New Zealand house prices hit a new record, up $80,000 within a year according to the Real Estate Institute whose chief says it's too soon to see any effects of coronavirus.
Data just out from REINZ showed national house prices rose from $560,000 last February to $640,000 last month and seven regions record new record medians.
"It's too soon to see any effects from COVID-19 on sales volumes, however, this is something we'll be keeping a close eye on over the coming months," said Bindi Norwell, referring to strong fundamentals including low-interest rates.
Even the previously sluggish Auckland market has fired up again, median prices up 4.3 per cent from $851,000 a year ago to $888,000 last month. That was the highest Auckland price in more than four years.
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"February was a very buoyant month from a price perspective with median price rises the largest the country has seen in 53 months and record median prices for New Zealand," Norwell said.
Sales volumes were also strong, up 9.2 per cent annually from 6132 sales last year to 6694 last month, the highest in February in four years.
Auckland volumes rose 41 per cent from 1390 sales last February to 1968 last month, setting a five-year record, REINZ said.
The REINZ House Price Index for New Zealand, measuring changing values, increased 8.7 per cent year-on-year to 3013 – a new record high. The index excluding Auckland increased 10.2 per cent from February last year to 2995 another new record high.
The Auckland index increased by 6.9 per cent year-on-year to 3035, the highest annual percentage increase in 35 months and the first time the Auckland region crossed the 3000 mark, REINZ said.
Norwell said Auckland volumes rose to an 88-month high. ll seven areas of Auckland enjoyed double-digit volume increases. The largest was Papakura with 83 per cent rises annually.
Barfoot & Thompson also this month reported strong February Auckland sales at 804, also the highest in a February for five years but the average and median prices declined markedly in the past three months.
February's average was $920,553, down 3.3 per cent on January. The median price at $820,000 was down 7.3 per cent on that for January, the agency said.
"High new listings also contributed to a high number of sales. At 1640 new listings were excellent and this was a 50 per cent increase on the average number for the previous three months," the agency said earlier this month.
By the end of February, the agency had 3670 properties for sale, 990 properties down on the same time last year.
Sales of properties in the $1m and $2m-plus categories during February were significantly ahead of last February and accounted for 30.8 per cent of the sales total, the agency said.