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Have you sold a home before?
How did you choose your real estate agent? Did you go to one of their open homes? Trust a recommendation? Test how they treat prospective purchasers? Were you happy with the outcome? Did you feel confident in the process? Do you think your advertising spend was justified? 
CoreLogic is currently researching Kiwi perceptions about real estate agents, with a new survey focusing on understanding experiences when selling property and how well agents are meeting consumer expectations (or not).
The NZ survey builds upon research conducted by CoreLogic in Australia, which found that while real estate agents suffer generally from a poor public reputation, 66% of the vendors surveyed rated the overall experience of selling their home positively, with 31% claiming it was ‘excellent’ and 35% rating it as ‘good’. 68% of respondents would recommend their agent to friends or family. 
Kylie Davis, the Head of Content at CoreLogic comments: “What I’m really looking forward to understanding is how people judge whether an agent is really great or average. By capturing those insights, the industry can start to deliver more targeted training that encourages adoption of those behaviours.”
The Australian research identified that vendors wanted agents to provide better feedback throughout the sales process, to be accountable, friendly and approachable, to demonstrate how the sale price is determined and provide advice and feedback on how to best sell their home. “It will be interesting to see what the expectations of Kiwi sellers are and how they compare to what we’ve found across the Tasman.” Ms Davis said. 
If you’ve sold a home using an agent, we’d love to hear your thoughts. Everyone who completes the survey will go in the draw to win 1 of 5 $100 vouchers from their choice of Mitre 10, Countdown or New World*.
p.s. if you yourself are considering selling soon, here are some great tips on how to choose your agent, by some of the best in the business. 


*Prize draw terms and conditions apply and can be found here


The latest monthly QV House Price Index shows nationwide residential property values for February increased 6.5% over the past year and 1.2% over the past three months. The nationwide average value is now $672,645. When adjusted for inflation the nationwide annual increase drops slightly to 4.9%.
Meanwhile, residential property value growth across the Auckland Region increased slightly by 1.0% year on year which is the slowest annual rate since August 2017. Values also ticked up slightly by 0.8% over the past quarter. The average value for the Auckland Region is now $1,053,948. When adjusted for inflation values dropped 0.6% over the past year.
QV National Spokesperson Andrea Rush said, “Values continue to rise faster in Wellington, Dunedin and many regional centres than in Auckland.”
“The Hamilton and Tauranga markets have picked up in February after a sluggish start to the year while the Hawkes Bay continues to see some of the strongest value growth in the  North Island.”
“Christchurch is the only main centre to see values drop over the past year, while many regional areas of the South Island continue to see values rise including Nelson and Tasman, Central Otago and the MacKenzie District as well as Southland and Invercargill.”
“Low interest rates and the easing in the LVR restrictions has seen many more first home buyers active in areas where they can still afford to enter the market, while some investors also appear to be becoming more active now they need a slightly lower deposit.”
The Auckland market remains mixed with some areas seeing values continuing to rise and others seeing values drop slightly. The former Auckland City Council suburbs rose 1.2% year on year but were down 0.2% over the past three months and the average value there is now $1,239,086. Waitakere values were down 0.8% year on year but they increased by 0.5% over the past three months. The average value there is now $825,362; North Shore values rose 2.9% in the year to February and 1.5% over the past three months; Manukau was flat at 0.0% change year on year, but values rose 1.3% over the past three months; Papakura values rose 2.3% year on year and 1.5% over the past three months and the average value there has now topped $700,000 and is sitting at $702,318; Franklin values also rose 1.6% year on year and Rodney values were also up 1.5% year on year.
QV Auckland Senior Consultant, James Steele said, “The market remains sluggish with values holding for the most part, with a lack of good quality listings on the market and lower than normal sales volumes for this time of year.”
“First home buyers remain active in the market and there is good demand for entry level housing stock. However, many are still finding it difficult to get the finance to purchase, with prices remaining high.”
