Fierce competition among housebuyers in the Western Bay has seen one property receive seven offers in one day as well as auctions being brought forward and homes being sold within days of being listed.

House sales in Tauranga were up 52 per cent year-on-year in January, according to new figures.

Statistics released by Real Estate Institute of New Zealand yesterday showed 91 houses were sold in Tauranga in January last year while 138 houses were sold last month.

From a buyer's perspective, be prepared to move quickly.


Local realtors were not surprised with the statistics, as the Tauranga market had been seeing strong interest from buyers and new listings selling quickly.


First National Mount Maunganui, Tauranga and Omokoroa owner Anton Jones said buyers needed to be prepared to move quickly.

"One property in Ohauiti recently had seven offers in one day," he said.

"There are a lot of buyers sitting here waiting."

He said there was still a shortage of listings.

"They tend to sell very quick, especially property values around $400-$500K.

"Even the more expensive ones are having a very good run at the moment," Mr Jones said.

His advice was for buyers to move quickly, but still do their homework.

"From a buyer's perspective, be prepared to move quickly," Mr Jones said.

"Try to have pre-finance in place or have finance up to a level where you know you can reduce the number of conditions - without being silly, you still have to do a building report, etc."

Ray White Papamoa auctioneer Wayne Olver said the market was a lot busier than January last year.

Read more: Property values highest recorded

He said certain types of property, those in the $400-$600K price range, had immediate impact in the current pool of buyers.

Mr Olver recalled an Arataki house up for auction in mid-January where they had to bring the auction date forward because there were so many interested buyers.

"There were probably seven people bidding on the property.

"The lady who bought the property had previously missed out on another two, so she was determined that at the end of the day she was going to buy it.

"The house had hit the market January 15 and was gone by the 27th," Mr Olver said.

He noticed last month was a lot busier than January a year ago but said it was not nearly as busy as October, November and December of last year.

"We were still seeing a huge influx of Auckland buyers which isn't happening so much now, though they are still there but it's not the heated market it was at the end of the year."

Chief executive of Eves and Bayleys, Ross Stanway, said buyers needed to act promptly in this market, though not to neglect due diligence.

"If buyers do due diligence and it ticks all or most of their boxes of requirement, they need to act fairly quickly because there is strong competition, especially at certain middle price levels.

"But don't make rushed decisions," Mr Stanway said.

He said there were two sides to the latest sale volume statistics.

"One is that it's a good indication of the level of activity leading up to Christmas, a lot of property was marketed well leading up to the Christmas break and it's those properties that would have sold in January.

"The other side of the coin is that there's in general more properties being sold per week than are coming in as new listings, that's an interesting situation."

REINZ regional director Philip Searle said the Tauranga market was still seeing strong interest from Auckland-based buyers with both first home buyers and investors active in the market.

He said listings remained in short supply with the market characterised as being 'hand to mouth' with new listings being sold very quickly.

Wider region:

* Sale volumes in Rotorua climbed 114 per cent and Eastern Bay of Plenty rose 61 per cent compared to last January.