Last year's most expensive New Zealand property sale was the $27.5 million deal on a minimalist-style Herne Bay waterfront home and now we are just past the midpoint of 2019, it is a good time to examine the top residential and lifestyle property sales of the year so far.
New Zealand's luxury property market is being impacted by "heightened levels of global uncertainty".
The transfer of a $13.9 million "stunning hidden getaway" near Arrowtown is the biggest property deal of the year to date.
And while several other properties have been sold during 2019 for excess of $10m; none come close to last year's residential high of $25.5m, let alone the all-time record of $39m set in 2013.
James Wilson, valuation innovation director of Valocity, said while the well-presented housing stock was attracting strong interest levels, sales prices were still to match some of previous years.
"Agents are still reporting strong interest levels," Wilson said.
"But heightened levels of global uncertainty are having an impact on our high-end luxury property market."
Last weekend the Herald on Sunday reported a three-home resort-style Bay of Islands property - which cost $26m to develop – had been on the market for 17 months.
The Government's foreign buyer ban was cited by the property's real estate agent as one of the reasons buyers may be deterred, while the owner also said both the ban and the price could be a factor.
This year's big deals feature the Wanaka getaway, a clifftop home surrounded by beaches, and two magnificent St Heliers homes.
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They're not only in highly desirable areas but in some cases, still have major development potential. And if you happen to own a helicopter, all the better as there's the potential to nip in and out in your chopper.
• #1 $13.9m, 704 Malaghans Rd, Speargrass Flat, near Arrowtown
Nick Goodall, CoreLogic head of research, said the most expensive New Zealand property sale on-record so far this year was a title transfer for $13.9m, where the owner sold his own southern lifestyle property into a company he controls.
The 12ha property has been previously advertised as a "stunning hidden getaway", with a north-facing stone cottage finished to the highest standards.
The transfer or sale was from the owner Tim Roberts to a company he directs, Malaghans 704. The Australian billionaire has bought three rural properties in the Queenstown area, including Walter Peak Station.
On July 5, Roberts told the Otago Daily times the transfer was simply a "restructuring arrangement".
• #2= $12m, 205 Church Bay Rd, Waiheke Island
The July 3 sale of part of Te Rere Cove on Waiheke Island went for $12m, according to the provisional sale price on the official record. That price has never been revealed before.
The entire property which had previously been listed had been valued at $24m.
Financier Martyn Reesby bought part of Dee Crawford and David Parkinson's place: the house, all wine-making facilities and part of the vineyard on 8.8ha but not the neighbouring 5ha planted in pinot gris, hence he paid well below the $24m valuation.
• #2= $12m, 20 Omaha Block Access Rd, Leigh
Carmel and Hugh Fisher's Panetiki Ltd bought an entire clifftop headland north of Auckland: 20 Omaha Block Access Rd, Leigh.
That deal on March 7 for $12m settled on June 4. The vendor was J R Courtenay Trustee Co, the estate of the late John Courtenay whose family holidayed and planted in native vegetation there. Carmel Fisher said she was planning a lodge at the place.
The Fishers founded Fisher Funds, one of the country's largest fund managers.
• #4 $10.5m, 27 Hanene St, St Heliers
Goodall said 27 Hanene Street, St Heliers went for $10.5m on April 10.
It was bought by Michael John Reid and Pauline Mary Reid and settled on May 10. Reid runs Union Pacific Corporation. Agent Graham Wall advertised views across the harbour and Kohimarama back to the city, a 1917sq m section and big open-plan living areas.
• #5 $10.2m, 14 Aumoe Ave, St Heliers
Goodall said the $10.2m deal was on April 3 when the property was bought by Douglas Colin Brooker, Anna Margaret Brooker and Lasbrook Trustees. It settled on June 28. Brooker is an aerobatic flying champion.
The house is on a 2434sq m site, was built in 1983, has a circular entry forecourt, self-contained apartment and expansive views.
LOOKING BACK TO 2018 TOP DEALS
• 2018 #1 $27.5m, 15 Cremorne St, Herne Bay
None of this year's deals come anywhere near Simon and Paula Herbert's $27.5m purchase of 15 Cremorne St, Herne Bay, with its own boat-shed, helicopter pad, pool overlooking the waterfront and beachfront access. That place was sold by Stephen Graham Lockwood of insurance business Crombie Lockwood, and Lewis Thomas Grant.
• 2018 #2 $25.5m, 542 and 538 Remuera Rd,
The Herberts last year sold their Remuera Rd property for $25.5m, allowing them to set 2018's record with the Herne Bay purchase of 15 Cremorne St (see above). The Herberts owned the adjoining 542 and 538 Remuera Rd. They sold it to a family who came here from China.
• 2018 #3 $17.6m for 45 Cliff Rd, St Heliers
The Italianate-style house at 45 Cliff Road was built in 1999 and is a three-level house and gatehouse. It sold around November last year and names on the title now are business couple Warren and Jean Lewis.
OneRoof editor Owen Vaughan said it was clear that there is still a market for waterfront homes with luxury finishings but the foreign buyer ban had reduced the pool of available buyers for high-end properties which affected price and days on the market.
"The busy end of the market in Auckland is in the sub-million-dollar band, with first-home buyers active and snapping up affordable stock," Vaughan said.