“Properties that are not well presented, have outstanding maintenance or are damp or shaded for example are sitting on the market for longer. This is a change to when the market was very hot and everything was selling quickly.”
“Buyers appear to be more discerning and people are choosing not to sell as they are not guaranteed of being able to find anything else desirable in this market.”
“The rental market is very tight and rents have increased significantly in many areas over the past year, highlighting the lack of accommodation in the city.”
Hamilton City home values rose slightly by 0.8% over the past three months signifying a recent pick up in the market and values increased 3.1% in the year to February. The average value in Hamilton is now $548,417.
QV Hamilton Property Consultant, Andrew Jaques said, “The market appears to have bounced back after the Christmas break, with an upswing in the number of houses for sale and the number of buyers.”
“Confidence has improved with first home buyers being particularly active.”
“Activity is being driven by the fact that Hamilton’s population has continued to grow and low interests rates appear to be making it easier for people to service mortgages.”
“With the Reserve Bank move to increase the cap on banks from 10% to 15% of lending to home buyers with a deposit of less than 20.0% has also made it easier for some to purchase with a smaller deposit.”
“There is strong demand for land in high density zoned areas where duplex and townhouse developments are possible.”
“There is also a shortage in rental properties throughout Hamilton and this is likely due to a number of reasons including that rents are out of synch with the dramatic increase in property value thus yields have diminished; also student numbers are up following the government’s new tertiary policies; and the LVR ratios still require 25.0% deposit for the purchase of existing houses for rental purposes which is too high for many investors.”
Tauranga home values rose 4.9% year on year and 2.8% over the past three months. The average value in the city has now ticked over $700,000 and is sitting at $706,825. The Western Bay of Plenty market rose 7.0% year on year but dropped back 0.6% over the past three months. The average value in the district is now $622,227.
QV Tauranga Senior Consultant, David Hume said, “With such a great summer, activity in the market was slow initially to take off after the holiday period.”
“However, during February the market has shown good activity, with reports of properties with little interest in late stages of 2017, now getting multi offers.”
“The easing of the Loan to Value restrictions has helped market activity as have low interest rates and the strong regional economy here.”
“Stock levels in the Mount Manganui area are very low, with the top end of the market there remaining very strong and a substantial amount of building activity happening at present.”
“The Western Bay of Plenty market is also still seeing plenty of activity with Te Puke housing in demand off the back of the Kiwifruit market achieving record highs.”
“Buyers include those priced out of the Mount and Papamoa looking for bigger houses out of the city and the new highway has also eased congestion.”
“It seems Tauranga has now grown from a town to a city and along with this we are seeing that school zoning is also becoming more important with more traffic meaning the desire to be closer to schools has become far more prominent.”
“Now schools zones like Mount Manganui, Omanu and Bethlehem are commanding huge prices an example of this is sections in Bethlehem that were selling for $500,000 near Bethlehem College are now fetching around $850,000.”
Hawkes Bay
Values continue to rise across the Hawkes Bay region. Napier values rose 16.5% year on year and 3.1% over the past three months. The average value in the city is now $488,236. Hastings values are also continuing to rise up 13.8% year on year and 2.0% over the past three months. The average value there is now $451,686. The Central Hawkes Bay has also seen values jump 22.1% year on year and 8.1% over the past three months.
QV Napier, Senior Consultant, Philippa Pearse said, “The Hawkes Bay market remains buoyant with strong value growth continuing.”
“Investors are still active and include baby boomers looking for rental properties, or buying for family who can’t afford to get in on their own, or ahead of family moving back into the area from other areas or overseas.”
“There is also strong activity from first home buyers and investors in the lower valued areas of Napier and Hastings such as Akina, Mahora, Maraenui and Flaxmere where you can still purchase homes under $400,000 particularly from those looking to take advantage of the government grant and KiwiSaver."
“Central Hawkes Bay has seen value growth of more than 20.0% over the past year mainly due to increased demand from lower income families priced out of Napier and Hastings who now have to look further afield to more affordable homes.”
