House prices hit record high – but there’s a catch

by Duffie Osental09 Jun 2021

The national average asking price for a house hit a record high in May, but data shows that price growth is slowing. 

According to the latest Trade Me property price index, the median house price in New Zealand saw its largest year-on-year increase in May, growing by 17% to $820,950.

Read more: Housing market remains red-hot following new housing package

Gavin Lloyd, property sales director at Trade Me, said that every region saw an annual increase in average asking price, with nine regions reaching a new record: Auckland ($1,083,800), Bay of Plenty ($830,000), Canterbury ($552,750), Hawke’s Bay ($700,750), Manawatū/Whanganui ($552,700), Nelson/Tasman ($760,250), Southland ($430,650), Taranaki ($544,550), Waikato ($720,450), and Wellington ($857,950).

“New Zealand house prices continued their record-breaking streak, hitting an all-time high for the ninth consecutive month in May,” said Lloyd. “Our May data tells us that we are still very much in a sellers’ market and unfortunately for buyers unless we see an increase in stock or demand begin to ease off, the winter months look like they will be red hot for the property market.”

While prices continue to surge, recent data from Quotable Value (QV) found that property value growth in the three-month period to the end of May has decelerated for the first time since July 2020.

According to QV, the average value increased 8.8% nationally over the past three-month period to the end of May, down slightly from the 8.9% quarterly growth the country saw in April.

“This small reduction is particularly significant considering the QV house price index is a rolling average measure, which includes transactions from some of the most buoyant months earlier in the quarter,” said David Nagel, general manager at QV. “We can expect to see further reductions in the rate of growth as the impacts of the recent tax changes for investors and credit availability start to take effect.”

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