REINZ: New Zealand Home Sales Drop 20% in August

For sale sign in front of a houseResidential property sales dropped significantly in New Zealand, as no region posted growth in August, according to the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ).

The trend caused a 20% decline compared to the same year in 2016, or 1,472 fewer properties. A sales drop only took place during three months in the last seven years. It also took sellers a longer time to offload properties.

Boosting Sales

Property listings only took only one month before going off the market in August 2016. A year after that, sellers had to wait 37 days to complete a transaction. The number of days for homes for sale indicates a weak underlying demand.

Still, the national median home price rose 8.2% to NZ$530,000 year over year. The increase in prices provides a good opportunity to unlock profits, but the challenge of doing so remains clear. While there is an apparent decline in demand, you should consider simple advertising to lure buyers. Screen print and other printing services, for instance, can help you promote a listing even for just a short period of time.

Regional Decline

An increase in median home prices, particularly in Auckland, partly reflected strong demand due to an increase in population. REINZ CEO Bindi Norwell said that stricter lending standards served as another factor. Buyers have faced a tough time in securing funds from banks.

Southland posted the biggest drop in sales volume in August with a 37.3% decline, followed by a 29.4% drop in Northland. Home sales in Taranaki fell 25.9%, while those in Waikato and Auckland fell 25% and 21.5%.

A drop in home sales indicated that some owners may be holding on to their properties, either waiting for the right time or further price growth. The situation also meant that it was a seller’s market in August.