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The Real Estate Institute of New Zealand’s (REINZ) November 2023 figures show more sales activity, more listings coming to market, lower days to sell and a sense of more confidence overall (year-on-year).
REINZ Chief Executive Jen Baird says October is showing a slow but steady improvement in property market activity now that the country is past the election, and we head into more active months in the property cycle.
We’ve seen steady activity this month with a small 2.5% decrease (from 5,762 to 5,619) in the number of properties sold month-on-month, and an 8.0% increase (from 5,205 to 5,619) compared to October 2022. For New Zealand excluding Auckland, the total number of properties sold has followed a similar pattern, decreasing 2.2% month on month and increasing 2.6% year on year from 3,573 to 3,665.
Across the regions, twelve of the sixteen regions had an increase in the number of properties sold year-on-year, with the top of NZ (Northland: +36.1%), and the bottom of NZ (Southland: +29.6%) having the biggest increases.
Median sale prices are a mixed bag across the country, with the national median sale price unchanged compared to last month, staying at $795,000 – around where it has been for much of the year. Year-on-year, there is a slight national decrease of 2.8%, while New Zealand excluding Auckland is down by 4.7% to $691,000 from $725,000.
Median sales prices year-on-year increased for several regions, with Tasman (+2.0%), West Coast (+2.6%), Canterbury (+3.2%), and Southland (+2.4%) all increasing. There has been a decrease in median sales prices across all other regions year-on-year this month.
“Local agents are reporting a lot more activity across buyer groups. They’re noticing more investors and first home buyers looking to secure properties sharing the market with vendors who are showing a willingness to be realistic with their price expectations. We can see signs of that in the median prices this month,” says Baird.
The market is moving a little quicker. Days to sell has decreased year-on-year by three days for New Zealand to 37, and by two days for New Zealand excluding Auckland, to 39. Regionally, just over half (9 regions) have had a decrease in the days to sell month-on-month and year-on-year. Year-on-year, Days to Sell in New Zealand decreased by 7 days compared to October 2022.
“Through the REINZ Monthly Ambassador Survey, agents are reporting increased engagement and more certainty from buyers in the bigger centres, especially post-election, supported by the warmer weather. Properties are taking slightly fewer days to sell on average, which is an anticipated sign of more positive things ahead.
At the end of October, the total number of properties available for sale across New Zealand was 25,602, down 3.7% (975 properties) from 26,577 year-on-year, and up 8.6% month-on-month. For New Zealand excluding Auckland, inventory also decreased by 117 properties (0.7%) year-on-year from 16,237 to 16,120 and increased 9.7% month-on-month.
Nationally, new listings increased by 2.6% from 9,289 listings to 9,529 year-on-year and increased 21.9% compared to September 2023. New Zealand excluding Auckland also saw an increase month-on-month of 23.4% and year-on-year 1.2%.
Every region showed an increase in listings month-on-month, with just over 58% for Northland, 40.2% for Wellington, 36.8% for Marlborough, and five other regions increasing by over 20%.
“The increasing number of listings coming to market is showing a slow, but marked, improvement to the past year, and a renewed confidence from vendors looking to sell with more certainty now the election is behind us. While details of the new Government are still being discussed amongst coalition partners, many vendors and buyers are showing confidence that it’s a better time to sell now and a good time to buy. The signs are there for an improving market.”
“Although REINZ data is showing a steadying ship this month, we should not discount the impact for those coming off high interest rates, the pressure of the cost of living, and the impact on the market post-election. Keep a close eye on the next three months of REINZ data as the new coalition Government’s policies land, migration flows remain high leading to pressure on both the residential sales and rentals market, the weather turns warmer (hopefully!), and we watch global factors play out,” comments Baird.
The HPI for New Zealand stood at 3,652 in October 2023, showing a 1.1% increase compared to the previous month. However, when compared to the same period last year, the HPI reflects a 2.5% decline. The average annual growth in the New Zealand HPI over the past five years has been 5.8% per annum. It remains 14.6% below the peak of the market in 2021.
