Trends continue in latest property data

17 November 2016

Land Information New Zealand’s (LINZ) latest figures on property transfers and tax residency show similar trends to previous reports.

Released each quarter, the figures are gathered by LINZ for property tax purposes.

“These figures are not a register of foreign ownership. Instead they can tell us about the tax residency of buyers and sellers, and the level of transfers involving homes,” says LINZ Deputy Chief Executive Russell Turner.

Overall transfers

“Levels of property transfers involving overseas tax residents have remained consistent in these figures so far. Of the 53,991 total transfers over this time, 3 percent involved buyers with overseas tax residency – the same as in the first two quarters of the year.”

Of the remaining transfers over July-September:

  • 60 percent of transfers involved buyers who have only New Zealand tax residency. This is the same as the April to June quarter. For the January to March quarter, it was 50 percent.
  • 37 percent involved buyers who did not need to provide tax information – the majority of these were New Zealand citizens or residents who are buying their main home. This is the same as both previous quarters.

These figures include trusts and companies.

Transfers involving a home on the land

Mr Turner says that to help find out more about property transfers in New Zealand, buyers and sellers are also asked to provide information about their citizenship or visa status.

“This shows that for properties where there’s a home on the land, approximately 1029 transfers (2 percent) involved buyers who were not New Zealand citizens, residents nor held visas that allowed them to live here. Approximately 36756 (79%) involved buyers who were New Zealand citizens, residents or visa holders, and approximately 8916 (19%) involved trust companies or businesses.”

Read the latest report on property transfer and tax residency on the LINZ website

Key figures 2016


Jan-Mar 2016

Apr-Jun 2016

July- Sept 2016

Overall number of Transfers




Number and percentage of transfers involving overseas tax resident buyers

(incl trusts, companies and businesses as well as individuals)

1158 (3 percent)

1749 (3 percent)

1431 (3 percent)

Number and percentage of transfers involving overseas tax resident sellers

(incl trusts, companies and businesses as well as individuals)

1062 (2 percent)

1560 (3 percent)

1503 (3 percent)

Number and percentage of Auckland transfers involving overseas tax resident buyers

(incl trusts, companies and businesses as well as individuals)

474 (4 percent)

900 (5 percent)

648 (4 percent)

LINZ also asked home buyers and sellers whether they or their immediate families were work or student visa holders and, if so, if they intended to live on their land. 

The results to this question are inaccurate and should not be used as 42% of those who answered as if they held a work or student visa, also claimed the main home exemption (that is only available to New Zealand citizens and residents).

We are working on improvements to the way we gather this information so it will be useful in future reports. For transparency, we have shared the results as well as more information on this in the appendix of this report. 

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