Overall sales clearance rate of 43% at the latest apartment auctions - welcome to the new normal

The interior of the apartment in the Altitude building that sold for $337,000.

It was business as usual at the main Auckland apartment auctions this week, with a relatively low number of properties on offer and a sales clearance rate of 43%, which is pretty much the new normal.

At Barfoot & Thompson's CBD auction rooms three apartments were on offer. First up was a spacious (75 square metre) two bedroom apartment in the Sugar Tree Prima building on the Union Street ridge.

This is a new complex and several of its units have come up for resale recently with the vendors mostly investors who purchased off the plans.

There were multiple bidders for the unit, but they remained cautious and it was passed in for sale by negotiation.

The next unit offered fared better.

It was a two bedroom unit in the Federal building on the southern leg of Federal St. It sold under the hammer.

The final offering was a one bedroom unit in the Fiore 2 building on Hobson St.

There was just a single bidder for this property. Although he increased his bid several times as Barfoot's sales team negotiated back and forth between potential buyer and vendor, the final bid was not enough to get a sale across the line and it was also passed in.

Up at Ray White City Apartments, four units were on offer this week, starting with a studio unit under management contract to the Cintra serviced apartment hotel on Whitaker Place, which attracted multiple bidders and was sold under the hammer.

A 40 square metre, two bedroom unit in the Altitude building on Kingston St also attracted multiple bidders and was sold under the hammer.

A  studio unit in The Whitaker building on Whitaker Place, which has some maintenance issues, attracted multiple bids but was passed in with a top bid of $200,000.

The final unit on offer was a spacious (58 square metre) one bedroom unit with a car park in the Scene 2 building on Beach Rd.

This is a leasehold complex so a high price wasn't expected and bidding started at just $50,000. But with several bidders chasing it that soon rose to $125,000.

After discussions with the vendor the auctioneer declared the reserve of $155,000, but the top bidder wasn't prepared to budge and it was passed in.

Details of all the properties offered and the prices of those that sold, are available on our Residential Auction Results page.

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23 Comments

Apartments are a poor man's choice low capital gains going forward.

Aren't capital gains better low anyway, the same as income, isn't the goal to be an stay affordable?

Humm... Still can't see that sharp rise in apartment sales 'Tothepoint'? We're continuing to see incredibly low sales volumes at just 3 apartments with a pitiful 43% clearance rate.
Let's see you spin this one.

Hi CJ099,

Sorry - I don't do spin. (Happy to leave that to people like you, who have all the expertise.)

Just continuing to observe/monitor the soft market and let time pass........

Sorry 'Tothepoint' but you’ve been caught red handed spinning yet again. Unless you can supply us with actual evidence of those increased apartment sales? Not just assume that sales have 'risen sharply' just because the number of property listings has increased. Otherwise you;re just telling porky pies. :)

See here’s your recent comment:-

by tothepoint | Wed, 16/08/2017 - 12:15

Hi CJ099,

"You need to take into account that apartment sales have risen sharply in Auckland in recent months"

By the way, CJ099........ realestate.co.nz reports that for Auckland, apartment listings almost doubled in June 2017 (c/f May 2017). The increase went from 453 to a whopping 800.

A news release containing this information was put out by Vanessa Taylor, Head of Marketing at realestate.co.nz. She stated:

"We've been collecting property data for more than 10 years and never before have we seen so many apartments come onto the market in one month. With apartments typically being more affordable than houses, this has pulled down Auckland's total average asking price."

This is not the first time I have quoted the above statement on this website!!

CJ099 - if you kept abreast of what's going on in the Auckland property market, you would know about this effect. It's had a plenty of publicity and is pretty obvious anyway - even to casual observers.

I find your comments full of garbage 'tothepoint' as your still haven't provided any evidence to indicate that the Auckland market is doing well, which is what you normally prattle on about.

But anyway, this time you're talking about a dramatic increase in listings NOT actual apartment sales.

All that means is Investors are selling off their stock as quickly as possible, which we did point out some time back which will continue push down prices.

So like we've been pointing out all along for the past few months. The Auckland property market is heading south and will likely continue to do so over the next few years as it bottoms out to affordable levels.

And here's a quote from Realesate.co.nz spokesperson Vanessa Taylor

She said "The jump in stock available for sale in Auckland was good news for buyers".

"A cooling in demand and an increase in the number of properties sitting on the market indicates that potential buyers are taking their time and exploring all of their options,"

https://www.interest.co.nz/property/87430/number-homes-available-sale-au...

See it's not that hard to post a link is it, remember that when you next try to claim that the Auckland property market has improved its sales.

