17 Oct 2015

Christchurch rents fall, but house prices up

3:29 pm on 17 October 2015

The Christchurch housing market is showing signs of cooling down, following several years of high rents and demand from buyers.

Christchurch housing.

Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

The trend is shown in the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's latest Housing and Construction Quarterly report.

Rents in greater Christchurch have fallen consistently for the last three quarters and are now 1.3 percent lower than in June 2014.

House values in the region continued to grow, but at a slower rate, and housing affordability has remained constant over the same period, the Ministry's Energy and Building Trends manager Peter Ellis said.

The number of residential building consents issued over the last three quarters had also fallen.

He said the ministry's forecasts suggested housing supply was likely to catch up with demand about mid-2017, slightly earlier than previously forecast.

Mr Ellis said while Christchurch still had a long way to go, there were now definite, clear signs that the market was heading in a more stable direction.