5 Mar 2009

Realtor says Auckland market looking up

8:13 pm on 5 March 2009

An Auckland real estate company is citing a boost in listings and a better than expected February as a sign the city's housing market is on its way up again.

Barfoot and Thompson says the Auckland housing market showed signs of recovery in February.

It sold 559 houses, up 9% compared with sales in January. The average house price increased 3.5% to $512,536, compared with February last year.

The realtor says a combination of lower interest rates, awareness of the low number of residential building permits being granted, and general growth of the Auckland region are all contributing factors to what it calls a modest turnaround.

The realtor listed 1470 new homes in February, up more than 50% on January, although still down on the same time last year.

Barfoot and Thompson managing director Peter Thompson says though he remains cautious, he is more confident than two to three months ago.

Mr Thompson says the feedback he is getting from throughout New Zealand is there is a lot more activity in the market, even if it is not reflected in sales figures yet.

The national housing figures for February are due to be released at the beginning of next week.