Longer to sell home but prices holding up - 13 Dec 2007 - NZ Herald: New Zealand Business and Personal Finance News

While the numbers of house sales have slowed, house prices appear to have held up - so far.

Real Estate Institute figures show the national median sale price was $352,000 last month, up from $350,000 in October and compared with $330,000 in November 2006.

But figures from Quotable Value on Monday showed the average house sale price was $393,000 in November, down from $406,176 in October.

The ANZ said in its economic commentary this week that house price growth was basically flat.

Another indicator that the heat had gone out of the market was the number of days it was taking to sell a property - now a median of 40 days, the highest level since the start of 2002.
NB: 'Flat' house price growth comes on the heals of 70%+ growth over the past 5 years.

This could portend some serious trouble, though:

Property sector respondents to the BNZ's latest monthly confidence survey expected prices to slow. There was "now real evidence of price weakening although not across all bands of property", said a Christchurch valuer.

An Auckland real estate agent said: "I am seeing some very scary registered valuations held by second tier lenders. Some are well beyond current realisable value."
Anyone following the housing situation in the US should recognize that as the beginning of the mess the US is in now.