South Island housing stock hits record low

File photo: Getty Images
File photo: Getty Images
Housing stock across Canterbury and a number of other parts of the South Island has hit a record 13-year low.

Data from shows the number of houses for sale in Canterbury for December was 1766, down 36.6 per cent for the same time last year.

The Nelson & Bays region had the lowest stock in the South Island compared to 2019 with a 49.2 per cent decrease to just 179 properties last month.

The West Coast and Marlborough decreased by 38 per cent and 49 per cent respectively.

The Central Otago/Lakes area avoided hitting a record low with just an 8.4 per cent decrease in stock since the same time last year.

The changes in housing stock from December 2019 to December this year. Photo:
The changes in housing stock from December 2019 to December this year. Photo:
Housing stock was down year-on-year in almost every region in New Zealand during December.

The national stock level was also at a record low.

Vanessa Taylor, spokeswoman for, said this is despite a year-on-year 19.2 per cent increase in new listings coming onto the market during December.

"There were 29.1 per cent less homes available for sale at the end of last month compared to December 2019, creating a significant mismatch in supply and demand.

"This is a long-term factor impacting the New Zealand market and the number of Kiwis returning from overseas, combined with low mortgage rates and lack of international travel, are only adding to the demand for property."

Taylor said the data suggests stock shortages will continue to pose challenges for Kiwi buyers at the start of 2021.

According to, property asking prices were up in Nelson Bays (2.7 per cent), Otago (2.1 per cent) and Central Otago/Lakes (9.9 per cent).

But down in Canterbury (-2.9 per cent), the West Coast (-7 per cent) and Southland (-9.6 per cent).

Asking prices in Marlborough were relatively unchanged with a 0.1 per cent decrease.

The national average asking price remained stable month-on-month in December with a marginal 0.3 per cent increase on November 2020.

However, it increased by 13.6 per cent when compared to December 2019.

The asking price for properties around New Zealand was $799,190 at the close of 2020, compared to $703,780 in December 2019.

"Asking prices nationally are now $95,410 more than the same time last year.

"Although this might be welcome news for sellers, it may not be time to celebrate just yet."











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