Early Signs of Spring Lift - REINZ stats August 2022

Friday, 16 September 2022


New Zealand's winter property market continues its recent trend slowing from the pace of sales and price rises of last year - properties stay on the market longer, and median prices dip. 


Across New Zealand, median prices for residential property decreased 1.8% annually, from $825,000 in July 2021 to $810,000 in July 2022. Month-on-month, this represents a 4.7% decrease from $850,000 in June.

Jen Baird, Chief Executive at REINZ, comments: “The median property price across New Zealand decreased 1.8% to $810,000. This is the first decrease in annual median price movement for New Zealand overall since July 2011. Moving from June to July, we note a 4.7% decrease and indicating weaker performance than expected. the seasonally adjusted figures show a decrease of 2.8%,

“We saw a significant upswing in prices since the initial COVID-19 lockdown in early 2020, reaching a peak in November 2021. While the median property price is showing an annual decrease, affordability remains an obstacle for many — which is now being driven by rising interest rates, inflation and tighter lending criteria.

“In more affordable regions, we have continued to see significant growth compared to larger markets such as Auckland and Wellington. Buyer demand remains intact in Canterbury, and specifically Christchurch, reflected in the region’s strong performance over the past months.

“On the other hand, the Wellington market hasn’t fared so well. According to local agents, the number of attendees at open homes has fallen, days on the market have increased to 61 days in July 2022, and sales activity has eased. Stock is staying on the market for longer and the properties selling are those where vendors have met the market.

“Real estate markets are cyclical, after a period of strong upward movement, it is slowing. However, prices tend to decrease more slowly than they increase and after a period of stability, the market tends to regain momentum and median prices start their climb. We are in the easing part of the market cycle,” Baird says.


Those with the greatest annual percentage decrease were:

West Coast: decreased 54.9% annually from 51 to 23

Auckland: decreased 48.7% annually from 2,767 to 1,419

Northland: decreased 44.0% annually from 243 to 136

Waikato: decreased 43.5% annually from 742 to 419



Regional Analysis - Northland

“Northland’s median price decreased by 1.2% year-on-year this August to $642,000. Motivated vendors are reassessing their asking price position. According to local salespeople, the biggest impact on the market is bank approval for loans, increasing interest rates, cost of living and the ability to service a mortgage.

“Off the back of plenty of commentary and predictions around prices, buyers are still waiting for prices to ease further. The number of new listings in August decreased annually by 4.4% and buyers are acting with hesitancy. In Kerikeri, well-priced properties are seeing good attendance at open homes and receiving satisfactory demand. The Northland market is still moving, and activity is predicted to ramp up once we are in spring.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 57 days is the same as the 10-year average for August which is 57 days. There were 37 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 27 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Auckland

“Auckland’s median price decreased by 8.3% year-on-year to $1,100,000 in August 2022. Salespeople in Rodney say they experienced reduced activity across the board, whereas in Central and South Auckland owner occupiers remain active.

“Attendance at open homes was low but is starting to pick up — a result of better weather, open borders, the anticipation of spring and people looking to purchase before the end of the year. The number of auctions is lower than a typical August month — even compared to this time last year when New Zealand was in a COVID-19 lockdown in mid-August. However, Auckland salespeople say they are starting to see an increase in the number of auctions compared to previous months.

“Spring campaigns are commencing, which usually leads to more activity in the market.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 48 days is much more than the 10-year average for August which is 36 days. There were 32 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 22 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Waikato

“The median price in Waikato remained the same as last August at $780,000. In Taupo, most sales were conditional and the process of getting the sale over the line was slow. Rising interest rates have impacted the amount first home buyers can borrow, generating concern and caution within this buyer group.

“Hamilton salespeople say homeowners were prevalent in the market, with growing interest from first home buyers. Buyer enquiry has been encouraging, giving vendors confidence that if their property is well marketed and priced fairly it will be attractive to prospective purchasers.

