Real estate boom in Hamilton's east
Hamilton's east is having its own mini real estate boom as families look to snap up a property in the heavily sought-after school zone.
Meanwhile, a shortage of houses on the market in Hamilton's northeast has resulted in more people wanting to buy in the area, than there are houses available.
Both Lodge and Harcourts have seen a lot of activity in both Hillcrest and Hamilton East in recent months – despite the numbers of new Waikato listings on the market in June being down 20 per cent on May.
Realestate.co.nz's June report showed new listings in the Waikato dropped from 836 in May to 673 in June – though they were still 14 per cent up on the same time last year.
Houses on average were also being sold quicker, going from 44 weeks in May to 37 weeks in June.
The managing director of Lodge Real Estate in Hamilton, Jeremy O'Rourke, said there was a "good deal of activity" in both Hillcrest and Hamilton East.
"In general things are turning over pretty well, but there seems to be a greater demand or urgency in those two markets at the moment then there normally is." While normally a good area for sales, things had "heightened" in recent months.
Harcourts Dinsdale manager Neil Lynn had also noticed increased activity in the area, with the "good areas" of Hillcrest attracting high sales prices recently.
"It's probably due to it being a reasonably nice suburb and it's perceived as having good schools around it."
Mr Lynn said school zoning was a strong driving force for families wanting to buy.
"People are prepared to sacrifice a bit as long as they can get in to a good school zone."
Mr Lynn said areas around Hamilton Boys' High School were also highly sought after – though good housing stock in the area was often quite limited.
Hillcrest High principal Kelvin Whiting said the suburb offered the entire package.
"By living in the area you are automatically in the situation where you can quite easily go from primary, intermediate, secondary and on to university if you so wish.
"So it's quite a nice little package really when you think about it," Mr Whiting said.
They were often approached by people outside the area wanting to attend the school because of its reputation, but living in the zone guaranteed a student a place.
Meanwhile, Hamilton's northeast is also much sought after, with both Lodge and Harcourts saying they needed more listings in the area.
There was a lot of demand for houses in the $400,000 to $450,000 bracket, but a shortage of stock to choose from.
David Cashmore of Bayleys said they had noticed new listings were down during June – but had no explanation why.
"In my opinion it's a good time to come in to the market because right now it's active, now it's positive and now there's a shortage of stock.
"In spring that might not be the case, short of crystal-ball gazing."
- Additional reporting Elton Smallman
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