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National property market turns in sellers' favour as new listings decline again

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Inventory of homes approaches long term average for first time since 2009

Auckland - Stocks of homes for sale in New Zealand have fallen sharply again, turning the national property market in favour of sellers.

Data released today in the NZ Property Report - a monthly report of housing market activity compiled by Realestate.co.nz - shows that the inventory of properties for sale across the country in June fell by a further 10% on the previous month following higher levels of sales and low numbers of new listings; an 18% drop overall from levels recorded at the same time last year.

The drop has resulted in the inventory of available properties on the New Zealand market approaching the long-term average - measured in terms of number of weeks that it would take to sell all the properties - for the first time in two years. The report shows inventory at 42.1 weeks, while the long-term average is 41 weeks.

Alistair Helm, CEO of Realestate.co.nz, says the shift in the market that was seen in Auckland last month is now being reflected in other main centres of Wellington and Otago, as well as the regional centres of Bay of Plenty, Queenstown, Waikato and Nelson.

"These are regions that have not been sellers' markets for a very long time. If things continue, it's likely that we will see a shortage of listings to meet buyer demand grow even further."

Mr Helm says that as housing stocks have fallen, the average asking price has remained steady at $415,053, up slightly from $414,308 last month, and down just 2% from earlier this year.

"Although we are now clearly heading towards a sellers' market in New Zealand, the steady asking price shows vendor confidence is strong, but not excessive.

Mr Helm says the figures in the June Property Report are similar to the trend that occurred when theproperty market responded to economic pressures following the onset of the global financial crisis in 2009.

"With the country is now delicately poised on the long term average of inventory, and ongoing shortage of available properties looks very possible," he says.

Realestate.co.nz is the country's most comprehensive property listing website profiling listings of licensed real estate agents with more than 117,000 real estate listings covering residential, commercial, business and farms for sale.

The latest issue of the NZ Property Report, covering June 2011, plus more analysis of the property market can be found on www.unconditional.co.nz, the news and information website for New Zealand real estate.

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