Demand pushes house prices up

KAT PICKFORD
Last updated 07:51 13/06/2012
Houses
QV statistics showed the average Marlborough house price was $325,070 in May

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The value of Marlborough residential properties continued to slowly increase last month, statistics show.

The Real Estate Institute New Zealand and Quotable Values figures for May released yesterday, showed Marlborough house prices are up slightly compared to a year ago.

QV statistics showed the average Marlborough house price was $325,070 in May, a 1 per cent increase over the past three months and on par with the national average.

Nationwide residential property values were up 1 per cent over the past three months, up 3.9 per cent over the past year, and 2 per cent below the previous market peak of late 2007.

It is important to note REINZ and QV figures are different because they are calculated differently. REINZ calculates the median, or middle price of all the houses sold. So REINZ's lower values show more houses in the lower price bracket sold than at the top end of the market.

Harcourts Marlborough co-owner Aaron Davis said home owners are feeling more confident because house prices have stabilised and there are more people looking to buy in all price brackets.

"There is more confidence with money, the grape industry is looking up ... we are dealing with lots of multi-buyers because there are not as many properties on the market."

REINZ figures showed the median price of houses sold in Marlborough and Kaikoura last month was $302,500 up from $298,500, an increase of 2.4 per cent when compared with May 2011.

However, that is a 2.4 per cent decrease when compared with April when the median house price was $310,000.

Mr Davis said the decrease is probably because there was a decrease in the number of sales in the million-dollar market last month.

REINZ Chief Executive Helen O'Sullivan said that although May was usually the third busiest month of the year, sales volumes were surprisingly strong.

Most regions recorded increases in sales volume including Marlborough and Kaikoura where 84 homes were sold in May, up slightly from 82 compared with the same time last year, and up from 78 in April this year, according to REINZ.

"The increase is considerably stronger than normal seasonal trends would suggest," she said. "This is likely partly driven by good deals on interest rates during the month, and a desire by buyers to complete purchases before winter."

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- The Marlborough Express

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