A property expert says the Reserve Bank's loan-to-value restriction imposed on banks 15 months ago goes some way towards explaining why house prices in Auckland are at an all-time high.
Auckland agency Barfoot and Thompson said the median sale price had risen by $90,000 in just one year.
It said December was the busiest December in a decade, with sales up 28.5 percent on the previous year.
Emeritus professor of property studies at Massey University Bob Hargreaves said that was because first-home buyers had been deterred from entering the market.
"We don't have as many transactions in the lower part of the market and that of course has pushed up the median price over that period so it will take a lot of first home buyers out of the market."
"You get more expensive housing transacting."
He said it would mean there was more expensive housing transacting, but was not all-together compensated by the fact there were investors buying cheaper housing.