Last year, Auckland’s largest real estate company couldn’t sell properties quickly enough to meet demand in New Zealand’s biggest city.
Houses were “flying out the door,” said Grant Sykes, a manager at real estate agency Barfoot & Thompson. “There were chin-dropping moments when agents stand around the room and are gobsmacked at the prices being achieved,” he told CNN Business.
In one example, a property sold for 1 million New Zealand dollars ($610,000) above the asking price in an auction that lasted all of eight minutes. (Most homes in New Zealand are sold at auction.)
That was in May 2021, when sales attracted thousands of bidders who drove prices ever higher. Since then, Barfoot & Thompson’s clearance rate at auction has plummeted, according to Sykes, prolonging sales times and sending prices lower.
The time it takes to…