Sales volumes tell a tale - smaller regions winning

Published: Fri 25 Sep 2015 10:09 AM
Sales volumes tell a tale - smaller regions winning
The saying “What a difference a year makes” definitely rings true in many areas of the country in terms of house sale volumes. In the three months from June to August this year compared to the same three months in 2014, sales volumes have increased in almost all areas of New Zealand.
The biggest increase was seen in the Waikato where sales volumes increased by 96%, followed by Coromandel at 91%, Northland at 74% and Bay of Plenty at 64%.
“Coromandel is opening up as another suburb of Auckland with a two hour ferry ride to Auckland city. It is a great option for those looking for a quieter lifestyle but with the ability to reach Auckland if need be,” says Colleen Milne, Chief Executive of the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand.
“The Coromandel region is also a popular place for many to holiday and with low interest rates and property values increasing so much in other holiday hot spots, such as Northland, it is reasonable to suggest that many have decided to secure a holiday home in the Coromandel instead.”
Median sale prices in Coromandel have increased over this same period by 7% which is quite significant for the area. Northland has recorded the highest percentage change in median of 10%.
There has been plenty of interest in Waikato, Bay of Plenty and Northland for a while and REINZ data is indicating that other areas are beginning to also see gains. Hawkes Bay, Wairarapa, Central Otago Lakes, Otago and the West Coast have recorded gains in both sales volumes and median sales values.
“The sales volumes for the West Coast for August are up 260% compared to August last year. Although the numbers there are small compared to larger regions, the sales volumes are showing that a lot more people are buying in these smaller areas, so demand is spilling from out from the centres.”
The Wairarapa sales volumes have also increased going up 119% in August 2015 compared to the figures from August 2014. The attraction of the Wairarapa is that it is not too far from Wellington and it is a scenic area of New Zealand. These factors make it a drawcard for holidaymakers, retirees and some chose to commute to work in Wellington so they can have the lifestyle the Wairarapa offers. Says Milne, “I believe this is a growing trend where people are considering their lifestyle options long term and for many living outside the main centres is the answer.”
Across the board REINZ statistics usually record less activity over the winter months. “Typically we see the winter months to be the slower months but the difference in sales volumes in particular is quite significant this year. It will be interesting to see how the upcoming LVR changes and the implementation of the Bright-line test impact on our sales volume figures during spring,” says Milne.

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