Turning 50 - Celebration and Contemplation

Friday, June 22nd 2018

Fifty years of age certainly feels like a milestone as it is about to hit me head-on next weekend. Do I feel old? No, not at all - but for the first time ever I am starting to think that the number 50 does take a little getting used to. Life feels like a whirlwind: One minute you are at school, the next you are married and having kids; then turning 50. My hairdresser told me today that I didn’t look 50. That I was lucky to have hair at my age and my colour still had a good blend of coal in a steely-grey look – I’ll take that! Fifty years is certainly something to be proud of and to look back at what one has achieved, but it doesn’t take long to whizz by. I’m looking forward to celebrating that achievement next weekend with family and friends. Our company, Tremains, will also be turning 50 - in May 2020 - which will be huge for the company and I believe the region, given the volatile nature of being in business and dealing with the pace of change.

The real estate market is actually showing some small signs of change. We still have very good buyer numbers and continue to achieve excellent prices, however the average number of days to sell is starting to creep out and conditional contracts (subject to house sales) are now starting to come into play. Our Tremains Rentals team actually has some properties to rent and our sales team is having the odd open home with no attendees. Small signs for sure, so maybe it is just the traditional winter lull, but these are the first signs of a slowing market. The market can change very quickly, so if you are looking to sell it could be the time to price more aggressively, or to go back to that recent offer you turned down and look to re-negotiate. The May Hawke’s Bay market delivered 279 dwelling sales which was the best month since the 295 in March 2017, however June will certainly be down on these numbers. Keep an eye on volumes, because these will be your best guide to any small moves in market momentum.

With the significant move in the market over the last 12 and 24 months, I believe the Government needs to reassess its current products for first time buyers. The current price cap in Hawke’s Bay for KiwiSaver HomeStart grants sits at $400,000 for existing/older properties. This means first home buyers cannot purchase a property over this capped level to be eligible for the grants, which are significant. There are also other rules around eligibility, but given the fact that the Hawke’s Bay median sale price has moved more than 13 per cent in the last 12 months from $380,000 in May 2017 to $430,000 in May 2018, I feel it would be only reasonable to adjust this cap – also considering that most properties now under the $400,000 level have insurance and maintenance issues.

School holidays are just around the corner and the annual Tremains Colouring Competition will be launched this week. Our sales consultants will be delivering these from Friday, 22 June with further copies available at all of our Tremains offices. Entries close on Monday, 23 July and you can drop your completed version into our offices up to this date. There are over 50-plus prizes up for grabs.

If you are looking for land on which to build your dream home, look no further than Te Awa Fields with 67 sections brought to the market by Tremains this week. With our region’s builders desperate to find suitable building sites, the range of sections at Te Awa Fields offers something for everyone. Call your preferred Tremains sales consultant today for more information.

Have a great week.