Interest in buying or renting property from new immigrants outstripped inquiries from people intending to leave New Zealand, according to First National.
The company's monthly residential property survey found one in five of their nationwide offices had enquiries from newly arrived immigrants in November, "while considerably fewer people intending to leave New Zealand listed their home for sale or concluded tenancies."
"Much has been reported recently about there being more departures than inbound migrants," said First National group general manager John Stewart.
"But our network's experience is that more recent arrivals are active in the market more than those looking to depart."
Stewart said one factor may be that a larger proportion of those departing may not be property owners, while immigrants may be arriving with the skills and higher net worth that enables them to enter the property market.
He also said that after a quiet October the housing market was seeing a lift in vendor requests for appraisals and subsequent listings.
"However, in most areas, buyers are frustrated by the limited number of good listings and they are regularly fighting over the better properties, disregarding those less appealing or priced on the high side."
He said a lack of confidence was also being shown as many people who sought appraisals in November have subsequently indicated they are unsure now is the right time to sell.
The survey found price norms were generally lower in November compared to the year earlier across almost half of the country, a marked deterioration from October when a similar proportion of First National offices reported prices were consistent with a year earlier.
As has been the case for some time, parts of the Auckland market are bucking the trend, with First National offices in Glendene, Manukau and Papatoetoe reporting prices have increased across all sized properties.
Over 40% of offices reported price drops to be most noticeable in the two and smaller three bedroom properties this November compared to last.
First National said sales volumes for November remained similar to October.