2 Aug 2016

Average NZ house price tops $600k

2:55 pm on 2 August 2016

The price of an average house in New Zealand is now more than $600,000, with prices growing at their fastest rate in nearly 13 years, according to new QV figures.

Sold sign outside a house in East Auckland

Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly

QV's national house index rose 14.1 percent in the year to July, with the national average price hitting a record high of $602,434, fuelled by low interest rates, strong investor activity and high immigration.

Hamilton, Queenstown Lakes and Tauranga experienced some of the highest growth, with Hamilton values rising 31.5 percent - twice as fast as Auckland, at 16 percent.

QV said prices in the country's biggest city have accelerated by 5 percent in the past three months, and the average Auckland price was just shy of the million dollar mark at $992,207.

QV national spokesperson Andrea Rush said there was little sign of the market reacting to planned new lending restrictions.

"So we're already starting to see that that may have some effect, but at the moment with the values over the past three months rising at a very rapid rate, there has been no impact as yet on values."

Ms Rush said the market was currently being driven by low interest rates, strong demand and too few properties.

Average prices are now 45.4 percent above the previous market peak of late 2007. Values in Auckland were now 81.6 percent higher than in 2007.

QV valuer James Wilson said the Auckland residential market was still dealing with a "severe shortage of listings, which could be due to fewer people listing their properties for sale during the wet winter months and strong value growth".

"This seasonal shortage of listings has further strengthened demand for good quality stock and homeowners appear to be favouring staying put for the time being and utilise the equity within their property to fund renovations rather than selling to upgrade."

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