the country seems to reflect a balance with 6 regions reporting barely changed levels of new listings which would indicate a balance between buyers and sellers.
Regional Summary – Inventory
Across the country there were a total of 8 regions where the advantage is to sellers. Of these the 5 regions of Auckland, Manawatu/Wanganui, Canterbury, West Coast and the Waikato remain very much in strong sellers markets. If anything the past month has seen a degree of rebalancing of the market overall in all but these extreme market-condition-affected regions.
There are however still 5 regions (Marlborough, Wairarapa, Southland, Taranaki and Gisborne) were the market is certainly favouring buyers with high levels of inventory set against long term average.
The market is now firmly in the peak summer season and with the more balanced market in terms of inventory of unsold properties on the market the options seem more open for both active buyers and sellers.
Lifestyle property listings shot up in November with 1,133 listings in the month, this represented a 15% seasonally adjusted increase but was down 5% on the same month last year. The truncated mean asking price at $574,507 was up 3% from last year but down 3% down on the recent 3 month average.
Across the country strength in new listings was seen in Northland (125, up 67% Yr. on Yr.) and the Waikato (120, up 13% Yr. on Yr.). Whilst the Bay of Plenty, Hawkes Bay and Wellington all saw year on year falls of over 25%.
New listings for apartments picked up in November with 535 apartments coming onto the market up 20% from October but 10% down on last year. The truncated mean asking price of $370,532 was up 2% from prior month and in line with last year.
The Auckland market which dominates the apartment market saw a stronger performance with 350 new listings which was 25% up on prior month and just 1.4% down on last year. The asking price was $352,407 which was up nearly 15% on last year and 2% up from October.
The monthly asking price for new listings presented in this report utilises the measure of ‘truncated mean’. This measure is judged to be a more accurate measure of the market price than average price as it statistically removes the extremes that exist within any property market that can so easily introduce a skew to traditional average price figures.
The truncated mean used in this report removes the upper 10% and the lower 10% of listings in each data set. An average or mean of the balance of listings is then calculated.
With the largest database of properties for sale in NZ, realestate.co.nz is uniquely placed to immediately identify any changes in the marketplace. The realestate.co.nz NZ Property Report is compiled from new listings coming onto the market from the more than 1,000 licensed real estate offices across NZ, representing more than 95% of all offices.
With an average monthly level of over 10,000 new listings, the realestate.co.nz NZ Property Report provides the largest monthly sample report on the residential property market, as well as a more timely view of the property market than any other property report. The data is collated and analysed at the close of each month, and the Report is compiled for the 1st day of the following month. This provides a feedback mechanism as to the immediate state of the market, well in advance of sales statistics, which by the very nature of the selling process can reflect activity with a lag of between 2 and 4 months.
In analysing the details of the 13,369 new listings in the month of November, a total of 138 listings have been excluded due to anomalies. The land area of the property defines the categorisation of Lifestyle property. The criterion is a property having in excess of 0.3 hectares and being situated outside metropolitan areas.
Background to Realestate.co.nz
Realestate.co.nz is the official website company of the real estate industry of New Zealand, it is an industry owned web business providing online marketing services to the real estate industry. The shareholders in the business comprise the REINZ (50%) and six of the largest real estate companies (50%).
The business operates a portfolio of websites all focused to specialist sectors of the real estate market:
Realestate.co.nz is the heart of the business and is focused to the residential property market. It features the most comprehensive selection of property for sale and rent across NZ. The website attracts a significant monthly audience of over 400,000 unique browsers, with over 110,000 of those visiting from countries outside of NZ.
nzFarms is a specialist website presenting the most comprehensive selection of farms and agricultural businesses on the market across NZ. At this time it features around 5,000 listings for all types of farms and agricultural land as well as over 11,000 lifestyle properties.
Prime Commercial is a specialist website presenting the most comprehensive selection of commercial property for purchase or lease on the market across NZ. At this time it features over 27,000 listings for all types of properties – retail, commercial, industrial and investment properties.
Prime Business is a specialist website presenting the most comprehensive selection of businesses for sale on the market across NZ. At this time it features over 4,300 listings for all types of businesses – retail, tourism, wholesale as well as franchise opportunities.
Zoodle is a specialist property information website providing very detailed data on all residential properties in NZ. The database comprises over 1.6m properties with detailed specifications, map and local amenities. The site provides online reports for free and for purchase covering valuation and legal information to greatly assist the needs of property buyers and sellers.
The web business of Realestate.co.nz site is the most comprehensive real estate web operation in NZ, currently hosting over 110,000 listings, covering this portfolio of residential property for sale and rent, commercial property for sale and lease, rural properties and farms, as well as businesses for sale. With a subscriber base of over 1,000 offices, the company represents over 95% of all listings from licensed real estate agents in NZ.
The full NZ Property Report for November 2011 can be downloaded here (1.5MB pdf document). Additionally the raw data is accessible here as an Excel spreadsheet enabling anyone to analyse the raw data and establish any trends or observations.
Usage rights are governed under attribution to the source of the data being Realestate.co.nz. The next NZ Property Report for December 2011 will be published on this website on Sunday 1st January 2012 at 10am.