NZ Property Market Rebound Likely During COVID-19 Recovery

23 April, 2020

NZ property listings hit an all-time low last month as COVID-19 arrived on Kiwi shores, but an international expert believes New Zealand will follow in the same footsteps as China, with a market rebound as the virus is contained.

REINZ figures show the number of properties for sale nationally decreased by 26.7% in March to the lowest levels since records began in 2007. These figures echo Trade Me data, reporting a 18% decline in new properties listed for sale during March, compared to 2019.

Mike DelPrete is an International Real Estate expert and Board Member of Tall Poppy Real Estate. He says data from international markets like China, USA, UK, and Italy provide valuable insights into the potential impact in New Zealand.

“It’s still early days, but based on all the data available, I believe New Zealand is following a similar path to China. Initially, there’s a noticeable dip in the property market for between four to six weeks, and then around two to three weeks after a lockdown begins, interest picks up.

“At the start, people are focused on their health, looking after their family, ensuring they have supplies and can work, then we start seeing some changes; they start looking online again and browsing.

“Markets then rebound. We will see a drop in the number of sales and listings as the initial response happens - somewhere between 50% to 70%, but we can also expect sales to rise as life begins to get back to normal,” says Mike DelPrete.

Michael Seymour, Tall Poppy Director, says early advice around Level 3 is promising for the industry, and will help with the rebound but says the industry needs more clarity, particularly around property viewings.

“We want to be able to safely support people to buy and sell their home during these unchartered times, and like the wider industry, we are seeking more information around the capacity for private viewings of homes.

“The market is going to experience a new normal over the coming months, and we need new processes in place to enable buying and selling. Electronic document signing capability will be a must, and our agents will be able to complete documents virtually. Most importantly though, we’re focused on making sure we can do it safely while looking after our customers, communities, and our team,” says Michael Seymour.

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