Auckland average house price drops 3.1% in June, sales fall, Barfoot says

The realtor said prices "invariably" fall in the winter months.

Auckland's average house price fell in June from May and the number of sales also declined to the lowest for a June month in seven years, says realtor Barfoot & Thompson.

There were 855 sales in June, down from 886 in May and from 1,168 in June 2016, Barfoot said in a statement. The average price fell 3.1 percent to $913,606 and the median price slipped 0.7 percent to $840,000.

The realtor said prices "invariably" fall in the winter months and while monthly sales have fallen for nine straight months, weighing on prices, the downturn hadn't turned into a slump. "What is positive for the market is that prices are edging down rather than falling rapidly, and current prices still represent a good outcome for vendors," Barfoot managing director Peter Thompson said.

The Barfoot figures follow Real Estate Institute data last month that showed Auckland's median price rose an annual 5 percent to $865,000 in May, a slowdown from the year-earlier pace of 8.4 percent, while the volume of sales fell 28 percent. The number of properties available for sale in New Zealand's biggest city jumped 47 percent. Signs of a softening of demand in Auckland follows loan-to-value restrictions imposed by the Reserve Bank, which has hampered some property investors from borrowing more to increase their portfolio.

Barfoot said new listings were 1,570 in June, down from 1,734 in May and from 1,770 in June 2016. Total month-end listings were little changed from the previous month at 4,298.

The realtor said it had 291 sales, or 34 percent of the total, for properties for more than $1 million. Sales of properties under $750,000 made up 41 percent of the total, it said. Barfoot had previously provided sales below $500,000 as its measure of the lower-priced end of the market but bumped that up to $750,000 in the latest release.

(BusinessDesk)

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