The lastest, and generally dubious, monthly real estate trade spriking of 'asking prices' is out today from realestate.co.nz.
Apparently asking prices are rising and the national average asking price is now above $500,000 for the first time.
This is all driven by Auckland average asking prices which are said to now exceed $760,000.
Although it does separate out the changing balance of houses, apartments and lifestyle blocks, its headline totals mixes them together.
But there is no mention of within-region shifts, and no mention of the changing balance of house size/bathrooms/bedrooms.
Consequently the data released can only give a very superficial analysis of how the housing markets are changing.
The best you can say is that asking prices are rising faster in regions that have low stocks of houses for sale - and that would hardly be a surprise to most readers. But the change of inventory levels seems to have little influence as the table below shows - it is the absolute level that drives prices higher.
The other take-away seems to be that 'asking price' changes appear to have little correlation to actual sales price median changes. We will need to wait about ten days to get the February REINZ data, but the year-on-year change data for the prior month reinforces the caution you should have when assessing property website 'asking price' data.
Only at the national level is there any semblance of correlation.
|Av Asking price||Inventory weeks||REINZ Sales price*|
|% y-on-y change||# y-on-y change||% y-on-y change|
|Northland||+0.4 / -0.4||+5.4||+7.7|
|Auckland||+12.9 / +13.5||-9.2||+16.0|
|Coromandel||+10.0 / +13.6||-90.3|
|Waikato||+2.2 / +3.2||-4.3||-1.8|
|Bay of Plenty||+1.6 / +4.0||-12.7||-1.8|
|Gisborne||+7.3 / +4.6||+12.0||+3.1|
|Hawkes Bay||+1.2 / +8.3||+7.1||+3.1|
|Central North Island||-7.0 / -9.1||-61.7|
|Taranaki||+14.3 / +16.5||+2.8||+1.7|
|Manawatu/Wanganui||+1.9 / +6.0||+8.1||+0.9|
|Wairarapa||-0.4 / +2.4||-23.8||-3.7|
|Wellington||-1.0 / -0.2||-3.7||+6.2|
|Nelson/Tasman||+0.7 / +1.3||-4.5||-7.4|
|Marlborough||-11.7 / -7.8||-4.3||-7.4|
|West Coast||-12.0 / -8.6||-33.4|
|Canterbury||+2.6 / +3.5||+6.3||+8.1|
|Central Otago Lakes||-7.0 / -11.5||+3.1||+11.2|
|Otago||+0.5 / +2.7||-2.9||-3.8|
|Southland||-1.9 / +3.4||-8.6||+4.1|
|New Zealand||+5.9 / +6.9||-5.9||+6.0|
Average apartment asking prices are up +24% from the same month a year ago, a trend that seem to be rising. A mix of larger units coming on to the market at the higher end may be driving this more than like-for-like price rises. In Tauranga the rise is even more impressive, up +34%. However that market shows considerable volatility.
In Wellington, the year-on-year rise is just over +1% and over the past year changes have been very modest.
In Christchurch, the average asking prices in the apartment market is also volitile as units across the range come back on to the market in relatively low volumes.
Canterbury lifestyle block asking prices have actually fallen from the same month a year ago, down -1.3%. Recent fire and drought conditions however may be inhibiting transactions as there are +14% more listings than for the same month a year ago. Listing volumes have jumped since July 2014.