What do House Price Falls Mean for You?

Sunday 17 October 2004

Articles are starting to come out of house prices falling in various regions. And when you look at graphs of price trends adjusted for inflation - which show we've had the biggest boom since the mid 70s - it's hardly surprising.

By The Landlord

What does it mean for those who already own their home or a rental property, and for those who are thinking of buying either their first home or a rental?

Most current home owners won't be affected much. If you move, you'll get less for your old home but pay less for your new one.

However, you should be more wary than in the recent past of committing to buy a new home before selling the old one.

Houses are taking longer to sell - an average of 31 days in August, up from 25 in August 2003, says BNZ chief economist Tony Alexander. And that trend is likely to continue.

Back in early 2000 the average was more than 60 days, and it could happen again. If you have bought a home and your old place is languishing on the market for two or three months, that's when you're likely to accept a much lower price than you originally envisaged.

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