There was just a hint of spring in the latest figures from property website Realestate.co.nz with new listings rising in September compared to August but remaining well down on September last year.
Realestate.co.nz received 9283 new residential listings in September, up 6% compared to August but down 12% compared to September 2016.
In Auckland there was only a slight change in the number of new listings between August and September, but they were down 17% compared to September last year.
A similar trend was evident in the Waikato and Bay of Plenty, which posted small rises in the number of new listings compared to August, but they remained down 12% and 22% respectively compared to September 2016.
In the Wellington region new listings were down 14% compared to last year and in Queenstown-Lakes they were down a whopping 21%, although that is in a fairly small market where the figures can be volatile.
Christchurch went against the trend with 1445 new listings in September compared to 1173 in August and 1390 in September last year, putting new listings up 11% compared to a year ago..
In Otago the number of new listings was almost unchanged compared to a year ago.
There was also a slight rise in the national average asking price of newly listed properties, which increased from $608,315 in August to $619,004 in September but remained below the February peak of $648,762.
In Auckland the average asking price rose from $915,325 in August to $943,885 in September, but was also down from February's peak of $978,652.
Most regions followed a similar trend although there were significant falls in average asking prices in Taranaki, the West Coast and Central Otago-Lakes, while prices were almost flat in Manawatu/Whanganui.
In Taranaki the average asking price dropped from $392,462 in August to $356,570 in September, which was also well down from the February peak of $403,596.
In Central Otago-Lakes the average asking price dropped from $873,314 in August to $807,709 in September, which was the lowest it has been in the last 12 months.
The overall figures suggest the usual spring lift in the residential property market is on the way, although activity is likely to remain at lower levels than previous years and the advantage is likely to remain with buyers rather then vendors, because of the elevated levels of stock in the market, which gives buyers more choice and makes them less likely to agree to an above market price to secure the property they want.
So vendors will still need to ensure their properties are realistically priced to achieve a sale in a reasonable timeframe.
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