Apartments feature in property figures

Increased sales of managed apartments was the highlight of the Queenstown property market in December, according to the latest sales report by the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand.

Sales of managed apartments accounted for 25% of the market and were mostly one and two bedroom apartments under $400,000.

This reflected stronger demand from buyers with discretionary funds looking for an investment, but also the flexibility to use them for a few weeks every year, institute Queenstown spokesman Kelvin Collins said.

The median sale price reduced to $517,500, pulled down by the under-$400,000 managed apartment segment.

There were 53 residential property sales in December, which was the same volume as in the previous month.

Mr Collins said there were eight sales of property selling for more than $1 million.

''Demand in this sector of the market has continued to be good, especially for property with an X-factor.''

Section sales were quiet, with only three sales compared to 13 the previous month.

Residential dwelling and apartment sales totalled 52 in December compared with 40 in November.

''[However] agents are reporting lower listings than last summer,'' he said.

Rental property also remains tight, with very few vacant properties and strong demand resulting in a lift in rents of about 10% during the year.