A great summer could be behind why Northland real estate prices continue to rise, but the region's property market is still well below the record high values of 2007.
Figures released by QVNZ show that, nationally and locally, property prices increased further in May.
Nationally, the average sale price of residential properties in May was $436,097, a 1.7 per cent rise on the previous month and 7.1 per cent up on this time a year ago and 5 per cent higher than the market peak in 2007.
In Northland, the Whangarei average property price was $329,285, a 1.6 per cent rise on the previous month, but the same as a year ago and 16.8 per cent below the 2007 high.
The average property price in the Far North was $312,993, 0.3 per cent up on the previous month and year, but 23.3 per cent below the 2007 peak. In the Kaipara, the average price in May was $315,212, a 1.6 per cent rise on the previous month and 3.7 per cent higher than this time in 2012. However, it is still 21.4 per cent behind the 2007 highs.
Auckland prices again lead the country, with prices up 12.7 per cent in the past year and dwellings averaging $920,652 in the central city.
QVNZ Northland team leader Bruce Wiggins said a great summer had seen prices lift in coastal areas of Whangarei, but predictions that Northland could piggy-back off Auckland's booming property market had yet to bear fruit.
"The areas benefiting from Auckland at the moment are places like Mangawhai and Snells Beach and I think it's too soon for Whangarei to see those benefits. It will come, just not yet," Mr Wiggins said.
Northlanders returning home after living and working overseas were also a factor in the latest rise, particularly in the higher end of the market.
"There's been some good sales, particularly out on the coast, and the good weather we have had, with summer being kinder than it has been for years, has helped that, while Northlanders returning from overseas has contributed to some of the higher priced sales."
Lifestyle properties were also in demand.
Mr Wiggins said there were an estimated 1940 homes for sale in Whangarei alone, out of a property pool of about 35,000 homes.