Auckland house prices close to record
The median sale price for a house in Auckland rose 12 percent last month from a year earlier as both sales volumes and new listings fell, according to the city's largest realtor.
While Auckland house sales accelerated in March following a slowdown earlier this year, ASB says the market remains supply constrained by a pick-up in demand and drop in supply.
The median price rose to $798,000 from $711,000 in March 2015 and was up 8.1 percent from February, Barfoot & Thompson said.
It is just $2000 shy of the record price set in December.
The firm had 1341 sales last month, down 16 percent from a year earlier while new listings fell 6.2 percent.
Residential building permits for Auckland jumped 49 percent in February from a year earlier, for an annual 9534, but is still below the 13,000 the city is estimated to need to match population growth.
"As it has been for the past two years, lack of supply remains the main price driver," managing director Peter Thompson said.
"Although a record number of building permits are being issued, and new homes are springing up everywhere, Auckland is simply not building homes fast enough to keep up with the growing population."
He said that government figures show the population of Auckland rose by 3000 in February and that based on an average occupancy of three people to a house, that implied monthly demand would rise by 1000 properties on that basis alone.
"March is always one of the busiest sales months of the year, and a good indicator of where prices are tracking for the remainder of the year," Mr Thompson said.
Newshub / NZN