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Lifestyle Blocks Spice Up Rural Property Market

18 May 2007

A surge in lifestyle property prices dominated the latest month's rural property market statistics, the Real Estate Institute said today.
Taking a lead from the strong residential property market, the national median price for Lifestyle properties jumped $20,000 from $450,000 in March to $470,000, up 13.25 per cent on the April 2006 national median of $415,000.

The residential property median for the same period increased by 14.42 per cent.

Especially strong prices in Auckland and Waikato contributed to the national increase, but prices throughout the country were firm, REINZ National President Murray Cleland said today.

The Auckland region lifestyle median price was up from $749,500 to $855,000 in April which is a 31.5 per cent increase over the April 2006 Auckland lifestyle median price of $650,000.

Waikato was up similarly from $440,000 in March to $479,250 in April, a 26.6 per cent increase on the April 2006 median for the region of $378,500.

"Lifestyle blocks are proving to be a good investment delivering people the best of both worlds, country living with good upside driven by the demand for residential property. Its interesting to note that the lifestyle market mirrors the national residential market very closely which means owners aren’t  losing out on the investment benefits of residential property even though they chose to go out of the main centres."

The national farm median price was a little lower in April at $1,125,000 compared with $1,212,500 in March which was due mainly to heavy sales of more expensive dairy units last month, according to Mr Cleland.

"But on a year to year basis, despite the high exchange rate and rising costs on the other side of the farm gate, farm values continue to rise."

The latest median of $1,125,000 in April is 7.1 per cent higher than the median of $1,050,000 in April 2006.

Farm sales in April were lower, at 187 compared with 234 in the busier March 2007 period, but comparable with the April 2006 sales of 177.

With dairy farm sales down from 56 in March to 35, the dairy median eased back from $3,275,000 in March to $2,425,000, similar to the April 2006 dairying median price of $2,461,500.

Finishing property median prices eased from $1,500,000 in March to $1,060,000 in April, down also on the April 2006 median of $1,250,000. Demand for grazing properties remained and although sales fell from 98 in March to 73 in April, the median price was up from $950,203 in March to $1,125,000 in April, a 29.3 per cent rise over $870,000 median in April 2006.

Horticultural property prices were also firm, rising from the March median of $907,500 to $930,000 in April, compared with the April 2006 median of $867,500.

A rare sale of a South Island high country merino station also took place in April, at a price of $2,240,000.



Download Documents:

Rural Market Report April 2007.pdf  
Rural Market Report Stats April 2007.pdf