A steady price rise in the Northland property market has seen real estate companies organising extra auction days or bringing them forward to cater for an increase in demand from buyers.
The latest monthly QV House Price Index for August shows property prices in Kaipara rose 9.9 per cent, Far North 6.1 per cent, and Whangarei 4.6 per cent, with Aucklanders comprising nearly half of all buyers.
Bayleys Whangarei brought forward two home auctions on Monday and one was sold at $20,000 more than the buyer's asking price.
Both properties were snapped up by Aucklanders who plan to move to Northland in future. The other house in Bream Bay was sold for $472,000.
Branch manager Tony Grindle said another auction on Friday would feature a house from Kensington, owned by a woman in her 90s, which attracted more than 200 people during an open home.
"This is 10 times more than the numbers we would have experienced in previous years."
Unlike previously, Mr Grindle said his company now brought properties to auction within 48 hours after homeowners agreed to a price offer.
"At Monday's auction, the owner got offers on Thursday which were good enough. They were willing to accept $342,000 but during the auction it got to $363,000 and they were ecstatic."
On Friday, the company is auctioning a three-bedroom house in Powhiri Ave in Kensington and two residential/lifestyle/commercial-type liquidated properties in Kerikeri.
The Kensington house has been on the market for three weeks and Mr Grindle said 115 people viewed the property in the first week.
He said 16 groups or people would bid for the house with a CV of $360,000. Typically, the fastest-selling houses in Whangarei were in the $200,000 to $400,000 range but Mr Grindle said that had broadened to $500,000.
The average current value of residential properties is $363,663 in Kaipara, $353,402 in Whangarei, and $318,869 in the Far North.
The latest price index shows 284 houses were sold in Whangarei in August, 147 in the Far North and just 49 in Kaipara. However, the August prices in Northland were still down from the highs of 2007.
QV said house values in provincial centres such as Whangarei continued to rise due to an upward trend seen in areas such as Auckland.
New rules set to come in that require a 30 per cent deposit for investment property in Auckland and a softening of the loan-to-value ratio for the regions may also be a factor in the latest trends.
Jeff Robinson, a QV home valuer in Whangarei, said people should realise Northland's residential property market was not flourishing in all areas. Homes valued at more than $400,000 were taking time to sell.
"There's still more interest from Auckland buyers. An increase in the limit from $300,000 to $350,00, where people can access their KiwiSaver scheme, has increased the pool of houses but they are available in certain areas only," he said.
"Interest rates are low at this stage but the deposit limit is still affecting people, although banks have some discretion there."