PHOTO: CoreLogic Head of Research Nick Goodall

This month we delve into a bit of detail with sales volumes and property values before pondering a busy end to the year for the Reserve Bank.

It’s that time of year again – the clocks have gone forward, the mornings are lighter, days are warmer and The Warehouse is full of Christmas goods.  And looking at the property market, we can begin to see who might be looking forward to a good Christmas this year.
This week sees the release of Nick Goodall’s October Market Commentary, which discusses the mixed market we are seeing – a small lift in our House Price Index across the country, with strong growth in 15 of the 18 main areas – especially down south.  However, we are also seeing a different picture when it comes to sales volumes with a slight overall drop across the country masking strong growth in sales volumes in Auckland at 2.7% compared to the sale three months last year, with Tauranga pushing past 7% and Hamilton surging to 10.8% growth!  However Wellington price growth is limited and sales volumes have fallen – is it the end of the boom for Wellington?
As a backdrop to all this, we are seeing record low interest rates – with the top banks now offering 3.45% on 2 year fixed rates and both BNZ and Kiwibank offering 3.99% for five years fixed, firmly indicating that the banks believe low interest rates are here to stay for several years.
With movers remaining relatively quiet, investors are now up to 25% of sales, with First Home Buyers up to 24%.  Despite the increased regulations on investors, and claims of landlords selling up, it seems plenty are still investing, and First Home Buyers are taking advantage of KiwiSaver.