More Auckland houses for sale, but fewer buyers

New figures show a spike in the number of Auckland homes being put on the market.

But while more houses are for sale, the number of people buying them has dropped.

Harcourts says the number of Auckland houses for sale is up nearly 30 percent from last year, but at the same time it reports sales are down 16 percent.

Those at an auction in Albany on Sunday said they've noticed a changing market.

"There's no doubt there's a lot more stock on the market, there's a lot more that are sale by negotiation," says developer Mark Wilson.

However, real estate companies are hopeful the sales-slowdown won't last long.

Harcourts chief executive Chris Kennedy says it could just be a seasonal adjustment.

"We come off the hype of the first three months of the financial year where there's a big surge into March," he explained. "I'm not too concerned about it at this stage."

Despite more houses coming onto the market, prices aren't likely to drop. Current migration levels mean there's always demand.

"Seventy-thousand net positive landing in New Zealand, now 50,000-55,000 of those people are going to rest in Auckland," says Mr Kennedy.

He says there's another reason buyers might be thinking twice - the country's growing problem with methamphetamine-contaminated houses.

"You've got to be conscious of it, and mum and dad investors are very conscious of it, because they don't want to get caught up in it because it's a nightmare for some."

The average price in Auckland is just over $1 million dollars - 14 times the city's average income.

Jeremy Wade from TradeMe Property says that presents a huge challenge.

"Increasingly people are looking to the bank of mum or dad or both to fulfill that, but the question is: what happens 20 years from now? That cycle's got to repeat itself."

Harcourts is advising people not to wait for a downturn. Average prices continue to rise - they're up 4 percent on the same time last year.