Peter Thompson, Barfoot & Thompson mana' />
House prices fetched by Auckland's biggest agency are flat and might stay that way for a few more months.
Peter Thompson, Barfoot & Thompson managing director, said May figures showed the Budget held no big shocks and the numbers "reflect a stable and balanced market". Barfoot's average price last month was $542,806, only marginally up on April's $541,486.
This week, a report from realestate.co.nz showed prices sliding nationally but Auckland's market in somewhat better shape.
Mr Thompson highlighted the rise in sale volumes to 792, up on April's 671 deals but still well behind the year's peak in March of 927 deals.
Shamubeel Eaqub, NZIER principal economist, said the agency's numbers were no surprise.
"Sales are still flat. Rising mortgage rates have been the main influence and will continue to be so in my view," he said.
"The Budget changes were marginal and are unlikely to have major impact on prices and rents."
Philip Borkin of Goldman Sachs JBWere said on a seasonally-adjusted basis, prices dropped 0.8 per cent from April to May and were down 2.4 per cent in the year to May.
"Auckland house sales eased a touch in May and turnover remains at subdued levels," he said.
"We feel it is too early to get a meaningful indication of how the market is responding post-Budget tax changes.
"We will need to wait another month at least to get a gauge of this."
He warned that any pent-up demand could be offset by rising interest rates, waning net migration and ongoing affordability issues.
Mortgage approval data out from the Reserve Bank this week showed declines, he said.
Less approvals were made in the week immediately after the Budget and approvals generally remain at subdued levels, he said. He warned against jumping to any conclusions about the worst being over for landlords.
"We believe it is far too early to get a gauge of how the market is responding now that the details of tax changes are known.
"It is unlikely to be until later in June or even July before we can meaningfully determine the response to the Budget."
House price growth would moderate during the rest of this year and remain modest for the foreseeable future, Mr Borkin predicted.