Values across the whole Wellington Region rose 8.6% in the year to February and 3.1% over the past quarter and the average value is now $640,737. Wellington City increased by 7.6% year on year and 1.9% over the past three months and is the average value there is now $764,020.Meanwhile values in Upper Hutt rose 8.5% year on year and 1.0% over the past three months; Lower Hutt rose 7.7% year on year and 0.5% over the past quarter; Porirua rose 9.6% year on year and 2.1% over the past quarter and Kapiti Coast saw the greatest annual increase in the region with values there rising 13.9% year on year and 1.5% over the past three months.
QV Wellington Senior Consultant, David Cornford said, “The Wellington market is still seeing plenty of activity although the rate of value growth has slowed a bit.”
“There is a lack of supply in the market particularly in Wellington City itself and Porirua, which is keeping prices up for those properties that are selling on the market.”
“However, the Hutt Valley is a bit flat but first home buyers remain very active accounting for 42.0% of sales in Lower Hutt and in 30.0% of all sales across the Wellington region so they are a big portion of the market.”
“Investor activity is pretty flat at the moment and yields have increased slightly due to strong rent growth and less promise of quick capital gains.”
“There is a shortage of rental property and this has driven rents up and it’s become very difficult to get a flat with potentially 20 or 30 or more people competing for the same property.”
“In many cases, before landlords even advertise their property for rent they are receiving enquiries from people desperate to find accommodation. A number of flats are renting without even being advertised.”
Christchurch city values continue to be relatively stable with values down slightly by 0.8% year on year and up 0.1% over the past three months. The average value is sitting at $494,563.
QV Christchurch Senior Consultant Daryl Taggart said, “These statistics confirm what we are seeing in the market which is that we are currently experiencing a period of low growth which has been a continuation of the same theme over the past 12-18 months.”
“In saying this, properties are still selling but we’re just not seeing an increase in values.”
“So far we’ve noticed no significant changes in activity from home buyers or investors since the easing of the LVRs in January.”
Dunedin residential property values are continuing to rise and have increased 9.3% in the year to February and 1.7% over the past three months. The average value in the city is now $392,921. Average values in Dunedin- Central and North and Dunedin – Taieri are now more than $400,000.
QV Dunedin Property Consultant, Aidan Young said, “Strong demand for residential property remains in the Dunedin market.”
“Buyers are not doing due diligence in many cases as any they have a fear of missing out by making offers conditional upon this and while the variety of offers can be significant, its cash unconditional offers that are becoming more common.”
“All sectors of the housing market appear to be performing well from the low to high range and the market sentiment is positive with reports that open homes are being well attended and that many buyers are becoming frustrated on missing out on properties.”
Nelson residential property values continued on their steady upward trending rising 10.5% year on year and 2.7% over the past three months. The average value in the city is now $567,767.  Meanwhile values in the Tasman District have also continued to rise, up 12.9% year on year and 2.3% over the past three months. The average value in the Tasman district is now $565,643.
QV Nelson Registered Valuer Craig Russell said, “There has been a continuation of strong but steady market demand in the Nelson region particularly for homes priced at first home buyers.”
“Multi-offer situations are still common for properties up to $550,000 with offer prices tending to be within a smaller range of each other.”
“Properties that have deferred maintenance or outstanding repairs are however being discounted in the current market as due diligence clauses make a return.”
“Lifestyle properties have seen a big increase in value over the past few years with there being a strong demand between Richmond and Motueka along the Coastal Highway.”
“New quality homes in Stoke and Richmond are now selling in the $750,000 to $950,000 price bracket.”
“Access to finance has been an issue for investors and has contributed to a drop off in investor activity in the Nelson region.”
