We bring you the latest news from New Zealand’s property market, covering everything from prices to the economy.
Are house price increases slowing?
House prices in New Zealand have been rising rapidly in recent months. However, there are signs that this could be slowing.
The average home increased in value by 2.3% nationally over the past three-month period to the end of February, down from the 6.1% quarterly growth seen in January.
This represents an average annual increase of 22.9%, down from 26.8% per cent annual growth last month.
Auckland’s property prices have also decreased slightly, with the average price at $1.51m in February, down from $1.54m in January.
Experts predict that the market is now turning and there will slowly be a greater number of sellers than prospective buyers, meaning we could see it turn from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market.
This is thought to be partly due to buyers stalling because of rising interest rates and tighter borrowing conditions, including a reduction in the availability of low deposit mortgages.
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New Zealand opens its borders
At the beginning of this month, New Zealand opened its borders for the first time in almost 2 years. New Zealanders and eligible travellers from Australia no longer need to quarantine on arrival if fully vaccinated. The government will be opening the borders to international visitors in the coming months.
Once the borders have reopened to the rest of the world without the need to quarantine on arrival, this could change the course of New Zealand’s property market. There may be more demand for housing and rent could rise further, making the possibility of a property investment very appealing.
Long-haul travellers may even be starting to plan summer trips now in the hope that the self-isolation requirements will be scrapped by then.
Covid cases rise
Ironically, New Zealand has relaxed its border rules at a time when Omicron cases are rising. As of March 10, hospitalisations hit a record of 773 and daily cases also hit a record high earlier this month. It’s thought that the nation is coming to terms with accepting the virus.
New Zealand currently has one of the highest per capita daily infection rates in the world, according to Johns Hopkins University data. This could mean that, despite the phased reopening of its borders, the New Zealand economy could face turbulence in the months ahead.
Despite this, there is optimism that New Zealand’s high vaccination rate will mean that Omicron will peak soon. The return of tourism can then take place and help towards economic recovery.