The residential property market was little changed overall for a sixth month in May but Auckland property values edged up, QV Valuations says.
The post-earthquake Christchurch market continued to be fragmented, with strong demand in the less damaged northwestern suburbs.
Values were now 1.6 per cent lower than the same time last year, and 5.7 per cent below the market peak of late 2007, said Glenda Whitehead of QV Valuations.
The national market has been that way for six months after declining for six months before that.
Auckland values were currently 1.2 per cent above January, 0.3 per cent above the same time last year, and only 1.8 per cent below the market peak of late 2007, said Ms Whitehead.
''As has been the case for many months, there is a general lack of good quality well-presented properties on the market. When these come up they tend to sell quickly and for good prices, whereas properties with perceived flaws are slow to sell or need to discount in order to attract a buyer,'' Ms Whitehead said.
First home buyers may be active in the market again, perhaps because interest rates were low.
''Values in Hamilton remain 3.5 per cent below the same time last year, while in Tauranga values have levelled in recent months and are now 1.8 per cent below last year.''
In Wellington, values continued to decline slightly after rallying in late 2010 and early 2011, and as a result were 3.6 per cent below the same time last year.
In Dunedin, values had been more or less stable since the beginning of the year and were now 2.5 per cent below last year.
QV did not calculate a May index for Christchurch because of the low level of sales.
The average New Zealand sales price over the last three months was $404,057, down slightly from the $405,310 reported last month.
Whangarei values were down 5.5 per cent from a year ago, Gisborne down 5.2 per cent, Wanganui 5 per cent and Palmerston North 4.2 percent.
Napier was down 3.3 per cent, New Plymouth 3.4 per cent and Invercargill 3.4 percent, while in Rotorua it was 1.1 per cent, Hastings 1.4 per cent, Nelson 0.9 per cent and Queenstown Lakes 0.8 per cent.