Provincial centres
In the North Island, many other provincial centres continue to see stronger growth than is being seen in the Auckland region, particularly in areas closer to the Capital city such as in South Wairarapa where values jumped to rise up 23.2% year on year and 6.0% over the past three months; Masterton values were up 18.1% year on year and 2.8% over the past three months and Horowhenua where values rose 17.1% in the year to February and 2.6% over the past quarter. Meanwhile, nowhere apart from parts of Auckland saw values decrease over the past year although values were down in Kawerau, Stratford, Manuwatu and Tararua over the past three months.
In the South Island, the MacKenzie District continues to see a huge surge in growth with values rising 23.5% year on year and 8.1% over the past three months; Southland has also seen strong growth with values up 17.7% year on year and 4.9% over the past quarter and Invercargill values also rose 10.2% year on year and 3.2% over the past three months which is the strongest growth seen in the city since prior to the GFC.
Access the full set of February QV House Price Index statistics here.
If the NZ property market were a person, it will have dragged its heels back to work after a year of constant change, unrelenting pressure and left-field surprises.
Like all well intentioned self-improvers, it would have taken time over the summer break to reflect on the year that was, before embracing what’s coming next. And by all accounts, what a year 2017 was. 
It started hot on the heels of a major milestone ticking over:  the total value of all residential property in NZ passing the trillion dollar barrier. That’s a lot of value in one asset class and reinforces just how much property is an obsession here.
In early 2017 this was the lay of the land: 
  • The LVR restrictions had recently been tightened by the Reserve Bank of NZ. Heading into 2018, those restrictions have been loosened - albeit only marginally.
  • NZ had not long sworn in a new Prime Minister after John Key surprisingly stepped down in December 2016. Fast forward a year and once again we have a new Prime Minister in Jacinda Ardern, plus a whole new Government too.
The global audience was still getting its head around both the Brexit vote and Trump’s election victory and what it was all going to do for the world’s economy. Turns out that not too much impact was felt by NZ’s property market. 
Moving from politics back to property - despite a slowing of property values leading into 2017 there remained concern about prices increasing and the level of debt being incurred, especially by investors. Of course this was the main driver for the Reserve Bank tightening the LVR restrictions in late 2016 - lifting the minimum deposit requirement for investors to 40%.
From this point onwards we saw a sustained impact on property values, especially in Auckland. While previous LVR restrictions had only impacted the market short term, this time their effect was felt long term. They weren’t the sole reason for the slowdown though.
Mortgage interest rates had moved up past their record lows and slowly inched higher. But perhaps more crucially the retail banks were beginning to tighten up the purse strings, with tougher lending criteria and more stringent stress testing around the serviceability of mortgages.
This lead to sales activity getting significantly dented across the country but as the area with the most expensive property in NZ*, Auckland was the hardest hit. After enjoying the biggest growth over the previous four years, from April 2017 onwards Auckland’s sales volumes were consistently down 30%.
An increase in total listings meant more choice for active buyers, who were actually diminishing in numbers. This combination meant lesser reason for prices to rise, which contributed to the slowdown too.   
And then came winter. 
All the factors mentioned above contributed to it being a particularly freezing one for NZ’s property market, influenced further by the impending General Election.  From July we got bombarded with election advertising and endless policy debates - which added just a touch of uncertainty to the future. Initially National was very clearly in the lead, so the possibility of leadership change was minimal. But Jacinda Ardern quickly changed all that, with her promotion to the top job in August bringing Labour back into contention. Once again, people wondered about the property market’s future.
This was also when property investors started to struggle. Yield from investments had already significantly reduced, capital gains were drying up without sign of improvement, and securing funding was proving difficult. This trio of challenges meant mortgaged investors’ share of sales reduced to less than 25% (from a peak of 28%) nationwide. Remember that flow of Auckland investors into other regions as well?  It soon began to taper off too. 
While this was all going on, first home buyers were actually increasing their share of sales - although it’s worth noting that while all buyers were affected by the tightening of credit, it was investors affected the most. This meant the share of sales to first home buyers actually increased.
