A pre-Christmas rush on Rotorua real estate has seen sales volumes exceed the national average.

According to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand's (REINZ) latest figures there were 115 homes sold in Rotorua during November, up 11.7 per cent on the 103 sold in October.

Sale volumes climbed 22.3 per cent in a year, up from the 94 sold the year before.


The Bay of Plenty, which saw 533 house sales last month, was one of the top performing regions with the region's sale volumes jumping 17.4 per cent. The national annual increase was 3.3 per cent.

Local real estate experts are putting the boost in sale volumes down to a pre-Christmas rush.

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REINZ chief executive Bindi Norwell said the Bay had the third largest increase in sales volumes in November, behind Gisborne's 39.3 per cent increase and 28.6 per cent on the West Coast.

Norwell said part of the jump in the region's sale volumes was due to a 14.6 per cent rise in listings during October.

"November is traditionally a busy time of year as people look to buy and sell properties ahead of Christmas," she said.

"We're hearing lots of feedback from agents in the region that they've been very busy in the lead-up to Christmas."

Professionals McDowell Real Estate co-owner Steve Lovegrove said the region's success didn't surprise him.

"What we saw, and it's natural, was over the winter months there was a massive shortage of stock. Properties weren't coming on the market and buyer demand was out-stripping stock.

"Then in October, we saw a swell of properties come on to the market. Because of that the buyers who want to buy have been able to. That I think has been a core factor."

Lovegrove said there had also been a small exodus of landlords selling on the back of rental property changes.

FOR MORE PROPERTY NEWS AND LISTINGS GO TO ONEROOF.CO.NZ

Simon Anderson, chief executive of Realty Group which operates Eves and Bayleys, said the increase in sale volumes showed continuing confidence in the Rotorua market.

"We have seen some good sales in the Lakes area," he said.

Anderson said there were still plenty of first-home buyers in the market, looking for the keys to their first home.

OneRoof editor Owen Vaughan said buyers saw Rotorua as an affordable market.

"The bulk of sales are taking place at the sub-$500,000 end of the market ... Those priced out of neighbouring Tauranga will view Rotorua as a viable option. The fact that Rotorua properties are increasing in value will add to demand."

REINZ regional director Neville Falconer said the Bay of Plenty experienced a mixed market during November.

Median prices in Whakatāne were up 14.7 per cent year-on-year, yet in Ōpōtiki they were down 13.8 per compared with the same time last year.

"November was a busy month across the region with the number of sold houses increasing by 17.4 per cent compared to November last year," Falconer said.


WHERE WERE THE MOST SALES?
- Owhata: 13
- Pukehangi: 9
- Springfield: 9
- Ngongotaha: 8
- Western Heights: 8
- Lynmore: 7
- Pomare: 7

WHAT TYPE OF HOMES WERE SOLD?
- Less than $400,000: 49
- $400,000 to $499,000: 25
- $500,000 to $599,000: 17
- $600,000 to $699,000: 12
- $700,000 to $799,000: 4
- $800,000 to $899,000: 4
- $900,000 to $999,000: 2
- $1 million and over: 2
Source: REINZ