Strong growth, but sales plum­met

Coastal News - - News - By ALI­SON SMITH

Strong eco­nomic growth con­tin­ues on the Coro­man­del — ex­ceed­ing the Waikato and na­tional growth rates — al­though prop­erty sales have plum­meted by al­most a quar­ter in the year to June.

The lat­est quar­terly eco­nomic data re­lease from In­fo­met­rics re­veals GDP in Thamescoro­man­del was $1092 mil­lion in the year to June 2018, up 3.3 per cent. That’s well above the 2.6 per cent growth rate for the wider Waikato re­gion, and 2.7 per cent na­tion­ally.

Tourism ex­pen­di­ture and guest nights are up 5 per cent and 3.4 per cent re­spec­tively. Traf­fic flows, an­other good in­di­ca­tor of eco­nomic ac­tiv­ity, rose 5.7 per cent in the year to June.

Thames-coro­man­del mayor San­dra Goudie says it was good to see the low un­em­ploy­ment rate recorded in the re­cent data, at 2.8 per cent.

House sales are down 23 per cent — the only neg­a­tive in the over­all pic­ture since prop­erty val­ues re­main buoy­ant.

How­ever, lo­cal real es­tate agents say a lack of list­ings ac­counts for the lack of sales. “If you’re think­ing of sell­ing, the val­ues are still there and there’s still de­mand for peo­ple want­ing to be on the Coro­man­del,” says Whanga­mata Real Es­tate prin­ci­pal Murray Cle­land.

“Our lat­est sale was beach­front at $2.5 mil­lion. And at the bot­tom end a $500,000 house still has buy­ers when these list­ings come into the mar­ket.

“When the sun comes out, the buy­ers come out.”

In Tairua, sim­i­larly there is a lack of sup­ply. Har­courts Tairua owner Tony White says it’s a good time to list. “I just sold a house that had been on the mar­ket for a long, long time. We put it back on the mar­ket and it sold for ask­ing price. We do have a short­age of houses to sell.”

The In­fo­met­rics re­port points to the drop in house sales as a much stronger fall than the na­tion-wide trend where sales fell by 7.0 per cent. “Look­ing for­wards, non-res­i­den­tial con­sents fell again by 22 per cent in the June 2018 year, which is a con­cern for the con­struc­tion sec­tor, but this will be tem­pered by a 6.6 per cent rise in res­i­den­tial con­sents.”

The coun­cil cam­paigned in re­cent years to lure city dwellers seek­ing a sea change, or per­suade bach own­ers to work and en­joy their hol­i­day homes for more days of the year. It may well be work­ing. Traf­fic flows, a good in­di­ca­tor of eco­nomic ac­tiv­ity, rose 5.7 per cent to June.

“It’s en­trepreneurs and busi­ness peo­ple that cre­ate jobs by es­tab­lish­ing and in­vest­ing in busi­nesses on the Coro­man­del,” Mayor Goudie says.

“Our mis­sion is to cre­ate an en­vi­ron­ment for the pri­vate sec­tor to in­vest in our dis­trict.”

With baches reach­ing the val­ues that they now have, it’s lit­tle won­der the own­ers are choos­ing to max­imise their in­vest­ment with more time at the beach, says Bun­nings Whanga­mata man­ager Ted Lit­tle­john.

He’s no­ticed spend­ing habits have changed in the re­tail side of the busi­ness and as a whole­saler to lo­cal build­ing crews, growth was sig­nif­i­cant.

“Last year most def­i­nitely we saw a big rise in build­ing sup­plies. In re­tail, peo­ple are stay­ing in town a bit longer and tak­ing Mon­day and Fri­day off. With all the houses that got sold over the last few years, the val­ues have got so high you are al­most forced to make use of them. You re­ally want bang for your buck.

“From our point of view, that’s fan­tas­tic.”

Mr Cle­land echoes this sen­ti­ment: “A num­ber of peo­ple are work­ing here three to four days per week and go­ing back into the city. With tech­nol­ogy it’s ab­so­lutely pos­si­ble to work here.”

Ac­cord­ing to QV, the me­dian house price in Whanga­mata is just shy of $800,000. There was a to­tal of 50 prop­erty sales in the last three months.

The Coro­man­del’s un­em­ploy­ment rate re­mains very low at 2.8 per cent and that’s par­tic­u­larly im­pres­sive since mi­gra­tion (an an­nual gain of 171 peo­ple) has boosted our dis­trict’s labour sup­ply. Thamescoro­man­del’s un­em­ploy­ment rate also com­pares favourably to the na­tional av­er­age of 4.5 per cent.

Growth is on the rise across parts of the Coro­man­del and Whanga­mata.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.