North sees biggest rise in price of houses

By Imran Ali

The asking price by Northland homeowners has had the biggest increase in nearly three years, according to the latest national property report for August.

Northland's average asking price of $388,790- up 8.4 per cent from $358,710 in July- was the highest rise throughout the country but said the latest price was merely where it should be at this time rather than a sudden rise.

It was the highest average asking price in the region for two years.

Property asking prices nationally rose by a mere 0.3 per cent.

The closest a region came to matching Northland's rise was Nelson at 7.9 per cent, followed by Central Otago/Lakes at 5.8 per cent.

"Northland house prices were steady from January, sitting at between $400,000 to $440,000 before it went down to $358,000 in July and now it's probably stabilising around the $400,000 mark," marketing manager Paul McKenzie said.

He said coming out of winter, there were less high-end houses on the market but asking prices and the number of listings would begin to go up during spring.

New property listings in Northland went up 12.1 per cent to 426 compared with August 2011, with central North Island, Gisborne, Taranaki and Wairarapa recording increases of more than 20 per cent.

It will take 112 weeks for all properties currently listed for sale in Northland to be sold - the second highest to Coromandel at 179 weeks.

"Although the asking price in Northland is up from July and if you take a three-month [May-July] and a 12-month rolling [to August this year], it was slightly down considering that the average asking price on a 12-month rolling period is $396,000," he said.

Mr McKenzie said although a lift in new listings of properties for sale in August had given the market a healthy start for spring, the market remained firmly in favour of sellers.

Nationally, there were 10,365 new listings in August, which was a 10 per cent increase from July and 12.4 per cent rise as compared with August 2010.

- Northern Advocate

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