Property investors (or speculators to be more accurate) now find themselves under increased scrutiny from the new Government. The Healthy Homes Guarantee Bill passed in November, meaning improved standards for rental properties. About the same time foreign investors were also targeted, with foreign buyers soon to be effectively banned from buying existing property in NZ. So no respite in 2018 for some investors then, especially with expected tax changes to end the ability to negatively gear investment property and the extension of the Brightline test to five years to further ensure short term capital gains are taxed. 
Before the year was out we did see a very late spring lift in both sales activity and values in Auckland but then the summer break meant things came to a grinding halt. The NZ property market was busy panic buying at Kmart and fretting over whether to My Food Bag the Christmas lunch or not. We now won’t see a decent level of activity return from the summer lull until later this month.
So after all this, where did we end up? 
The statistics tell us that what it meant for Auckland was an overall value increase of 0.4% through 2017, but mixed results within the Super City; Auckland City finished up 2.2%, as did Papakura, but Waitakere ended the year down 1.9% and Manukau down 1.0% - easily the worst performing of our larger centres nationwide. Christchurch also finished the 2017 year below where it started, albeit by a very slim margin of 0.1%. 
Of the stronger performers, it was Dunedin that outpaced the rest of the ‘big 6’, realising a touch over 10% growth throughout the year. Wider Wellington (including Porirua and the Hutt) wasn’t far behind - rebounding from its early year slowdown to finish the year with 9.4% growth in values, with Porirua the pick of the bunch at 13.2% growth.
Meanwhile, Hamilton fared only slightly better than Auckland with 1.6% growth. Tauranga tried to get momentum again after hitting the brakes in early 2017 but couldn’t sustain it, ending the year up only 3.2%.
Outside our main six centres the best and worst were Masterton (19.6%), Horowhenua (16.5%) and Wanganui (15.1%) on top and Selwyn (0.3%), Waimakariri (1.7%) and Timaru (5.1%) at the bottom.
Now for that trillion dollar question …what does 2018 have in store?
Scanning across a few of the big influencers, net migration turned properly mid-way through 2017 after throwing a few dummy passes earlier to keep us all on our toes. It’s likely to continue to drop in 2018 as the Government reduces the in-flow of low skilled migrants and we start to lose Kiwis to Australia again (after gaining for the better part of the last two years).
Consumer confidence held up quite well through 2017 but is looking like its feelings are little bit hurt as we move into 2018. The weakness in the property market will be affecting that, but the strength of the labour market is holding it up, and that should remain relatively strong in 2018.
A major influencer on property values is mortgage interest rates. As has been well covered, a key part of those is the official cash rate which is tipped to stay on hold for 2018, but many economists are picking some upward pressure on mortgage rates due to the cost of funding for the banks.
So, plenty of macro-economic factors pointing to property demand remaining relatively constrained in 2018, but of course significant constraints on the construction industry remain, so supply will still lag. While there are ambitious Government targets to improve overall supply, particularly in Auckland, it’s unlikely that things will happen fast enough to massively improve the current demand/supply imbalance.
And don’t forget the research we released in the middle of 2017 which exposed that the actual increase in stock (6,000 units in 2016) is far behind those being consented (9,000 units in 2016). This is partly because the demolition of old properties to clear space for new properties isn’t taken into account with the ‘building consents issued’ measure.
So while building consents provide a high level health check of the construction industry, and they are trending upwards, they’re not always telling the whole story.
In Auckland we’ll probably see values remain relatively flat for most of 2018, barring a local or global economic shock. With more properties available, the fear of missing out has been removed - taking with it the previous upwards price pressure. People can once again save faster than the growth in property values (so waiting can actually pay off), plus it’s harder to secure funding…all adding up to constrained demand.  
Elsewhere we may see value growth continue a bit longer, particularly in Wellington and Dunedin where there remains a shortage of available listings and where the growth phase took a little longer to kick in than places like Hamilton and Tauranga. These centres will also likely see a period of consolidation as unaffordability starts to bite.
