New residential real estate listings in Auckland were 20 percent higher in September this year than a year ago,  but so far prices are remaining stable, says realtor Barfoot & Thompson.

There were 1,709 new listings, up 28 percent versus August and more than 43 percent higher than the monthly average for the last three months. At the end of September, the city’s biggest real estate agency said it had 4,515 properties on its books, the most for a month of September in seven years and the second highest ever for a September month.

However, the average sale price was $929,757, up 0.2 percent from a year earlier, while the median price was down 3 percent at $835,000, Barfoot said in a statement.

“The price point at which vendors and buyers are agreeing has barely moved in the past nine months,” said Peter Thompson, managing director. 

The number of property sales in September was 722, up 10 percent on the year but down 9 percent versus August.

While Thompson said the number of sales “was modest” he expects vendors and buyers to take confidence from current price stability of the prices, saying “this will assist sales numbers as we advance into spring”. 

More than 30 percent of all the sales in the month were of properties that fetched more than $1 million, with 3 percent of that number selling for $2 million or more.

Properties selling for less than $500,000 accounted for 9 percent of all sales.

Auckland property prices soared ahead of much of the country through the middle part of the decade, fueled by cheap finance and a housing supply shortage as the city’s population grew faster than expected.

However, it has been cooling as government efforts to restrict the sale of residential property to foreigners and encourage new construction, combined with Reserve Bank-imposed mortgage lending restrictions and tighter bank lending criteria have all borne on the Auckland housing market as the pace of inward immigration has started slackening.

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