First Home Buyers
First home buyers are the most active in the Kiwi market with a continuing slide in new mortgage registrations for investors, according to the latest Property Institute/Valocity Regional Insights Report.
According to the figures, the national median sale price has remained very stable over the past year, currently sitting at $535,000.
First home buyers are the most active, with new mortgage registrations up 4.5% year on year, now reflecting 28.4% of the market. Meanwhile, the number of new mortgage registrations for investors has continued its negative trend, now down 2.5% annually, currently 16.9% of the market.
More people have been taking advantage of the low interest rates, with refinancers up 16%, now 23.6% of mortgage registrations.
Over half of New Zealand’s housing stock is currently valued at more than $600,000, while sales volumes remain down when compared to the same period last year.
- – Represents one of the strongest movers of NZ’s main centres, with an annual change of 9.2% of the median sale price, currently $638,750.
- – The only mortgage type with a positive annual movement is refinancers, up 3.5%, occupying a 24% share.
- – First home buyers remain the strongest when it comes to new mortgage registrations, representing 33.1%
- – Sales volume are down, as are the number of buyers, however with the annual change occurring it indicates Wellington is currently a very competitive market.
- – Continues to experience soft market conditions, with the median sale price currently $830,000, down 4.6% annually.
- – 60% of sales in Auckland currently fall between $600,000 and $1,000,000
- – First home buyers remain a strong contender in the market, with mortgage registrations up 7.9% annually, occupying a 27.1% share.
- – A median sale price of $540,000 with an annual change of -0.3%.
- – Refinancers continue to have the strongest movement with new mortgage registrations, up 37.7% year on year, occupying a 27.2% share.
- – First home buyers maintain a similar share of new mortgage registrations, currently at 27.3%.
- – The area maintains its relative affordability with over 50% of the housing stock valued below $600,000.
- – Continues to remain stable, with a median sale price of $450,000 up 2.3% when compared to the same time last year.
- – More than 50% of the housing stock is valued below $500,000 therefore is considered a relatively affordable region to buy in.
- – Continues to appeal to first home buyers, currently representing 31.6% of new mortgage registrations.
- – Also represents one of the stronger cities with the median sale price annual growth of 10.4%, currently $415,000.
- – The affordability of the region seems to appeal to first home buyers and investors, with new mortgage registration up over 12% for both buyer types.
- – More than 60% of the housing stock is valued at less than $500,000
Regions Home Prices Hit Record High
The average asking price for a home in the regions climbed 6.8 per cent on last year to hit $502,950, the websites Property Price Index has found.
“While the dip in the Auckland housing market has been making headlines, our property market is still very strong outside the overheated market in the Super City,” Trade Me head of property Nigel Jeffries said on Wednesday.
Strong double-digit growth in Hawke’s Bay, Whanganui and Marlborough had driven the increase in average prices, he said.
When the main cities of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch were included, average house prices rose 1.7 per cent in March comparted to a month earlier to hit $636,650.
In Auckland, the average asking price stalled for a second consecutive month in March, falling 0.7 per cent on last year to $912,500.
Property prices in Wellington climbed another 1.7 per higher than in February and 5.8 per higher than last year to reach a new record of $571,850.
However, “while prices in the provinces have been running hot, buyer demand across New Zealand appears to be cooling off”, Mr Jeffries said.
“The average number of views on property listings was down 1.6 per cent on March 2017, and this drop in demand may be an indication that buyers are retreating as growing prices push them out of the market.”
Bank Caution Vexes Prospective Home Buyers
Mr Barnett reckons there’s a pretty simple explanation: amid stagnating or even falling prices in part of Auckland, banks are tightening up their lending.
“Somebody that’s got a $120,000 deposit gets pre-approved for a $500,000 mortage; they go out and find a property to buy around the $600,000 mark; they go back to their lender, who’s pre-approved them, and then they get turned down.
“They get told, ‘well, actually we don’t value it to where you do. We think that we’ll loan you $480,000’.”
Loan Market director Bruce Patten, a mortgage broker, said he too had seen many deals fall through.
He said part of the problem was prospective home-buyers thinking pre-approved finance meant they could borrow up to that limit.
“People have to be really careful that they’re actually getting a pre-approval which has verified their documentation to the point of giving them finance.
