Waikato lifestyle blocks selling well

ALI TOCKER
Last updated 12:12 15/11/2012

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Lifestyle block sales are increasing in the Waikato for this time of year compared to the previous two years, while farm sales remain relatively steady, figures released today by the Real Estate Institute of NZ show.

A total of 194 Waikato lifestyle blocks sold in the three months ending October , compared to 149 in the same period last year and 109 in the same quarter in 2010.

This mirrors a national trend, with a total of 1378 lifestyle blocks sold in the October quarter this year, compared to 1197 in the same period last year and 1053 in the same period the year before.

However, in the Waikato, lifestyle block sales in the October 2012 quarter were down by 8 sales compared to the 202 sales September 2012 quarter.

‘‘The decrease in sales in October is more a reflection of the timing of sales at the start of spring rather than an indication of any particular trend,’’ REINZ rural market spokesman Brian Peacocke said.

The national median price for lifestyle blocks improved to $460,250 for the three months ending October 2012 - up $25,250 or 5.8 per cent on the three months to October 2011.

Meanwhile, 24 farms were sold in the Waikato in the October quarter this year, compared to 23 in the same period last year and 15 in the same period the year before.

Nationally, 256 farms sold in the October quarter this year, compared to 286 in the same period last year and 147 in the same period the year before.

Looking at the 12 months ending October 2012, however, farm sales were up 28.6 per cent to 1410, compared to the same period the previous year. 

‘‘The spring selling season is in full swing across the country with a considerable number of farms being marketed during October,’’ Peacocke said.

‘‘Based on the levels of activity in October we would expect a lift in sales in November as properties go unconditional,

‘‘Levels of listings are generally good, although several regions report insufficient stocks of good sheep and beef properties to meet buyer demand.  In contrast, some areas report higher stocks of dairy farms than current demand requires.’’ 

Grazing properties accounted for the largest number of farms sold nationally in the October quarter this year, with a 50 per cent share of the sales.  Finishing properties accounted for 16 per cent of sales over the three months, horticulture 14 per cent, dairy 5 per cent and special properties 5 per cent.

The median price per hectare for farms sold in the three months to October 2012 was $19,872 - a 5 per cent increase on the October quarter 2011.  

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The REINZ All Farm Price Index rose to 2,852.46 for the three months to October, an increase of 6 per cent on the same period the year before.

The index is designed to more accurately track price movements by adjusting for property-specific factors such as location, size and farm type, and macro-economic variables such as interest rates, exchange rates and commodity prices.  REINZ says the index is less influenced by the type of farms that happen to sell, providing an improved measure of underlying farm prices.

- Waikato Times

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