Christchurch is a city all on its own in terms of where it’s at in the property market cycle. It’s been more subdued throughout the last few years as it matures from the earthquake rebuild. There is still substantial development in the region, despite passing the residential construction peak. There are concerns of over-supply in some parts of the region but it doesn’t appear to be wide-spread, which should mean relative stability for 2018.
In our smaller centres, debate remains as to whether the strong growth of 2016/17 was actually warranted.  Some areas have benefitted from being in close proximity to larger centres, while others had stronger local economies to justify growth. Local knowledge is unbeatable in every case. But on the whole, migration to these areas has slowed: jobs drying up and value growth made property less affordable. So with the upwards pressure on mortgage interest rates having the same effect as anywhere in the country, it’s unlikely the strong recent growth will be sustained. 
So long story short, NZ’s property market may very well have concluded that it’s time to settle down for a year of re-evaluation and reflection, after a few spent living it up like a 20-something on their OE. 
- Nick Goodall, Head of Research - CoreLogic NZ
*Queenstown has surpassed Auckland as NZ’s most expensive centre when you look solely at average values, but given the size of Auckland, having such a high value is of far more significance than Queenstown which is unique in its economy being so heavily driven by tourism and is not what could be deemed typical of the property market in NZ.


New Zealand Regional Maps:
It was a disparate year for residential property values with a general trend of slowing in the rate of growth due to LVR speed limits, stricter retail bank lending criteria and uncertainty ahead of the election, along with periods of rapid value increases in some areas and decreasing values in others.
Overall the nationwide average shows residential property values increased 6.6% or $41,660 during 2017 from $627,905 in December 2016 to $669,565 in December 2017, according to the latest QV House Price Index statistics. The average national value increased 3.6% over the final three months of 2017. 
The full set of QV House Price Index statistics for all New Zealand can be found here.
Sales volumes were down on 2016 for every month during the year and between February and October they were in excess of 20% below 2016 levels before picking up in November when a post-election late spring surge saw them jump to just 10% lower than November 2016 levels.
QV National Spokesperson, Andrea Rush, “A slow-down in the rate of value growth in the housing market that began in the latter part of 2016 with the introduction of LVR speed limits requiring a 40% deposit by investors continued throughout 2017.”
“The frenzy in the market of the previous three years induced by high numbers of investors in the market subsided and we saw a return to more normal levels of activity in housing markets around the country.”
“By October nationwide annual value growth had slowed to 3.9%, the lowest rate of growth seen in five years and for the Auckland Region it slowed to - 0.6%, the slowest annual rate of growth seen there since March 2011.”
“High prices, constraints on finance caused by tightening in retail banks lending criteria and higher deposit requirements removed many buyers from the market and sales volumes plummeted.”
“Potential housing policy changes in the lead up to the election also caused uncertainty and people took a wait and see approach causing activity to slow dramatically over the winter quarter and this resulted in value decreases in many areas.”
“The usual annual spring surge was very slow to arrive and listing levels and market activity did not pick up until November and December and this can be seen in both sales volumes and value growth recovering in the last two months of the year.”
“The annual rate of value growth recovered to 6.4% in November and 6.6% in December and sales volumes for November lifted 21.0% higher than in October. This was partly due to buyers delaying purchasing until the election result was decided and may also have been in part due to some buyers racing to purchase before the new foreign buyers’ ban in December.”
“The slight easing in LVR restrictions by the Reserve Bank due this month is likely to help improve activity and demand in housing the market as we move through the summer months.”
“Low interest rates, relatively high net migration and lack of supply means market drivers remain and we are likely to see values hold for the most part during 2018 in the main centres but the trend of lower rates of growth is likely to continue."
"However, areas where investors were previously very active may continue to see values drop back where prices remain too high for first home buyers particularly in Auckland, Hamilton and surrounding districts.”
“Some regional areas may continue to see stronger value growth than the main centres during the year.”   
Main Centres
Of the main centres Porirua city, Napier, Hastings and Whanganui saw the greatest percentage growth during the year.