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- The national median price has remained the same at $795,000 month-on-month and decreased slightly (-2.8%) year-on-year from $818,000. For New Zealand excluding Auckland, the median sale price decreased 1.3% from $700,000 to $691,000 month-on-month.
- At the end of October, the total number of properties available for sale across New Zealand was 25,602, down 3.7% (975 properties) from 26,577 year-on-year, and up 8.6% month-on-month.
- The total number of properties sold across New Zealand in October 2023 increased 8.0% year-on-year to 5,619 and decreased 2.5% month-on-month.
- Nationally, new listings decreased 2.6%, from 9,289 listings in October 2022 to 9,529 listings in October 2023, and increased 21.9% month-on-month.
- Days to sell have decreased by 3 days for October 2023 month-on-month and decreased 7 days year-on-year.
- The REINZ House Price Index (HPI) for New Zealand showed an annual decrease of 2.5% in the value of residential property nationwide.
- Four of the sixteen regions had positive year-on-year median price movements, the largest being Canterbury with +3.2%.
- Tasman had the largest regional median price change, increasing 5.8% month-on-month.
- Northland had the biggest decrease in days to sell, reducing 23 days compared to September 2023, and the largest number of properties sold, increasing by 36.1% year-on-year.
More information on activity by region can be found in the regional commentaries visit the REINZ website.
Four of the sixteen regions had positive year-on-year median price movements, the largest being Canterbury with +3.2%.
Seven regions had positive month-on-month movements, with Tasman leading the way with a 5.8% increase.
Auckland has recorded 18 consecutive months of year-on-year median price decreases for the first time since records began.
Wellington has recorded 17 consecutive months of year-on-year median price decreases for the first time since records began.
There were no record median prices at the regional level this month.
There was one record median price at the TA level this month – Gore District with a median price of $440,000 which beat the prior record of $435,000 set in November 2022.
- 82% of all TAs have had no median record price in any of the past 12 months.
- Queenstown-Lakes District and Westland District have had four consecutive months of year-on-year increases, the most of all TA’s.
This month, Nelson experienced its second-lowest sales count for a month ever, with the lowest being the lockdown impacted April 2020.
In terms of the month of October, this October saw the lowest sales count in
- Nelson and Wellington since records began
- Manawatu-Whanganui since 2010
- Gisborne since 2011
Median Days to Sell
Auckland had its lowest Days to Sell since January 2022
Hawke’s Bay and New Zealand had its lowest Days to Sell since March 2022
In terms of the month of October, October 2023 had the lowest median Days to Sell in Auckland since 2020
In terms of the month of October, October 2023 had the highest median Days to Sell in:
- Southland since 2000
- Nelson and Tasman since 2008
- Gisborne and Taranaki since 2013
- West Coast since 2018
Eight of 16 regions have had a decrease in inventory in October 2023 compared to one year prior.
Gisborne and Wellington have had an extended period where their inventory is 30% or more below the inventory of the year prior
Conversely, Nelson and Taranaki have had year-on-year increases in inventory since November 2021.
Ten of the 16 regions had a year-on-year increase in listings.
Marlborough has had four months in a row of year-on-year increases in listings whereas Auckland has seen three months in a row of increased year-on-year listings.
Nationally, 14.7% (714) of properties were sold at auction in October 2023, compared to 14.9% (837) in September 2023.
New Zealand excluding Auckland saw 9.6% of properties (347) sell by auction compared to 8.8% (331) the month prior.
Auckland Region saw 367 properties sold by auction for the month of October compared to October 2022. That is 51.4% of the total auction sales for October and the region with the most sales.
House Price Index (HPI)
No regional HPI records this month.
Both Canterbury and Otago had year-on-year HPI increases this month. Canterbury is now 6.4% below its peak HPI and Otago is 4.0% behind its peak.
Canterbury is the top-ranked HPI year-on-year movement this month. Otago is second and Southland is third.
In terms of the 3 months ending HPI movement, Southland ranks first, Auckland second and Gisborne/Hawke’s Bay third.
More information on activity by region can be found in the regional commentaries visit the REINZ’s website.