Rural property sales increase

The top of the south rural property market ended last year on a high, with sales volumes increasing for the third year in a row.

According to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand there were 110 rural property sales in Marlborough and Nelson last month.

Although the institute does not separate Marlborough and Nelson data, its rural market spokesman Brian Peacocke said 26 of the sales were in Marlborough.

There were five horticultural, which includes viticultural, one finishing, two grazing, seven special (unspecified), and nine lifestyle property sales in Marlborough.

Farm sales increased in the top of the south, with 32 sold in December, up from 18 in December 2011, and 11 in 2010. Of the 32 farms, there were two finishing blocks, two forestry blocks, 12 grazing blocks, eight horticultural blocks and eight special blocks. No dairy farms sold in December.

The median price per hectare of horticultural blocks, which include vineyards, was $149,011, up 129 per cent from $64,994 in December 2011, and up 17 per cent from $127,101 in 2010.

The value of the grazing lots was $17,915 in December, down from $24,890 in December 2011.

The median price of finishing blocks increased, while special and forestry block values were down.

Likewise there was an increase in lifestyle block sales, with 78 sold in Marlborough and Nelson in December 2011, compared with 60 in December 2011, and 57 in 2010.

The median cost of lifestyle blocks sold was $505,750, down 11 per cent from $570,000 compared with the same time in 2011, and up 2 per cent from $495,000 in December 2010.

Bayleys Marlborough rural specialist Andy Poswillo said there were usually low numbers of vineyards on the market at this time of year.

However there had been lots of interest in planted vineyards and bare land with development potential from existing grape growers, wine businesses and off-farm investors.

The Marlborough Express