More than half a billion dollars worth of properties have sold across Rotorua in the past 12 months, and new figures reveal which suburbs have been making the most sales this year.

Real Estate Institute of New Zealand figures supplied to the Rotorua Daily Post show 1707 properties were sold from June 2015 to May 2016, for a total of $535,039,958 - nearly double the previous year when there were 950 sales worth just over $281 million.

The figures also reveal Owhata topped the list as the hottest suburb for sales in January to April this year with 81 properties.

Pukehangi came in second with 57 properties, followed by Ngongotaha with 56 properties.


But some local real estate agents say the suburb rankings are more likely reflective of where the most properties are available, not necessarily the most sought-after suburbs.

Ray White Rotorua co-owner Anita Martelli said Owhata was a large suburb with a mixture of properties available.

"Generally we are being asked more for Lynmore as a specific suburb but it comes down to where the stock is. Our top three most sought-after suburbs are Lynmore, Springfield and Glenholme, but if there are no properties available in those areas, people will widen their search."

Ms Martelli said she was not surprised Ngongotaha was in the top three 'hot suburbs', with the quaint village piquing the interest of buyers.

"It has a nice community and it's not far from town. It has a slightly more country feel and has properties across the price spectrum, from the lake-edge properties to those appealing to rental investors or buyers new to the market."

Ross Stanway, chief executive of Eves and Bayleys Real Estate, said there were different reasons each suburb would be attracting buyers.

"There is always demand in sought-after suburbs because the underlying reasons for their popularity does not change, but other suburbs, like Owhata, that perhaps have not been as popular in the past, are being seen for their good value for money properties in the rising market."

Real Estate Institute Industry of New Zealand spokeswoman for Rotorua and First National principal Ann Crossley said the current market was "not about who's buying, it's about who's selling".

"Buyers have to be prepared to go where the stock is. The properties we refer to as 'stuck stock' are those that sit on the market unsold. Most of those are gone now so when a new property goes on the market, it's selling pretty quickly and buyers are feeling the pressure."