Real estate executive reacts to interest rate freeze

by Steve Randall23 Jun 2017
The national manager of Century 21 New Zealand has welcomed the Reserve Bank’s outlook that monetary policy is unlikely to change soon.

“News that the Official Cash Rate could be held at 1.75% for some time is good news for home owners, as are the Reserve Bank’s latest comments about the housing market,” said Geoff Barnett.

He said that lenders will without doubt increase mortgage rates in the next 12 months but holding the interest rate steady will help first home buyers to have confidence in making the move into homeownership and for existing buyers to upgrade.

In the RBNZ outlook, governor Graeme Wheeler noted that house prices have moderated, especially in Auckland, and that is projected to continue. However, he said the on-going imbalance between supply and demand poses a risk that they could pick up pace again.

Century 21’s Geoff Barnett said that is an opportunity for first home buyers this winter.

“We still have low interest rates while at the same time the market has normalised and is in fact a buyers’ market in some places. With one if not both of those factors likely to change in the medium-term, I’d be buying a house sooner rather than later,” he said.

He added that housing remains a good investment, fuelled by the strong economy. Century 21 is also growing, with more franchises expected to open this year.

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