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NZ April house values lift, prompting market slowdown

Property Here - Tuesday, April 09, 2013

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Photo / NZ Herald
Photo / NZ Herald

Housing valuations are the highest in seven years, prompting a slowdown in the market as some buyers hold off until prices become more affordable, according to property valuation experts.

Quotable Value's property value index for March shows that nationwide residential values continued to increase last month.

Values are 3.3 per cent above the previous market peak of late 2007, with a 1.3 per cent increase over the past three months and a 6.5 per cent increase over the past year. operations manager Kerry Stewart said a "continued lack of listings" in Auckland had worsened over the past month as home owners started to hold onto their properties more.

"Many buyers are also starting to feel that house prices are unreasonable and are waiting it out to see if houses become more affordable.

"Auctions are still popular especially in the inner city where the market remains heated. In general the right properties will still go at the right price," Mr Stewart said.

QV valuer Pieter Geill said young buyers in Wellington were also put off by the high prices, with some houses that were perceived to be too highly priced not selling quickly.

The website's research director Jonno Ingerson said values were still increasing nationwide but there were signs the rate of increase had slowed in the last month or two in Auckland, Hamilton, Christchurch and Dunedin.

"However it is still too early to tell if this is the start of a more widespread slowing of values," he said.

"The number of properties on the market remains limited, particularly in Auckland. This has constrained the number of sales at a time when buyers have generally shown more confidence and have been keen to purchase."

Main centres:

* Auckland house prices up 11 per cent on last year

* Hamilton prices up 1.3 per cent over the last three months and 4.6 per cent on last year

* Tauranga prices up 0.8 per cent over the last three months and 0.3 per cent on last year

* Wellington prices have steadily increased since November and up 2.1 on last year

* Christchurch values up 7.8 per cent on last year

* Dunedin prices up 1.7 per cent over the past three months and 4.4 per cent on last year.