The average value across the wider Auckland region increased 0.4% or $4,583 from $1,047,179 at December 2016 to $1,051,762 at December 2017. Values rose 1.2% over the past three months.
Annual growth ticked up again across the Auckland region in the final quarter of 2017 with most areas seeing values rising again. The former Auckland City Council central suburbs saw values rise 2.2% in the year to December and 1.6% over the final quarter of the year with Auckland City - East continuing to rise above average for the region, up 3.6% year on year and 2.8% over the past three months, the average value there is now $1,575,133. Strong value growth also continues for Auckland City – Islands with the Waiheke Island market driving growth up 13.7% in the year to December and 6.6% over the final quarter of the year.
North Shore values also ticked up again rising 0.7% in year on year and 2.6% over the final three months of the year. Waitakere values also rose 1.0% over the final three months of 2017 although values were down 1.9% in the year since December 2016.
Meanwhile, values are also increasing again in both Rodney and Franklin and particularly in Papakura which rose 2.2% year on year and 2.6% over the final three months of the year. Manukau bucked the general trend as values there dropped 1.0% year on year and 0.3% over the past three months.
Values in Hamilton dropped slightly by 0.5% over the past three months but rose on average by 1.6% or $8,586 over the past year from an average of $534,860 in December 2016 to $543,446 in December 2017.
Tauranga home values increased 3.2% year on year or $21,528 from an average value of $672,197 in December 2016 to $693,725 in December 2017. After dipping in November, values in the city had begun rising again by December and values rose 1.0% in the final quarter of the year.
Meanwhile, the Western Bay of Plenty market has seen sustained growth throughout 2017 and rose 9.1% in the year to December or $52,185 from an average value of $571,520 in December 2016 to $623,705 in December 2017. Values rose 1.4% over the past three months.
Values across the wider Wellington Region rose 9.4% or $ 54,040 over the past year from an average value of $574,410 in December 2016 to an average value of $628,450 in December 2017. Values across the region rose 3.6% over the last quarter of 2017.
Wellington City increased by 9.1% year on year and 3.3% over the past three months. The average value there is now $756,879. Wellington – North is up the most, increasing by 6.2% over the past three months alone and 11.2% in the year to December 2017.  Meanwhile values continue to rise strongly across Wellington’s regional centres. Upper Hutt is up 11.1% year on year and 2.6% over the past three months; while Lower Hutt rose 11.4% year on year and 1.0% over the past quarter; and Porirua rose 13.2% year on year and 3.7% over the past quarter. Finally, the Kapiti Coast is up 13.5% year on year and 3.8% over the past three months.
QV Wellington Senior Consultant, David Cornford said, “It was another year of relatively strong value growth throughout the Wellington region however year on year value growth slowed considerably during 2017 compared to 2016.”
“Value growth took a breather over the winter months and during the build up to the election however by mid spring market activity had started to pick up and value growth continued.”
“A shortage of stock, low interest rates and a relatively strong local economy continues to support a robust property market in the Wellington region.”
“First home buyers had a strong presence in the Wellington market throughout 2017.”
Christchurch city values have remained stable, dropping slightly by 0.1% or $541 over the past year from an average value of $494,247 in December 2016 to $493,706 in December 2017. Values have increased slightly by 0.4% over the past quarter.
Meanwhile, growth remains strong across Canterbury’s regions. The Waimakariri District up 1.7% year on year and 1.5% over the past three months; while Selwyn values increased slightly 0.3% year on year and 0.7% over the past quarter.
QV Christchurch Property Consultant, Hamish Collins said, “It’s been slow and steady for the Christchurch housing market during 2017. We have seen less activity than in previous years as heat comes out of post-earthquake market and overall the market has normalised after the earthquakes”
“The high level of housing stock on the market has given purchasers’ more options and vendors are finding they need to adjust their expectations from a moving post-earthquake market to a slower environment.”
“First home buyers remain active in the market as do those purchasing “as is where is” properties with existing unrepaired earthquake damage.”
