5 Mar 2011

Impact of quake on property market yet to show

10:01 am on 5 March 2011

Auckland's largest real-estate firm says it could be months before it knows whether the earthquake is affecting buyer behaviour.

Barfoot and Thompson says sales volumes and prices rose in February and are now on par with levels experienced at the same time last year.

Managing director Peter Thompson says new sellers are reviving interest in the market and new listings are holding steady.

He says there have been some positive feelings in the market but the firm has to consider that the Canterbury earthquake may have an effect on that - though it's too early to tell what the impact will be.

Mr Thompson says the market could pick up with people from Christchurch moving to Auckland, or the quake could slow things down.

If there is an effect, he says, it will show within the next month or so, and in the rental market first.

Mr Thompson says the average weekly rent dropped by $14 to $402 in February, as the normal influx of people into Auckland over January eased.