12 May 2017

April's wild weather stalls housing market

1:47 pm on 12 May 2017

The housing market stalled last month as bad weather, holidays and tight bank lending slowed the rise in prices.

auckland housing

Photo: 123RF

After record high prices throughout the country in March, for April the Real Estate Institute's (REINZ) national median price rose a seasonally-adjusted 1 percent on the month before, to $540,000.

Median prices hit record levels in Waikato (up 22.3 percent year-on-year to $489,200), Wellington (up 18.8 percent year-on-year to $537,000) and Otago (up 12.7 percent year-on-year to $381,000).

The Auckland market showed further cooling, with the median price down nearly 6 percent on March, and the annual growth rate easing to 3 percent. This suggested that Auckland was further through the property market cycle than the rest of the country, a statement from REINZ said.

The institute's chief executive, Bindi Norwell, said the housing market is relatively stable and positive, despite tougher lending restrictions and a lack of supply.

"The overall tone of the market remains broadly positive, with price and sales volume drops broadly typical in April," she said.

The number of sales last month fell, which is blamed on wet weather, school holidays and public holidays, but they were also down nearly a third on a year ago.