House prices extend record high

CATHERINE HARRIS
Last updated 09:56 09/11/2012
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HOME PRICE: Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch house price increases push national average to new record.

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New property data out today confirms strong house sales across the country last month.

The Real Estate Institute (REINZ) says sales volumes shot up 32.6 per cent to 6640 in October compared with the same time last year. On a seasonally adjusted basis they were up just under 25 per cent and up 5.7 per cent on the previous month.

However, while turnover was struggling to keep pace with demand price trends were mixed outside the major cities.

Nationally the median house price hit a new record of $380,000, up 2.4 per cent on the previous month and 5.8 per cent on a year ago.

REINZ's figures follow yesterday's data from Quotable Value whose index hit a new national peak last month of $420,048, up 5.7 per cent on a year ago. QV also noted that buyers were keen but were being held back by a lack of listings earlier in the spring.

REINZ chief executive Helen O'Sullivan said the market was split between Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, where prices were rising, and the rest of the country.

The usual springtime lift in listings was not keeping up with demand, and had brought the average number of days taken to sell a property down a day to 32 days.

All regions recorded a rise in turnover compared with October last year. Leading the way was Central Otago Lakes, which recorded an increase of 54 per cent, followed by Northland (52 per cent) and Hawkes Bay (47 per cent).

In the robust Auckland market, the median house price moved up 2.9 per cent on September and 14 per cent compared with the previous year, to a record $530,000. Its most active areas were close to the city centre, the northern suburbs and eastern beaches, REINZ said.

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- BusinessDay.co.nz

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