The Southland Times

House-price record set as boom rolls on

- Rachael Kelly

The Southland real estate market shows no signs of slowing down, with house prices and the number of houses being sold increasing last month.

But the market is predicted to ease slightly because of new Government legislatio­n, the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand predicts.

The average price for a house in Southland increased by 12 per cent to the year ending March, reaching $415,000, new REINZ data shows.

And the Southland district was the top performer, with a new record average price of $400,500 set in March, up from $396,000 in February.

In Invercargi­ll city the median price was $430,000, and it was $336,000 in the Gore district in March.

REINZ acting chief executive Wendy Alexander said purchasers were acting quickly when they found a property they wanted to secure in Southland.

In March, sales volumes cross the province rose 17.9 per cent from February, and were up 21.2 per cent on March 2020, the data shows.

In March 2020, 179 houses sold in the province, but that increased to 217 in March 2021.

The time it was taking to sell a house had dropped by six days yearon-year to a median of 21 days, which was the lowest for a March month since 2007, she said.

‘‘Activity is expected to remain steady in the Southland region over the coming months, although investor interest may ease slightly with the reintroduc­tion of LVRs and the new bright line and tax deductibil­ity changes announced in late March.’’

The REINZ house price index, which measures the movement in house prices for local council areas, increased 20.5 per cent year-on-year to a record level of 4124 in March 2021 for Southland, which showed the ongoing increase in the underlying value of property in the region, Alexander said.

Nationally, the median house price increased by 24.3 per cent to $826,300.

March had been another incredibly strong month from a price perspectiv­e across the country, with 12 regions and 32 districts seeing record median prices.

The national median also reached a record, increasing by $46,300 since last month, showing just how much pressure had been placed on house prices and how more supply was desperatel­y needed to come to the market, Alexander said.

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