Overflowing demand in Auckland has accelerated the growth in New Zealand residential property values at their fastest annual pace in eight years.
But the Auckland market is showing signs speculators think it has reached its peak, according to Quotable Value.
National property values advanced 11.3 per cent in the 12 months through August to an average $NZ543,331 ($A484,468), the state-owned agency said in a statement.
Values in Auckland jumped 20.4 per cent over the same period to $874,851, outpacing a 13.9 per cent rise in the national average value for urban areas to $637,912.
Demand for housing in Auckland, where migrants and investors are adding to competition for a shortage of housing stock, is increasingly driving activity outside Auckland and into other parts of the upper North Island.
"High prices and lower yields in the Auckland market appear to be encouraging investors to look to regional centres around the country for investment properties," QV national spokeswoman Andrea Rush said.
"The new rules set to come in over the next couple of months requiring a 30 per cent deposit for investment property in the Auckland region and a softening of the LVR (loan to value ratio) for the regions may also be factors incentivising this activity."
QV figures show more than 2,000 homes in Auckland were bought and sold multiple times in the past 12 months, which the valuer said points to speculators pushing up the real estate market.
"There is continued evidence of high levels of speculation in the Auckland market and we are seeing more examples of price taking where the same properties are selling two or three times in a one-year period," said Jan O'Donoghue, QV's northern home value operations manager.
"Rapid on-selling can be a sign some speculators may believe we are close to reaching the top of the market and decide they have made enough profit."
Speculation has spread to local regions.
Hamilton's property values have gained 10.3 per cent over the past year to an average $400,811. Tauranga values advanced 8.6 per cent in the year to $493,054.
Wellington values increased 2.4 per cent to $546,914, while Christchurch rose 3.1 per cent to $476,317 and Dunedin gained 3.7 per cent to $299,508.