Winter, bank lending limits, the election and China's crackdown on capital flows have all been blamed for national house value growth being the slowest in five years and Auckland values hitting their most glacial pace since 2011.
The QV House Price Index out this morning showed that nationally values only rose at 4.8 per cent over the past year to hit $641,648.
Auckland values only rose at 2.8 per cent to an average $1,041,957, the slowest growth rate in six years. National values rose 1.2 per cent in the three months to August, while Auckland values fell 0.2 per cent in that time.
National QV spokesperson Andrea Rush said that a lack of listings over winter, LVR restrictions and stricter lending criteria by retail banks had led to a 30 per cent drop in market activity and sales volumes compared to the same time last year.
"General elections also traditionally compound any annual winter slow-down in the housing market due to uncertainty caused by potential policy changes so it's likely this is also a factor in the subdued sales activity," she said.
"In Auckland new sub-divisions previously popular with speculators including those from China have also recently seen lower demand and discounted sales prices."
"It's possible the crack-down by the Chinese Government on the amount of capital allowed to leave the country may be a factor as it's now much harder for new migrants or foreign buyers from China to get their cash out to purchase property," Rush said.
Hamilton values rose 5 per cent in the last year and 1.4 per cent in the last three months to hit $544,469.
QV Hamilton valuer Stephen Hare said the market remained relatively subdued in the past month with listings staying on the market for a longer period, fewer properties going at auction and some properties selling for under the listing price.
Tauranga values rose 9.6 per cent annually and 1.7 per cent in the last quarter to reach $694,361.
QV Tauranga registered valuer David Hume said the market was stable, with the panic buying of 2015 and 2016 giving way to a more subdued approach from buyers.
"Investors are definitely much less active in the market than they were during the previous two years and we are also in a traditionally flat period in the market, at the end of winter with an upcoming general election," Hume said.
Napier was a stand-out, values there were up 18.8 per cent annually to $459,393. Values rose 5.3 per cent in the last quarter alone. QV homevalue Hawkes Bay registered valuer Michelle Drinkrow said out of town buyers, first home buyers and investors were active.
"We are noticing that buyers are now taking a bit more time and doing their due diligence some are also accepting faults or issues that may have previously put them off a property as they have been searching for so long. There is still a lack of listings with many taking a wait and see approach in regards to the election and the colder months," she said.
Wellington values were up 12.6 per cent annually to hit $724,511 while Christchurch rose 0.1 per cent annually to hit $493,069.
Rush said values might rise more early next year.
"It's likely the annual spring upturn in the market may be slower to arrive given the pending election but with the underlying drivers of a lack of supply and high net migration particularly in Auckland still remaining, it's possible that values may begin to rise again more steadily in the new year," she said.