Hovering pessimism in residential housing market

Tuesday 9 November 2004

For the second quarter in a row, the ASB Bank Housing Confidence Survey shows continuing pessimism about buying new homes -- and chief economist Anthony Byett suggests houses may drop by 5 per cent over the next 6-12 months.

By The Landlord

The survey showed that a net negative 7 per cent (-7) thought the October quarter had been a good time to buy, a result that was unchanged from the July quarter, and that confidence is lower in the South Island.

That net loss indicates that more people said it was not a good time to buy than said it was a good time to buy, which means there are still optimistic would-be buyers about -- but they're getting thinner on the ground.

South Islanders continue to be the most wary about the housing market, the proportion of the opinion that it is a good time to buy being a net negative 21 per cent, below the national average of a net negative 7 per cent.

The survey also showed a growing number of people expected interest rates to rise -- as well they might have, since it was taken before the universally anticipated 28 October Reserve Bank hike in the official cash rate.

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