The Auckland property market ended the year with the strongest December sales numbers and prices on record.
Sales were more than double those recorded on average for the month over the past five years.
"In December we sold 1479 properties at an average price of $1,092,518 and at the median value of $1,005,000," said Peter Thompson, managing director of Barfoot & Thompson.
"This is our strongest December sales period ever, and the sixth straight month we have sold more than 1000 homes in a month. Only once before have we sold more than 1000 homes in a December, and that was in 2014 when the market was building towards the peak of the last price cycle."
With more Aucklanders home than in the past, the figures were up significantly on the December period in previous years.
"For the past five years our sales numbers in December have averaged less than half this year's December sales," said.
Thompson added that there will be more to come in January and February.
"What these sales numbers do not show is the large number of yet to be completed and conditional sales in the pipeline, many of which will show up in January and February sales data, and this will ensure that the market makes a strong start to 2021."
Economists forecast national house prices could rise by as much as 13 to 16 per cent in the next few months. Westpac, ASB, BNZ and Kiwibank economists say low interest rates and high demand will continue to have an impact in the new year.
The economists' predictions vary, but they agree that 2021's housing market will build on records set last year.
These predictions come despite the Reserve Bank's scheduled introduction of tougher lending rules for investors in March.
Westpac chief economist Dominick Stephens said house price inflation had a way to run yet and he's picking big growth this year.
"We are forecasting a peak of 16 per cent annual house price inflation in June 2021, and a full-year increase over 2021 of 12.2 per cent," he said.