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Bargain Hunting

There’s no denying it. New Zealand’s housing market is booming, with the latest data showing sales activity running red hot and regions around the country hitting record prices. Anecodotally, FOMO (fear of missing out) is, once again, at play and buyers are snapping up whatever they can get.

It wasn’t meant to be like this. Back in April, at the height of the level four lockdown, commentators were expecting a flood of distressed sales, significant price falls and a subdued market. At that time, many  investors were gearing up for a market full of bargains.

But ongoing record low interest rates, the Reserve Bank’s removal of the LVRs, the mortgage deferrment programme, and a range of other factors meant that didn’t happen. Quite the reverse. The amount of housing stock available for sale is at all time lows and that’s helping to fuel prices.

Yet investors are out there and buying. CoreLogic’s latest buyer classification data has mortgaged investors share of purchases in the last quarter at 26%: that’s the highest since 2016. This suggests there are some deals, if not bargains, out there. So we talked to a selection of experienced investors to find out how to find bargains in the current market.