Auckland average house price rises 2.8% in May from April as sales, listings rise

The surge in Auckland house prices has ensured an increasing number of sales for $1 million-plus.

Auckland's average house price rose in May from April, while sales and new listings jumped although they are still below the levels of May 2016, says realtor Barfoot & Thompson.

There were 886 sales in May, up from 664 sales in April, which was the lowest for that month since 2008, Barfoot said. Sales were down 32 percent compared with May last year. The average price rose to $942,717, up 2.8 percent from April and up 7.8 percent from May 2016.

Last month the Reserve Bank said it would seek feedback on adding debt-to-income limits to its suite of macroprudential tools while saying it didn't actually plan to use them anytime soon because there are signs existing measures are already helping to slow house price inflation, which was running at an annual 8 percent in May, down from 14 percent in October. The central bank attributed the slowdown to existing restraints including loan-to-valuation ratios which have been in place since 2013 and were tightened last year.

New listings rose 34 percent to 1,734 in May from but were down from 1,905 in May 2016, Barfoot said. Total listings were 2 percent higher at 4,298, a gain of about 43 percent from the same month last year.

"With a sound number of new listings, total listings at their highest for the past five years and low sales, there was greater pressure on prices to fall than has been experienced for some years," said Barfoot managing director Peter Thompson.

The surge in Auckland house prices has ensured an increasing number of sales for $1 million-plus. In May, 341 properties, or 38.5 percent of the total, sold for more than $1 million, while 58, or 6.5 percent, sold for more than $2 million.

Those sold below $500,000 made up 4.5 percent of the total, or 40 properties.

(BusinessDesk)

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