“Some people don’t do that, and have this misunderstanding that they’re able to go ahead and buy without knowing that it’s 100 percent approval [that’s needed].”
With banks also carefully scrutinising the ability of a borrower to repay the loan, Mr Patten said this could seriously affect people with variable incomes.
Massey University banking studies centre head Claire Matthews said borrowers should get used to banks adopting a conservative line on lending.
“There is some evidence that the housing market in Auckland has started to cool, so the banks are going to say, hang on, we’re a little nervous here.
“We’re not expecting much growth, so let’s just take a little more cautious approach and not be so eager to lend as we might’ve been six or 12 months ago.”
Renting a typical kiwi house now costs $500 a week
February 2017 Renting a typical kiwi house now costs $500 a week
The median weekly rent for a typical New Zealand house hit $500 for the first time ever in February, meaning the annual cost for tenants is now $26,000 a year, according to the latest Trade Me Property Rental Price Index.
A typical rental property has 3-4 bedrooms, with these properties comprising nearly half of all those listed for rent on Trade Me Property.
Head of Trade Me Property Nigel Jeffries said these rents have lifted by over 30 per cent in the past five years. “Back in 2012, tenants were forking out $380 a week or just under $20,000 per annum for a place with three or four bedrooms. Fast-forward to today’s rental market and tenants are staring down the barrel at an additional $6,000 on their yearly bill,” he said.
The largest five-year increase in median weekly rent for 3-4 bedroom properties was in the Bay of Plenty, where it rose from $340 to $465 – adding $6,500 to the annual cost of renting. Auckland was not far behind, with a rise of $5,460 over five years.
The annual change for median weekly rent across all property types stayed largely unchanged in February.
“Tenants are paying $450 a week across the country for a rental property, and that figure has remained steady for the past three months. Even so, it’s a five per cent rise on a year ago, and they can expect to be paying an extra $20 a week,” Mr Jeffries said.
Thank you to all of our wonderful clients for their support over the past year.
We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and urge you to drive safely over the holiday period.
Our last day is Friday the 23rd of December and the Cambridge Office will re open on January 20th 2017.
Last but not least we would like top pay our respects to Mark Thomas from M.L Thomas & Associates. Mark passed away last week and is survived by his wife Faith and his children Nic, Frances and their partners. Mark was always helpful, pleasant to deal with, had a great sense of humour and was a proud family man. He was a very experienced valuer that was well respected by his peers and clients. Since I started in Cambridge in 2004 he has been a mentor to myself and a good friend. R.I P Mark.
Matamata Racing Club
|5||2:50 pm||Rating 65 Benchmark* 2000m – $7,000||2.20.27||Open /Close|
($4,375, $1,400, $700, $350, $175)
|5||Mr Ink||Emily Farr (A)||Karen Nicholson||$7.10||$2.60|
|Owners: B R Levings Breeder: B R Levings Sire: ISTIDAAD (USA) 1992 Dam: SHARPIN (NZ) 2001|
|10||Martini Lass||Darren Danis (A)||Wayne Hillis||$2.90||1.5L|
|Owners: G & Mrs S Bluett & J F Marks Breeder: G & Mrs S Bluett & J F Marks Sire: LIBRETTIST (USA) 2002 Dam: ARTEMESIA (NZ) 2000|
|2||Cruiseo||Sam Weatherley (A)||Ernie Griffiths||$3.10||3.3L|
|Owners: R & E Griffiths, T, K & K Flooks Breeder: Miss T Flooks Sire: ZED (NZ) 2002 Dam: IT’S ALL ABOUT HER (AUS) 2001|
|Other: 3-Jem Runner(3.8L), 1-So Keep Em(5.1L), 6-Rocket Queen(10.1L), 4-Kilmac(17.1L), 11-Miss Serendipity(17.2L), 9-Running Scared(22.3L), 8-Cabaret(53.0L) Scratched: Secretary Of State (IRE)|
Housing Going Nuts
“The housing market is going nuts, the last thing it needs now is more stimulus,” said Stephen Toplis, head of research at Bank of New Zealand in Wellington. “This is nightmare country for the RBNZ – a soaring currency accompanied by soaring house prices and soaring household debt. The bank is damned if it does, damned if it doesn’t.”
Consumer prices rose 0.4 percent in the first quarter from a year earlier – the sixth straight quarter inflation was less than 1 percent. Further damping prices, New Zealand’s trade-weighted currency index this week rose to a five-month high as investors reduced bets that the U.S. Federal Reserve will raise rates before September.
