House prices reach new high

LIZ MCDONALD
Last updated 13:31 12/12/2013

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Christchurch house prices have hit another high, with the median (mid-point) price reaching $404,000 in November.

The price is just over 10 per cent higher than a year ago.

Valuation agency Quotable Value said this week Christchurch's average home value had risen 12.4 per cent in the past year and was now just over $450,000.

Across the Canterbury and Westland region, median prices rose 13 per cent to $389,750 in the past year, also a record and the seventh high this year.

The record were set despite more homes coming onto the market and listing taking longer to sell, according to the real Estate Institute which released the figures.

The institute's Canterbury spokesman, Tony McPherson, said a combination of the spring and completed earthquake repairs meant more owners were putting house up for sale.

Homes were selling in a median of 27 days. This was up from 24 days in October but still the fastest of any region.

October's restrictions on low-deposit lending had slowed inquiries from first home buyers, but investors and new arrivals to the region were filling any gaps, he said.

McPherson said the institute applauded the Government's relaxation this week on low deposit loans for new homes, saying any restriction on building boosted both prices and rents.

Outside of Christchurch the biggest annual median price rises in the region were 14.7 per cent in North Canterbury country, and 8.8 per cent in the Timaru district.

A total of 888 homes sold in Canterbury-Westland during November, about the same as in October, and 579 sold in Christchurch city.
 
Across New Zealand the median price was $425,000, with the Auckland region, Wellington and Waikato-Bay of Plenty also reaching new highs.

A quarter of all sales nationally, and 22 per cent in Canterbury-Westland, were at auction.

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- The Press

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