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Record setting March further evidence of tight Auckland market

Another set of data provides yet more evidence of the fact that activity in Auckland’s housing market remains at fever pitch.

Tuesday, April 7th 2015, 12:00AM

by Miriam Bell

High levels of sales activity and record prices characterised Auckland’s housing market last month, according to the latest data from Barfoot & Thompson.

In fact, Barfoot & Thompson’s managing director Peter Thompson describes March’s sales activity as “unprecedented”.

He says March is always the most active month for property sales, but there has never been a month’s trading to compare with the past month – which has resulted in a string of new records.

These include:

• An increase of 3.9% on the average sales price, leaving it an all-time high of $776,729. This is over $17,000 higher than the previous record average price set in December 2014.

• A 1.1% increase in the median price which is now $711,000. This is 9% higher than the median price in March 2014.

• 1597 homes sold over March which is the highest number of sales ever in a calendar month. A quarter of those sales were in excess of $1 million in price.

Thompson says that, thanks to a stable economy, low interest rates and restricted housing availability, buyers are not being put off by the record prices – which are also encouraging sellers to put their properties on the market.

As a result, his agency now has the highest amount of sales listings that it has had in 10 months.

“While sales activity in April is unlikely to match that for March, given the relatively good level of choice available trading can be expected to remain extremely active.”

Westpac chief economist Dominick Stephens says the Barfoot & Thomson data shows sales rose modestly - although they are 14.7% higher than in March 2014 they are 11% lower than the post-election peak reached in December 2014.

However, new listings rose sharply.

Stephens says there was a frenzy of house sales shortly after the election, which led to a drop in the number of houses available on the market.

“The latest data indicates that about two-thirds of that decline in available stock has been recovered. Still, the only way to describe this market is tight.”

In his view, the data confirms that the Auckland housing market is very strong, although not quite as rampant as it appeared late last year.

“We remain comfortable with our forecast for 7.5% house price inflation this year, on a nation-wide average basis. We would also expect Auckland to outperform that average figure.”

« Healthy lifestyle property market: REINZTread warily over dollar rise - Newland »

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Kiwibank - Offset 5.15 - - -
Kiwibank Special - ▼3.39 ▲3.55 3.89
Liberty 5.69 - - -
Napier Building Society - - - -
Nelson Building Society 5.70 4.25 4.15 -
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Pepper Money Specialist 7.59 - 7.39 7.39
Resimac 4.50 4.86 3.89 3.94
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TSB Bank 6.09 4.35 4.25 4.69
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TSB Special 5.29 3.55 3.45 3.89
Wairarapa Building Society 5.70 4.85 4.99 -
Westpac 5.34 4.15 4.09 4.49
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Median 5.34 4.04 4.09 4.39

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