All your normal correction , it'll just stay at more listings the buys can handle so sellers will fight for buyers, this'll get a lot lot worse before it ever get to the stalemate stage and then its years boredom with prices flat and lowball offers, the real biggest problem is the dreamers thinking a election could change a decline of momentum once started ,people hold off, but then like past after a election things just carry on, because of the main reason that started it, I'm picking because people have some sort of hope, back door, why not I guess, if this is true the listing will go through the roof after the election and maybe some FHB,ers might be talked into buying a small % of the cheaper stock,

Here is the link to tothepoint's report:

http://www.realestate.co.nz/blog/news/nz-property-report-june-2017

They only have listings and asking prices though, no actual sales numbers.

I found the first graph interesting though, as it suggested that June 2017 listings experienced a surge over and above the normal seasonal / cyclical / organic growth. I don't know how accurate the graph is because they mentioned 800 listings but the graph says it's closer to 1,000; but say we just focus on the trend, you can see the red bars start with April listings followed by higher May listings, then lower June listings. This is true for data going back 6 years (so captured previous Election periods - definitely a non-factor) EXCEPT for June 2017, which suggests an unusual surge of apartment listings all at the same time.

It would have been good to see if these new listings translated into actual sales, but 43% clearance rates with very low sales numbers as this article stated is the new normal.

If this lower sales numbers but higher new listings trend continues, we are about to see an oversupply of apartments for sale in the market which can only push prices down even further.

"We've been collecting property data for more than 10 years and never before have we seen so many apartments come onto the market in one month. With apartments typically being more affordable than houses, this has pulled down Auckland's total average asking price."

More apartments less sales, " this has pulled down Auckland's total average asking price."

Would be a good idea to watch what's happening with the other gateway cities that also benefited from increased Asian property spending. Ease come easy go....

Financial Review article: House prices face China exodus risk, says former top US Federal Reserve economist

http://www.afr.com/real-estate/residential/house-prices-face-china-exodu...

Article quote: Nellie Liang, who recently visited Sydney and shared her thoughts on financial stability research with the Reserve Bank of Australia, told The Australian Financial Review policymakers were right to be "really concerned" about high house prices and household debt that was elevated by international standards.

Amid signs that Chinese businesses and people are being forced to move offshore money back home, the recently retired head of the Fed's financial stability division said a "trigger" for a real estate price collapse could be a reversal in international capital flows.

"The problem with high house prices and high household debt is it leads to unsustainable debt burdens if house prices fall," Dr Liang said in Washington.

Hi CJ099,

If one ignores the ratio of apartment/house for listings and sales (especially in places like Auckland and Wellington where there are many apartments) then the analysis/calculation of average price can soon mislead and deceive. I have emphasised this here on a number of occasions - as have other contributors.

Clearly, the issue about the ratio is important. It is also plain for everyone to see. So there's no point in people like CJ099 trying to make out otherwise - and getting themselves agitated in the process.

I could comment further but am again reminded off the time-honoured wisdom: "Arguing with a fool only makes you look like one".

You're the fool because you're incapable of providing any evidence 'tothepoint'.

I've provided plent of rational evidence to show what's actually happening in the market and all you can do is be abusive.

As CJ099 mentioned above, you have been quoted a mere TWO DAYS AGO saying:

---------------------------------------------------------------
by tothepoint | Wed, 16/08/2017 - 12:15

Hi CJ099,

"You need to take into account that apartment sales have risen sharply in Auckland in recent months"
-----------------------------------------------------------------

He was merely asking where you got your assumption that "apartment sales have risen sharply" from because that's clearly not the case. Is it so hard to say "I was wrong"?

If all along you meant to say that "apartment listings have risen sharply", as per the report that you referred to (but one I had to Google search) then you will find that everyone will agree with you on that.

I think you owe CJ099 an apology for calling him a fool. C'mon, you can do it!

Thanks Rich :)

"I could comment further but am again reminded off the time-honoured wisdom: "Arguing with a fool only makes you look like one"."

Obviously that's not reflexive, right?
You are surely telling CJ not to look like a fool by arguing with you, right?

TTP, i think you need to provide your math. You state it is plain for everyone to see so please let us all see your evidence that apartments is the driver behind auckland price reductions.

You're dancing around without quite delivering the killer stats - where is the data on apartment sales as a proportion of total sales? Higher listings does not automatically translate into higher sales.

The increase in proportion of sales would have to be quite exceptional to also push the median price down so much, it should be slightly more resilient than the mean to an increase in proportion of very cheap properties.

The great housing shortage myth ... rentals available on the North Shore are increasing quickly too.

There are more apartments under construction now, than have been built in the last 4.5 years!!!
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=1190...

Hi Green_mamba,

Yes, indeed, it's very noticeable that apartments have been shooting up like mushrooms.

And the apartment phenomenon underlines the very point of my comments above.

Yes, apartments will most definitely add to the already high levels of listings available to FHB's, which will put pressure on all dwelling prices, as the supply demand equation changes. There will be no property in Auckland immune to basic fact of market dynamics.

One month ago , it was all about New Zealand's most expensive apartment being sold.