“Stock levels are high in Waikato — up 169.0% annually. This is providing greater choice for buyers who are taking their time before jumping into any purchase decision.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 50 days is more than the 10-year average for August which is 41 days. There were 33 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 26 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Bay of Plenty

“Bay of Plenty’s median house price rose by 6.5% year-on-year to $895,000 this August. Stock levels remain high — up 170.2% annually, and new listings increased 62.0%. Bay of Plenty salespeople say they are still proactively managing vendors’ price expectations.

“In Rotorua, buyers are waiting for easier access to finance and for prices in the region to ease. More sales were subject to conditions such as house sales in August. Attendance at open homes was inconsistent and the most active buyer groups over the course of the month were owner occupiers and first home buyers. Rotorua salespeople say that the local election coming up in October may interrupt the region’s usual spring lift in activity.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 59 days is much more than the 10-year average for August which is 44 days. There were 25 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 18 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Gisborne

“The median house price in Gisborne increased by 13.2% annually reaching $566,000 in August. Owner occupiers dominated the market — taking the opportunity to upsize or downsize their property. New listings decreased by 17.1% and stock levels are slowly starting to ease.

“Sales counts in Gisborne had an annual increase of 72.7%, with 22 properties sold in August 2021 and 38 sold August 2022. However, this will be in part due to the nationwide COVID-19 lockdown, which commenced in mid-August last year. Gisborne salespeople say rising interest rates and inflation will determine how the market plays out in the months ahead.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 42 days is more than the 10-year average for August which is 37 days. There are 17 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 11 weeks more than last year.


Regional Analysis - Hawke's Bay 

“In August, Hawke’s Bay saw a slight increase in its median house price annually — up 0.7% to $702,270. There were very few first home buyers and investors looking to buy, and vendors were still looking to achieve a premium price — unless they needed to sell due to relocation or had committed to purchasing another property.

“There was solid attendance at open homes for highervalued properties; however, for properties in the low to midprice range, attendance was low. Inflation and uncertainty are having the biggest influence over market activity.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 58 days is much more than the 10-year average for August which is 39 days. There were 19 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 12 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Taranaki

“Taranaki’s median price increased 12.7% year-on-year to $637,000. The South Taranaki District reached a record median price of $545,000. Salespeople in the region say owner occupiers were most dominant in the market and many offers were subject to sale. Investors are scarce due to rising interest rates, uncertainty around price growth and a general lack of confidence in the economy.

“New listings increased by 11.9% and Taranaki’s stock levels remain high — up 139.8% year-on-year. Market activity is expected to pick up when daylight savings changes and we head into spring.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 45 days is more than the 10-year average for August which is 38 days. There were 15 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 9 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Manawatu/Whanganui

“Manawatu/Whanganui had an annual decrease of 6.6% in its median house price — down to $570,000 this August. Salespeople in the region say first home buyers have been driven out of the market due to loan-to-value ratios, rising interest rates and overpriced properties, making them unaffordable for many.

“Investors have been negatively impacted by the new regulations and tax legislation. Open home attendance was light, however, well-priced listings received reasonable attendance. Sales counts also increased by 1.7% annually, bearing in mind that in mid-August 2021 New Zealand was in a Level 4 lockdown.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 56 days is more than the 10-year average for August which is 38 days. There were 26 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 18 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Wellington

“Wellington’s median price decreased by 9.3% year-on-year from $860,000 in August 2021 to $780,000 in August 2022. Despite a decrease in median price, first home buyers were scarce and owner occupiers continued to dominate the overall buyer pool.

“Vendors are realistic with their price expectations, and buyers are waiting to see if prices will ease further. The hesitancy amongst buyers saw the median days to sell increase by 25 days annually from 34 days in August 2021 to 59 days this August. Wellington salespeople say banks’ stringent lending criteria, rising interest rates and it being a winter month all negatively impacted the market in August.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 59 days is much more than the 10-year average for August of 36 days. There were 20 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 15 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Nelson/Marlborough

“In August, the Nelson, Marlborough and Tasman regions saw median prices rise by 3.0%, 14.5% and 0.6% to $680,000, $670,000 and $810,000 respectively. Local owner occupiers drove buying and selling activity, and first home buyers started to return with more interest. Flooding in the region impacted attendance at open homes and auctions. Marlborough also had a 37.5% decrease in new listings on the market.

