House values in Auckland rose at almost twice the rate of the rest of New Zealand and are now 39.4% higher than the previous peak in 2007.

Values are likely to keep increasing on the back of strong migration, low interest rates, a shortage of housing and high consumer confidence. Quotable Value's statistics recently released showed that Auckland value rises sped up towards the end of the year.

And sale activity bucked the normal Christmas trend last month. Usually sales in December are lower than in November, but 2014 saw a higher level of sales than normal and this was across the country according to REINZ. 

However a shortage of listings is also expected to constrain the market. This won't help Auckland's affordability problem, with it remaining one of the 10 least affordable cities in the world due to high house prices but low incomes.

Auckland Council resists criticism that red tape contributes to the issue, saying building consents were at a 7 year high in November. 40% of these were for apartments. Council is also working with central government on special housing areas.

Source: NZ Herald