Caution leads to fall in listings

Wednesday 6 September 2017

Regions around the Upper North Island have seen dramatic year-on-year falls in new property listings in, the latest Realestate.co.nz data reveals.

By Miriam Bell

Nationally, there were 8,729 new listings in August – which was a fall of 17.5% as compared to August last year.

All regions saw a decline in listings, except for Hawkes Bay and the West Coast which both saw an increase.

But it was regions in the upper half of the North Island that saw the most dramatic falls in new listings.

New listings in Auckland were down by 22.7%, in the Waikato by 23.2%, in Northland by 24.0% and in Coromandel by 37.6%.

Realestate.co.nz spokesperson Vanessa Taylor said that, along with the fall in new listings, there was static asking prices and muted demand nationally in August.

Average asking prices were down 1.7% nationally to $616,038 as compared to July, while demand was down 8.5%

“With inventory and demand both low, we are currently in a relatively stable price environment.”

While there were regional variances with some regions reaching record average asking price but seeing a fall in demand, Auckland saw both a fall in prices and a decline in demand.

Auckland’s average asking prices were down by 1% to $933,502 in August, as compared to July.

Further, of the 19 regions, demand for Auckland property sat at -23.9%, placing the Super City at the bottom of the table.

Taylor said the Auckland market appears to have lost its shine when it comes to potential buyer interest and asking prices have fallen.

For ASB economist Kim Mundy, the data showed housing market activity remains subdued.

She said the lack of new listings indicated would-be sellers are more cautious about listing their properties and would-be buyers are choosing to sit on the sidelines.

“Auckland continues to be driving this trend. New listings fell for the second month in a row, with total inventory levels down 12.7% over the month.”

But fewer new listings are seeing total inventory levels creep lower again, with seasonally-adjusted weeks of inventory back to the lowest level in four months, Mundy said.

“The Wellington market has remained particularly tight of late, but this month’s jump in new listings saw Wellington’s weeks of inventory measure lift to 8.9 (the highest since February 2016).

“In saying this, Wellington remains one of New Zealand’s most supply-constrained regions.”

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