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Brain vs. Computer

Brain vs. Computer

Brain vs. Computer

Technology allows us to perform tasks with more efficiency while at the same time reducing human error. A great example of this is illustrated in aviation where ‘auto pilot’ has seen a huge reduction in pilot error. In real estate, it is becoming increasingly common for buyers, lenders and advisors to rely on computer generated market valuations or ‘desktop valuations’. These were developed to replace more expensive manual valuations, such as the old GV, for both local authorities and lenders. Both groups are less concerned with the accuracy of each individual property value as they know the overall margin of error that works within their risk parameters. At present there are a number of large volume data companies, like QV, who have successfully monetised this technology by making the reports available to the public at large. The fundamental flaw for consumers relying on this information is that desktop valuations work on the basis that humans operate in a balanced frame of mind more commonly known as homo economicas. But we all know that this is not the case. From that stunning heel – just made for your outfit – to an overpriced limited edition sports car, humans go through a range of emotions during the process of buying or selling. Perhaps no more so than when buying and selling real estate. From emotional attachment, greed and fear of loss to greed, this industry has it all. But the computer does not.  A computer model cannot detect the difference between a well-presented and styled home vs. a poorly presented one. Nor does it take into account the usability of a home. This means that while two properties may have the same floor plate, one may have been architecturally designed with careful attention paid to design and specifications, while the other is boxy with plenty of wasted space. See the illustration below, both are the same size but visually one looks bigger.

Computer models aren’t purchasing real estate and if they did there would be no such thing as a housing bubble therefore any assessments should be taken as a rough guide only. Your best assessment comes from good market research or an experienced market assessor.

The Wellington Market

For those of you on the market for a new home you will have noticed there is not a lot around. This is seasonal and not likely to change until the start of September as we head into spring. If you are thinking about selling and you have a home which is warm, dry and sunny, it is the ideal time to bring it to the market. Low listing numbers and plenty of pre-qualified buyers are driving record interest levels and prices. With interest rates continuing to dip (funny how all the computer models predicted the opposite this time last year) we anticipate strong demand entering into spring.

Wellington Property Stats

July 2014July 2015
Central$ 452,000$ 395,000
Southern$ 464,250$ 564,500
Eastern$ 510,000$ 525,000
Northern$ 459,000$ 480,000
Western$ 575,000$ 572,000

Fun Flag Facts

– New Zealand first recognised flag was the “United Tribes of New Zealand”  which flew between 1834-1840.
– The union Jack flag replaced the United Tribes of NZ flag in the 1840’s  and flew until 1902.
– In 1902 during the South African war, New Zealand adopted the current iteration of the flag depicting the union jack and southern cross.

If you or anyone you know are keen on having a considered market assessment by Wellington’s only licensed agent and registered property valuer, please do not hesitate to call Ben on 021 899 851. We are always very happy to help.

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