Dataset focuses on searches and engagements per listing
Fresh data from realestate.co.nz indicates a robust property market in New Zealand, with demand steadily increasing over the past 12 months.
The new realestate.co.nz dataset, focusing on searches and engagements per listing, offers insights into the demand side of the property equation.
Overall demand is calculated by dividing the number of property searches by the available properties. Engagement, meanwhile, represents active interest, combining the number of times a property has been saved or enquired about.
Brad Olsen (pictured above), CEO and principal economist at Infometrics, welcomed the addition of the new data to New Zealand’s property scene.
“Rising searches supports other data that has shown more interest in the housing market, and increased engagement per listing also supports the view that people looking in the market are increasingly serious about making purchasing decisions, rather than just passively observing what’s on the market,” Olsen said.
“This data also shows where Kiwis’ relative interest in housing is, with areas like Queenstown and Gisborne seeing a larger number of searches and engagements per listing compared to the national average.”
Vanessa Williams, spokesperson for realestate.co.nz, stressed the significance of understanding the relationship between supply and demand, adding that the more searches or engagements per listing, the higher likely is the competition.
“This data set is a more in-depth way of reviewing property demand than looking at the number of people on the site alone,” Williams said.
Over the past 12 months, both searches and engagements per listing have consistently risen, with a slight dip in September, possibly due to the election.
Williams anticipates a surge in activity in the first few months of the year after the typical December slowdown.
Demand increased nationwide in October compared to the same period in 2022, with searches per listing up 1.9%, and engagements per listing rising by 26.4%.
Williams noted said that despite relatively flat searches between September and October, engagements surged.
“Not only are we seeing an increase in the number of people searching for property, but given the significant lift in engagements, it appears that New Zealanders are moving from a passive to a more active mindset,” she said.
realestate.co.nz’s recent property report revealed increased confidence in the property market, marked by a surge in new listings, a return of the national average asking price to January 2023 levels, and a resurgence in the popularity of auctions.
Demand and engagement in main centres
Demand has increased year-on-year in NZ’s main centres. Wellington experienced the biggest surge in demand, with a 47.7% increase in searches, followed by Waikato at 8%, Auckland at 6.4%, Bay of Plenty at 3.9%, and Canterbury at 1.7%.
Engagements per listing also exhibited growth in these regions, with Wellington leading at 88.5%, Bay of Plenty at 54.7%, Auckland at 47.7%, Waikato at 46.3%, and Canterbury at 14.7%.
Williams said the data suggested heightened interest from buyers compared to the previous year.
“Buyers aren’t just searching for property but saving their favourites and making the move to enquire with a real estate agent about a property that best fits their lifestyle,” she said. “And, relative to the number of homes available, they are doing this more than they were in October 2022.”
Areas with highest demand
While demand increased year-on-year in the main centres, Gisborne, Otago, and the Central Otago/Lakes District consistently saw higher demand than any other region in New Zealand over the past 12 months.
Gisborne recorded the highest number of searches per listing in October, with comparable figures observed throughout the last year. Williams suggested that some of this demand might be attributed to cyclone damage in the region, impacting the available supply.
“We have seen low stock levels in Gisborne throughout the year, which could be contributing to more competition for the homes that are available for sale in the area,” she said.
By comparison, Auckland saw around one-fifth of the number of searches per listing in October. Central Otago/Lakes District and Otago emerged as the next most sought-after regions, with much of this demand driven by Aucklanders.
Home buyers exploring options outside their region
In October, Aucklanders conducted the most property searches for Central Otago/Lakes District and Otago.
In Central Otago/Lakes District, Aucklanders accounted for 29.9% of total searches, followed by Christchurch residents at 16.0% and Queenstown locals at 14.2%.
Similarly, in Otago, 29.8% of total searches were performed by Aucklanders, compared to 16.9% by those from Dunedin.
“Competition for property is likely high in these regions and will often include international buyers and people wanting to move from other parts of New Zealand or buy as second homes,” Williams said. “Given how beautiful these parts of the country are, it is hardly surprising. This might be good news for anyone looking to sell in these regions.”
Get the hottest and freshest mortgage news delivered right into your inbox. Subscribe now to our FREE daily newsletter.