“Vendors remain optimistic but are reluctant to see their property stay on the market for too long, which is motivating many to reassess their original price expectations. Largely due to the weather and flooding, sales counts decreased year-on-year by 30.0% in Marlborough and 14.5% in Tasman. Nelson bucked the trend and saw a slight increase in sales counts by 1.8% annually. Despite the recent flooding, people still want to come to the Nelson, Marlborough and Tasman regions for work and lifestyle opportunities, and this demand is expected to increase heading into the warmer months.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 56 days is much more than the 10-year average for August which is 38 days. There were 19 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 13 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - West Coast

“The West Coast saw a significant uptick in its median house price in August — up 25.0% annually to $350,000. It was a settled month for the West Coast’s market coming off the back of the floods, which occurred earlier in the year. Sales counts saw a decrease of 15.0% compared to August 2021, and new listings declined by 4.5%.

“Vendors are adjusting their price expectations and meeting the market. West Coast salespeople say that a good spring and summer predicted may allow spirits to rise and encourage more vendors to list their property, and more buyers to make purchasing decisions.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 42 days is much less than the 10-year average for August which is 103 days. There were 38 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 26 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Canterbury

“The median house price in Canterbury increased 4.8% year-on-year reaching $650,000 this August. Two districts reached record median prices: Mackenzie District ($860,000) and Waimate District ($515,000). Owner occupiers were most active in the region and investors started to make a comeback. First home buyers were the least active of all buyer groups in August.

“Heading into spring and the weather improving motivated more people to make changes — whether that’s buying or selling. People are still showing interest in the Canterbury region — there was strong enquiry from out-of-town buyers. Auction attendance was moderate and is showing a positive outlook for spring.

“Most vendors are now meeting the market. Canterbury salespeople say they saw price adjustments occur if a property was not sold in the campaign period.” (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 36 days is more than the 10-year average for August which is 34 days. There were 16 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 10 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Otago

Dunedin City -  “In August, Dunedin’s median price saw a 4.6% decrease annually from $629,000 in August 2021 to $600,000 this year, the same as last month’s median. With buyers finding access to finance a little easier and some good opportunities in the market, buyer numbers are up at open homes and the general sentiment is significantly more positive than it has been in recent months.

“Vendors understand the price adjustments needed to meet the market and many are adapting their expectations.” (REINZ)

Queenstown Lakes - “The median price in the Queenstown-Lakes District continues to rise — up 13.6% year-on-year to $1,250,000. Owner occupiers remain the most active buyer group in the market. However, as lending restrictions ease, first home buyers are beginning to show interest again. Investors seem to be most impacted by Government restrictions right now, which is seeing them step back from the market.

“Open homes are busy, and auctions are still a popular method of sale for buyers and vendors who understand the benefits of a quick conditional sale. On the back of a great winter in the region, visitor numbers have given the local economy a boost and buyers from out of town have become more visible. Spring is looking positive for the Queenstown-Lakes District" (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 51 days is much more than the 10-year average for August which is 35 days. There were 15 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 7 weeks more than the same time last year.


Regional Analysis - Southland

"In August, Southland’s median price increased 9.9% annually from $405,000 in August 2021 to $445,000. Invercargill City reached a record median of $488,000.

Last year, Great South (the Southland Regional Development Agency) conducted an analysis of the housing situation in Southland and concluded that there was a housing shortage. It warned that the shortage would worsen, and industry development would be impacted. The region has now undergone significant planning to ensure there is more housing available, and substantial projects are underway to allow some of its main centres to flourish, inducing more employment opportunities, tourism and residents. (REINZ)

The current Days to Sell of 45 days is more than the 10-year average for August which is 40 days. There were 15 weeks of inventory in August 2022 which is 6 weeks more than the same time last year.

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