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Figures released yesterday by the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ) show both Otago and Southland had substantial rises in median prices, up 58% and 30% respectively.
Excluding April 2020, Otago had the lowest April sales volumes since April 2008.
Dunedin reached a record median house price last month of $621,120, up 25.5% from $495,000 last year, but the number of properties sold in the city decreased 37% from March this year.
Dunedin’s REINZ regional commentator, Liz Nidd, said the decrease in the number of properties sold came as investors started to pull back from the market after Government announcements.
"First-home buyers have remained active in the market, now making up a larger portion of active buyers as they try to take advantage of the investor slowdown,’’ she said.
"Access to finance has continued to be an issue for those with lower levels of equity, resulting in more cash buyers at the upper end of the scale.’’
The next few months would be telling as to the depth of the effect the Government changes, Ms Nidd said.
The lack of stock is continuing to put pressure on housing in the Queenstown Lakes district.
Median house prices in the area reached $1.2 million last month, up 42.2% from $850,000 in April 2020.
Listing and buyer inquiries in the district were down following the Government announcements, REINZ regional commentator for Queenstown Lakes Gail Hudson said.
"Partially as a result of very restrictive lending, plus there is a regular seasonal slowdown that comes with winter.
"Buyer inquiries from Australia have increased slightly since the opening of the transtasman bubble has made the option of a move or holiday house in Queenstown more viable,” she said.
In Southland, median house prices rose from $307,000 in April last year to $402,000 last month.
The number of properties sold decreased 40.2% from March 2021.
The REINZ’s acting CEO, Wendy Alexander, said that was caused by first-home buyers and investors stepping back slightly after the Government announcement in late March, to take "a wait and see’’ approach as to how it might affect them.
The REINZ House Price Index for Southland increased 19.6% annually to a record 4156, showing that the underlying value of properties in the region was still increasing, Ms Alexander said.
"Moving forward, we expect the Southland market to stabilise further,” she said.