Buyers' market as NZ flooded with new homes for sale

A massive rise in the number of homes up for sale has real estate agents saying there hasn't been a better time to buy in almost a decade.

New data from realestate.co.nz says there are 17 percent more properties up for grabs in Auckland than this time last year, and 20 percent more brand new listings.

"In Auckland we have 10,000 homes for sale, and 4449 were brand new fresh stock to the market this month," spokesperson Vanessa Taylor told The AM Show.

If no new homes came onto the market, it would take 25 weeks for Auckland to run out of places to buy - two weeks longer than usual.

"It means that buyers have a lot more choice and can take a considered approach to their buying process," said Ms Taylor.

RealEstate.co.nz
Photo credit: RealEstate.co.nz

But that's only in Auckland. Nationwide, we'd run out of new houses in just 20 weeks - 33 percent faster than the long-term average of 30 weeks.

Asking prices a mixed bag
 

The average asking price nationwide fell 2.1 percent between September and October. Auckland asking prices fell 1.3 percent to $964,936. While that remains an eye-watering figure, Ms Taylor says first-home buyers are unlikely to be spending anywhere near that.

"When you look at the market - so I'm looking at one- to two-bedroom homes - in Auckland, the national average asking price for all homes is $960,000; if you take the one- to two-bedrooms, it actually drops down to just over $600,000. So albeit that $120,000 for a deposit is still a pretty scary amount, it's not quite as bad as $200,000."

Despite asking prices falling 4.4 percent, Central/Otago Lakes remains the only region with a seven-figure average asking price - $1,057,019. Falls were also recorded in Canterbury, Wellington, Southland and Otago.

Ms Taylor says investors and owners shouldn't be too worried however.

"It certainly hasn't gone backwards by any stretch of the imagination. When we're looking at the pricing - we do have expensive homes here in New Zealand, if you compare it to [overseas] markets."

RealEstate.co.nz
Photo credit: RealEstate.co.nz

Leading the regions that saw asking prices rise is Coromandel, up 6.5 percent since September to $752,842. Others rising include the Central North Island (3.3 percent), Waikato (1.8 percent), Hawke's Bay and Manawatu/Whanganui (both up 3.9 percent), Marlborough (5.4 percent), Bay of Plenty (2.8 percent) and Northland (1.2 percent).

Ms Taylor says Hawke's Bay is a "hotbed" of activity.

"Those new listings are continuing, prices are seeing a bit of an upturn I that market as well. The Taranaki region is seeing an increase as well… Manawatu-Whanganui is looking promising - just over $376,000, up 3.9 percent on the months prior."

Asking prices as of October 2018

  • Northland - $595,511
  • Coromandel - $752,842
  • Auckland - $964,936
  • Bay of Plenty - $638,391
  • Waikato - $584,755
  • Central North Island - $454,310
  • Taranaki - $441,985
  • Gisborne - $350,383
  • Hawke's Bay - $545,301
  • Manawatu/Wanganui - $376,546
  • Wairarapa - $492,597
  • Wellington - $633,884
  • Nelson and Bays - $642,298
  • West Coast - $294,507
  • Marlborough - $526,658
  • Canterbury - $498,208
  • Central Otago/Lakes $1,057,019
  • Otago - $394,982
  • Southland - $300,514

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