One apartment sold for just $35,000 while another with a declared reserve of just one dollar was passed in.

Anecdotal evidence about a rise in confidence in the real estate market is backed by May figures on house sales presented by the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ).

The latest edition of the REINZ Residential Market Confidence Report shows although there are predictions of tougher times ahead for the New Zealand economy, “some green shoots of confidence are starting to show”.

Sales volumes, listings, sales by auction and the sales-price-to-valuation ratio all saw an uplift during the month, and REINZ says the median price is as expected – up (significantly) in some places, flat in others and down in some regions.

“New Zealand isn’t just one market, so we expect this volatility to continue – particularly in areas that are heavily reliant on tourism and with no signs on the horizon that the borders will be opening for international holidaymakers any time soon,” the report notes. “With more expats coming home, we expect the top end of the market to hold up for now, but time will tell what impact this has on pricing overall.”

Bindi Norwell, chief executive at REINZ says May’s data revealed that the number of properties sold has progressively increased throughout the month and listings showed solid signs of starting to return to more normal levels.

As well as a “good lift” in the sales-price-to-valuation ratio, the percentage of auctions steadily increased throughout the month and is now just three percentage points behind the same time last year.

“Overall though, we are starting to see some positive signs, which will be of some comfort to the likes of the banks, economists and even consumers who have been holding off selling their property until they feel like there is more certainty in the market.


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