“Those in the investor market remain anxious about potential changes to regulations such as insulation, building warrant of fitness and taxes and investors have also been hamstrung by LVR and bank lending restrictions throughout the year.”
The recent trends continue as residential property values continue to rise across Dunedin. Values rose 10.4% or $36,965 over the past year from an average value of $354,133 in December 2016 to an average value of $391,098 in December 2017. Values increased 2.7% over the final three months of 2017.
Of particular interest is the strong growth of the Peninsular and Coastal part of Dunedin, which is up 5.6% over the past three months and 17.9% year on year, followed by the Southern area which increased 5.4% over the last three months of the year and 10.9% year on year.
QV Dunedin Property Consultant, Aidan Young said, “Demand for residential property in Dunedin has remained strong, from both the local and national buyers throughout 2017.”
“First home buyers have remained active throughout the year with the lower entry point of the Dunedin market aiding this situation.”
“The LVR restrictions had little effect on values, although it did see an easing in demand from investors due to the 40% deposit requirement.”
“Supply has been consistently low, with good quality properties being sold relatively quickly and vacant land has also been receiving good prices as demand for sections remains strong.”
“The upper end of the market has seen some slight shifts, indicating good confidence for higher priced homes.”
“The election appeared to slow activity, but we have not seen any material impacts yet.”
“Value growth has been moderate during 2017 and we can expect to see a similar positive outlook for the market in 2018, providing conditions remain.”
Nelson residential property values continue to increase, rising 11.1% or $55,318 year on year from an average value of $499,866 in December 2016 to $555,184 in December 2017. Values rose 1.8% over the last three months of 2017.
Meanwhile, values in the Tasman District have also continued to rise, up 11.4% or $56,927 year on year from an average value of $499,082 in December 2016 to $556,009 in December 2017. They increased 3.0% over the last quarter of 2017.
QV Nelson Property Consultant Craig Russell said, “The Nelson/Tasman market experienced strong value growth over 2017 despite a slow winter period in the build up to the election.”
“The market here is considered to be more robust than other regions given the strong local economy and being a desirable place to live.”
“Low interest rates continue to fuel demand which has outpaced supply. This is particularly true for section sales with pent up demand driving up land values as new stages of developments are released to the market.”
“During 2017 we saw a surge in activity for high value properties being sold particularly around Ruby Bay/Tasman, Nelsons Port Hills, College area and Atawhai.”
“Listing numbers remained relatively stable in 2017 with a decrease occurring in winter which we consider a normal seasonal trend.”
“Sales volumes decreased in 2017 compared with the previous year as homeowners either chose to renovate over buying, or were simply priced out of the market.”
“Investor activity also eased during the year following the introduction of the 40% deposit requirement in late 2016.”
Hawkes Bay
Values continue to rise across the Hawkes Bay region. Napier values rose 15.1% or $62,770 year on year from an average value of $415,189 in December 2016 to an average value of $477,959. Values rose 2.6% over the past three months.  
The Hastings market also continues to rise up 14.9% or $57,828 year on year from an average value of $387,133 in December 2016 to an average value of $444,961 in December 2017. Values increased 3.0% over the last three months of the year.
Other Provincial centres
The growth in values across many central and lower North Island provincial areas continues. Values in regions including South Waikato, Opotiki, Rangitikei, Tararua and Carterton have increased particularly over the past three months. Meanwhile, provincial areas to the South and North of Auckland – including the Kaipara, Hauraki and Thames Coromandel District - continue to see values decrease despite the trend of market growth over the past few years.      
In the South Island regional centres, it’s a relatively stable outlook. Values across most areas are either flat or steadily increasing. The MacKenzie District continues to rise up 5.2% over the past three months and 24.7% year on year which is the highest annual rise in the country, while Southland and Invercargill are also continuing on an upward trend. Market growth remains strong in the Queenstown Lakes, as values increase 3.0% over the past three months with an average current value now much higher than the Auckland Region of $1,111,995.