Wheeler lowered the cash rate in March and signaled that one further reduction would likely be needed to ensure future average inflation settled near 2 percent, a view he repeated in April. In May, he said the central bank was “seriously looking” at additional lending restrictions to help curb the housing boom.
“For the RBNZ to be noting financial stability concerns from housing at the same time as cutting would be contradictory to say the least,” said Cameron Bagrie, chief economist at ANZ Bank New Zealand in Wellington, who expects no change tomorrow. “We don’t believe the economy needs additional stimulus right here.”
An Auckland property firm says it now advises all investors to test houses for methamphetamine contamination before bidding at auction or going unconditional on a sale.
Housing New Zealand said yesterday that people who contaminated state houses by using methamphetamine would be caught by a new testing regime, and held liable for the cost of damages.
Wendell Property Management, which manages 600 rental homes, said about a third of the houses tested showed some level of contamination, though not all were above the Ministry of Health guideline.
General manager Ashley Giles said a conditional clause in contracts allowing for meth testing was now fairly standard.
“There’s only one instance where I’ve had a property owner put an offer in on a property and the vendor actually turned it down subject to that meth test so he wasn’t happy with that as a condition,”
“So that was a warning sign to that owner to kind of stay clear of that property.
Housing New Zealand chief operating officer Paul Commons said that under the new pilot programme in Auckland, every state house would be tested for meth before being re-let.
The drug was damaging not just houses and the public purse – but families in need, he said.
“So any house we sell, any house we buy, we check routinely and now in Auckland we’re piloting a process where any house we let we test it thoroughly so we’ll be increasing this all the time to ensure we’re not putting families in harm’s way.”
The Tenancy Tribunal recently ordered two former state house tenants to pay $54,000 dollars to clean up homes contaminated by meth use.
Mr Commons said Housing New Zealand would also involve the Police and Child Youth and Family when it identified tenants who had contaminated houses.
Multi-million dollar development for Cambridge
Details of a multi-million dollar development, one of Cambridge’s biggest, have been released.
Lakewood Cambridge is set to straddle 3ha of bare land off Queen St and overlook Lake Te Ko Utu.
It has been designed, say the developers, to complement Cambridge’s look – to more effectively connect the ‘hidden’ lake with the town.
Construction work is expected to start later this year, with completion projected to be around a year later.
Ben Jones, development manager with the Greenstone Group, Lakewood’s project and development managers, said design work had been undertaken by Auckland-based Ignite Architects.
Each of the buildings would reflect Cambridge’s heritage, he said, with different materials used on each block to reference various parts of the town’s history.
“Character bricks will mimic the town hall, and wooden barn styled buildings will link to Cambridge’s strong equestrian heritage.
“It will fit well with Cambridge. The over-arching development strategy is to create an attractive mixed-used destination that links the ‘hidden’ lake and reserve with Cambridge’s character town.”
Jones said the development would make the most of Cambridge’s natural amenities, heritage town appeal, forecast regional growth and supplementary destination attractions, such as the Avantidrome, Lake Karapiro and Hobbiton.
Bringing Lakewood to fruition will be the Trig Group, an award-winning Hamilton-based family business known for developments such as Rototuna Village.
Trig directors Graeme Matangi and Gary Ilton said Lakewood was the largest development the company had taken on, and was probably one of the largest ever done in Cambridge.
They said the Waipa District Council had been very supportive and easy to deal with throughout.
Waipa District Mayor Jim Mylchreest believes Lakewood will be good for Cambridge.
“Council has taken a very strong interest in this development because we want what’s best for Cambridge long-term.
“It’s about rolling out the red carpet, not the red tape,” he said.
Equally supportive was Cambridge Chamber of Commerce chief executive, Tania Witheford.
She said the development would embrace a Cambridge asset – Lake te Ko Utu – and added: “It will help meet growing demand for retail and commercial space as well as car parking and accommodation. The key will be to ensure there is exceptional connection to the existing centre and where possible to encourage business that complements our unique offering.”
Lakewood has been strategically crafted around research findings by economic demographers Property Economics, who did a comprehensive audit of Cambridge’s existing retail and commercial property sector, and identified significant “shopping leakage”.
