Average Auckland house now costs $1 million


The city of sails has finally done it. The average Auckland house price has topped $1 million.

The latest figures from Quotable Value, released Tuesday, have confirmed what has been predicted for months on end - the average house price in the region is now $1,013,632.

Values are now 85.5 percent higher than the previous peak of 2007, before the global financial crisis.

Auckland prices have increased 6.1 percent over the past three months and 15.9 percent year-on-year.

The money needed to buy an average house in the super city could now comfortably buy two in Christchurch. The average price in the garden city is $492,766, and in Wellington region it's slightly higher at $536,065.

QV national spokesperson Andrea Rush says new lending rules from the Reserve Bank have driven movement in the market.

"There was a strong surge of activity in June and July, however it now appears the new LVR restrictions for investors adopted by banks towards the end of July have started to have an impact in the housing markets in Auckland, Tauranga and Hamilton during August."

She says a flurry of activity at the beginning of the quarter was not offset by a slower August.

"In recent weeks there has been a drop-off in market valuation requests, auction clearance rates, open home attendees and loan application rates in these centres."

Nationally, the figures show residential property values have risen 6 percent in the last three months and 14.6 percent year-on-year, only slightly slower than in Auckland.

The average house value nationwide is $612,527, 47.8 percent higher than the 2007 peak.

The North Shore is leading the race with an average house value of $1,183,443, an increase of 5.5 percent over the past three months and 14.9 percent year-on-year.

The shore is closely followed by the former central city suburbs with an average value of $1,180,245. They have had a slightly smaller increase in value: 5.3 percent in the past three months and 14.3 percent over the last year.

QV general manager Jan O'Donoghue says the market has eased since the LVR kicked in.

"More homes are passing in at auction, or receiving no bids although properties are still selling post auction by negotiation."

Wellington values are increasing faster than in Auckland, up 17.2 percent since August 2015. The average price in the wider region is $536,065.

QV homevalue general manager David Nagel says the increase in price is driving young people further from the city.

"Open homes and auctions are being well attended, particularly at the low- to mid-value range and first-home buyers continue to look further afield from the Wellington city suburbs in an attempt to secure an affordable home."

In comparison to the rest of the country, the Christchurch market is very slow. Home values in Christchurch city increase just 3.5 percent on the previous year and 0.5 percent in three months.

QV homevalue Christchurch registered valuer Damian Kennedy says a shortage in property listings could be to blame.

"Listings are around 30 percent lower than they were this time last year.

"Agents are hoping it is just a more pronounced annual seasonal slowdown we see during the colder winter months - people's gardens don't look as good in the winter and we are the 'Garden city', so they tend to wait until spring before putting their property on the market."