Key Facts

  • The housing market is seeing a slow but steady upward trend with average property values increasing by over 2% in the last three months.
  • CoreLogic’s national House Price Index (HPI) shows a 1% rise in property values in December, a 0.7% gain in November, and a 0.4% increase in October.
  • The increased momentum can be attributed to peaking interest rates, a supportive labour market, and changed sentiment post-election.
  • December’s increase was the most significant monthly gain in almost two years, bringing the average house value to $924,489.
  • Affordability remains a challenge with high mortgage rates persisting despite small falls in property values.
  • National property values are still 3.3% below last year’s rate and 11.4% below the peak registered two years ago.

Article Summary

The New Zealand housing market is exhibiting signs of a slow positive momentum as average property values show an upward climb for the third consecutive month. According to the national House Price Index (HPI) released by CoreLogic, there was a 1% rise in property values in December, following a 0.7% gain in November, and a 0.4% increase in October.

These rising trends have been influenced by a combination of factors, including the peaking of interest rates, a favourable labour market, and a shift in sentiment following the election. The average house value, following December’s increase, which is the largest monthly gain since January 2022, stood at $924,489. However, the housing market still faces challenges like stretched affordability and high mortgage rates.

Despite these obstacles, the property value gains showed a spread across the major cities with Tauranga, Auckland, and Christchurch, all showing increases above 1% in December. However, Gisborne showed a 2.5% monthly fall despite a 0.4% rise since September and Napier also experienced a decrease in December. Lastly, while property prices have reduced from their peak, they are still about 25% more expensive than pre-Covid times, indicating a continued challenge in affordability.

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