A local sales consultant says the lockdown is a curse – Aucklanders and others outside the city are asking more questions than ever about Trankey’s properties.
Emma Taylor, Harcourts New Plymouth Sales Consultant, said: “I’m looking forward to meeting people from outside the city who want to meet as soon as possible to get out of Auckland, or wherever they are.”
The same was true of Jane Simmonson of Ray White New Plymouth.
“Phone and email inquiries are stable and inquiries from Auckland to the Northland are greater than ever,” he said.
Despite the lockdown, it was business as usual for agents across the region, which was extended by four days on Friday to 11.59 on Tuesday night.
The only real change is that agents can’t physically show people through homes, but it’s not as big a problem as it used to be.
“The last time there was a lockdown, everyone stopped and panicked, but this time people are much more comfortable with their point of view,” Taylor said.
People who want to buy at auction can also enjoy the changes, with busy sales now only online, meaning bidders can “raise their hands” from home.
“That’s exactly what it would be like if you were in a room, except when you’re on the screen,” he said.
Since the auction is considered a public gathering, they will not be held in person until Alert Level 1, so they will continue to be online until then.
Taylor’s husband, Ian Taylor, is a commercial agent in Belize. He said it has been busier than usual for him.
A case of Covid 19 that came back from New South Wales and came to MIQ is the origin of the current epidemic.
“Commercial buyers are still worried, they are almost flooded.
“I don’t think this time (lockdown) will have much impact on the market,” he said.
Despite the lockdown and uncertainty, Simmons said market strength is still there and “active.”
Four open houses were postponed over the weekend, and the auctions were moved online only.
“Auctions have rapidly moved to an online platform that still enables buyers to transact in an open and transparent environment,” he said.
Property prices have risen since the 2020 lockdown. Stock shortages, record low interest rates and massive domestic demand have recently seen homes regularly sell at 50 percent or more of 2019 government prices.
Gary Malcolm, ambassador for the Rare State Institute of New Zealand (REINZ), described the residential property market as “fast” before the lockdown at 11.59pm on Tuesday.
“The lack of listing stock is making it difficult for buyers to secure the property and this means that prices are still rising,” he said.
Local buyers were also competing with buyers outside the city, especially from Auckland.
He said sellers are still making strong inquiries from buyers, and they are starting to see a slight increase in properties coming into the market, which is normal at this time of year.
“It’s been a normal business for all real estate agents in Tarnaki, but in a different way.”
Malcolm said that with digital technology, there are still walk-through videos of properties on websites, inquiries are still being made, and salesmen are meeting to see properties as soon as Quid Level 4 status is removed.
But the extended lockdown will have a major impact on the region’s economy, leading to job insecurity. He said there was also uncertainty over the possible rise in mortgage rates.
“I also think we’ll see more Auckland buyers trying to move to smaller towns, which they think are probably safer and more insulated than the epidemic.”