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Lifestyle property prices up

Tuesday 19th July 2005

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The price of lifestyle property continues to reach new highs as city dwellers compete for rural properties, according to the latest rural sales figures from the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand.

The lifestyle property median selling price for June reached a new record figure of $355,000, compared with $345,000 in May and the equivalent figure for June 2004 of $285,000.

Real Estate Institute vice president Murray Cleland said demand for lifestyle properties remained keen and although sales during June at 593 were down on May’s 698 and the June 2004 figure of 645, “there is no shortage of buyers for lifestyle blocks and the market for these properties is enjoying the best of both worlds – strong rural and residential property markets pushing values higher.”

It was a similar story with farm prices in June, according to Cleland, as a shortage of properties drove prices up with the national farm median price up from $930,000 in May to $937,000 in June, well up on the June 2004 median of $710,000.

Farm sales were well down at 208 for June compared with 274 in May, but comparable with the June 2004 sales of 212 properties, “reflecting the seasonal slowdown in sales at this time of year.”

Cleland said that with prices up and sales down, the market belonged to the sellers with consequent firming in prices.

The national dairy median price increased from $2,000,000 in May to $2,500,000, but on just 16 property sales – the lowest for some time and well down on the June 2004 figure of 27 sales.

“The shortage of dairy property listings is a real problem for agents and buyers, there are just no properties on the market at the moment,” Cleland said.

The majority of farm sales were in grazing properties with 124 sold, down on the 154 transactions in May but up on the 106 grazing properties sold in June 2004. As a result the grazing median continued to firm from $788,500 in May to $807,500 in June, well up on the June 2004 median of $668,250.

With low sales figures some of the medians were bouncing around a little, according to Cleland, with the arable median up from $785,000 in May to $1,946,825 reflecting the fact that only 10 properties changed hands.

The finishing property median performed similarly up from $950,000 in May to $1,320,000 on just 25 sales.

The horticultural median was down from $800,000 in May to $632,000 in June on a thin sales volume of 19 sales, well down on the 34 sales recorded a year ago.

In the lifestyle market one of the notable performances came from Auckland with a solid lift in the regional median from $605,000 in May to $640,000 in June on 115 sales, up on the May sales figure of 104 but down on the June 2004 sales figure of 131. The Waikato was another buoyant market for lifestyle properties with 75 traded in June, compared with 77 a year ago, and a median price of $370,000, up on the May figure of $345,000 and the June 2004 figure of $255,000. -

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