The housing market has seen a midwinter pick-up according to two sets of real estate figures, but is not in a boom despite the median house price hitting a new record median price in June.
Keen home buyer interest in Auckland and Christchurch – which together make up about half of national activity – drove the national median price up 3.3 per cent from a year earlier to $372,000, the Real Estate Institute said.
However, REINZ chief executive Helen O’Sullivan cautioned that the apparent strength of the market was still far from reaching the boom years of the mid to late nineties.
“The overall pattern for the rest of New Zealand shows improvement in sales volumes, with prices on the whole steady rather than up,” she said.
There were 6135 unconditional sales in June, a rise of 906 sales compared to last year but a fall of 14.5 per cent from May.
Almost all regions experienced an increase in house sales compared to June last year, with Canterbury up 56 per cent.
Houses are taking less time to sell with the national median ‘days to sell’ falling by seven days to 37 days compared to June last year, but only one day less than May this year.
Canterbury and Westland recorded the shortest days to sell at 31 days, followed by Auckland at 32.
When it comes to how houses are being sold, auctions comprised 14.5 per cent of sales in June or some 891 houses, up from 11 per cent in June last year.
Values in Christchurch were up 5.8 per cent over the past year and 1.3 per cent over the past three months to sit 1.5 per cent above the peak of late 2007.
With Thanks to Jenny Keown and Fairfax News