Expectations that house prices will rise have fallen over the October quarter, and less people believe now is a good time to buy a house.
The latest ASB Housing Confidence Survey found 40% of respondents expect house prices to rise against 44% in the previous quarter, while 37% say now is a good time to buy against 40% in the quarter before.
ASB chief economist Nick Tuffley said that while nationwide house price expectations had decreased over the quarter, Christchurch continued to see improvement in price expectations and Auckland remained ‘tight.'
"A net 43% of those surveyed in Christchurch expect house prices will rise, compared to just over a net third of respondents in Auckland and a net 22% across New Zealand."
Nationally, there was an increase in the number of respondents expecting interest rates to rise over the next year.
"A net 57% of respondents now expect interest rates to rise, up from a net 46% in the July quarter," Tuffley said.
"However, there was a steady decline in interest rates expectations over the quarter, reflecting the deterioration in global market conditions over this period."
Tuffley said he expected Auckland to see the strongest house price growth, with modest house price increases nationwide next year.
"Underpinned by a continued level of housing inventory, we expect nationwide prices will increase at a modest annual rate of just over 3% heading into 2012," he said.
"The Auckland housing market is particularly tight, which is underpinning stronger house price growth in the region."