Rise in house prices fuelled by first-home buyers - QV

There has been another uptick in the value of the housing market, with more first-time buyers in the market.

The latest QV House Price Index was largely flat in the three months ended September, with the average home value increasing 0.9 percent, over the previous three-month period ended August.

"You can best describe the market as flat right now, but we certainly are starting to see signs of life once more," Quotable Value (QV) operations manager James Wilson said.

"A recovery is under way, which is largely being fuelled by first-home buyers.

"They remain the most active group by far, but we're also now starting to see it expand beyond just entry-level locations for the first time."

The national house value was $899,256, with positive value growth in most of the main centres, led by Invercargill (3.2 percent), Auckland (1.6 percent), Wellington (1.5 percent), and Queenstown (0.9 percent) heading a list of 10.

The exception was New Plymouth, where values fell 1.5 percent in September, which was the second largest average home value reduction, with 1.8 percent decreases in Whangārei and Nelson.

"The mindset seems to be shifting within our main urban centres, with even Wellington gaining a small amount of momentum after experiencing some of the largest declines since the downturn began in late 2021," Wilson said.

"A return to record migration is also helping to fuel demand."

Wilson said the competition was putting upward pressure on prices, as the number of new property listings coming onto the market also remained largely flat overall.

"We've been experiencing a bit of a spring clean-out of old housing stock that has been sitting on the market for a while, but we're still yet to see the spring surge in listings that we'd typically see this time of year," he said.

"If the weather allows it, we'll likely see an uptick in residential property listings after the election.

"Until then, there is still lots of uncertainty out there, and markets don't tend to respond too well to uncertainty, especially while such strong economic headwinds continue to blow."