Property Economics found an average 57 per cent of Cambridge residents’ total shopping spend went outside the town, and Cambridge was short of almost 10,000 square metres of retail space.
“As a mixed-use development, the aim was to align it with what already works well in town, and target retailers who currently don’t have a presence,” Jones said.
“We have been targeting specific retailers for the development – areas identified as having high retail leakage include fashion (clothing, footwear, personal accessories), recreational goods, furniture/textiles (floor coverings, housewares), food and beverage, and in what is called large format retail – bigger stores such as paint shops or automotive suppliers.”
Two larger buildings are earmarked for large format retail, while smaller street level retail spaces will have views overlooking Lake Te Ko Utu, and the landscaped carpark area.
Two heritage-designed blocks earmarked for street level retail, called Lakewood Lodge and Lakewood Pavilions, are to feature a motel and apartments on the upper levels overlooking the lake. A boulevard along its northern façade will connect with the lake reserve and public walking tracks.
A playground area will be positioned close to Cambridge’s historic ‘kissing gate – which will remain where it is.
The gate is historically so-called because of the way it just ‘kissed’ the fence as it swung around. The gates were purchased from NZ Rail in 1981 and donated to the Cambridge Historical Society.
All the residential accommodation will be double-glazed, and ground floor retailers will open onto a spacious public seating area.
The centrepiece of the development will be the food and beverage building, named The Stables. As a focal point, this will dovetail with the character of Cambridge, and will feature a high vaulted ceiling.
There will also be office space provided, some of it above a proposed 24-hour medical centre and pharmacy, with space allocated for childcare, and a gymnasium.
Jones said the site’s strategic and geographical advantages included its proximity to the town centre, State Highway One and the Waikato Expressway. It also had flat contours, dual entrances and complementary adjacent businesses.
Waikato’s best towns to buy in
Harcourts managing director for Otorohanga, Te Awamutu and Te Kuiti, Ken McGrath, said prices were creeping up in all three towns.
“We are doing very well. A huge part of our market is Hamiltonians at the present time,” he said.
Te Awamutu had seen an influx from Waikato’s biggest city as people tried to escape high prices, and realised it “is quite close”.
In the year to date, Harcourts had seen written volumes up 74 per cent on the same period a year ago, and average volumes in the town go from $300,000 to $331,000.
Both Otorohanga and Te Kuiti were also seeing an increase in prices, and properties were selling more quickly.
However, McGrath said it had taken “a lot longer” for the impact of Auckland and Hamilton prices increasing to flow through to the towns.
“We are starting to see more people coming into town now,” he said.
“That has just started to happen.”
While houses were moving “pretty fast” in Otorohanga now, listings were slow to make it to market and that was limiting price growth.
Written values were up on the year to date by about 6 per cent, compared to the same period a year ago, for Harcourts.
Te Kuiti had also seen “quite a lot of movement” with written values up by 26 per cent for the same period a year ago.
As prices in other centres continued to climb, so too would prices in Otorohanga and Te Kuiti, so long as supply came through, said McGrath.
However, the average price had dropped thanks to a large number of farm sales pushing up prices in 2014.
As for what was behind the growth in prices, McGrath said the “Auckland market has been controlling all of our markets”.
Even if it slowed down, he expected that growth to keep impacting all three towns for some time to come.
L.J. Hooker Morrinsville business owner Dave Young said the spring had been “extremely strong” for the town, with plenty of interest from Aucklanders, and short supply, keeping prices high.
While “it’s not a bonfire anymore…there are still plenty of hot embers,” he said.
That would see prices remain high heading into the new year, Young predicted, particularly if stock remained tight.
The new motorway, low interest rates and the relaxing of lending rules were all impacting the market in Morrinsville.
He said the market was “probably the best I have seen it” in 15 years in real estate.
Professionals Cambridge business owner Ian Brookes said the Cambridge market had been “very good, other than getting listings”.
“The biggest problem is anyone selling, they have to replace their property and there’s not a lot…there’s a dire shortage of properties to buy and build on.”
He said while demand from Auckland had slowed down, Hamiltonians were now in the market and that was keeping it moving, although “not quite as much as it has been”.
Currently, he said a buyer would struggle to find anything under $200,000 in the town, and any well-priced, well-presented property was flying off the shelves.
He said the currently property boom was “probably better than what the 2007 property boom was”.