New Zealand Property Investors' Federation

The NZPIF is the umbrella body for 17 local Property Investors' Associations throughout New Zealand.

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Confidence in property returning

Property is still considered the best investment option in the current market, despite its appeal taking a hit over the past three months, according to the latest ASB Investor Confidence survey.

Tracking marginally ahead of bank savings in popularity, a net 16% felt that property was the safest place to invest. Of those who already have rentals as their main form of investment, 57% believe it will offer the best return in the coming 12 months.

The traditional safe-havens in uncertain times, rental property, bank savings and term deposits, still topped the list of where investors felt returns would be best, despite all three areas' popularity ebbing over the past three months.

"While bank saving, at 15%, is the second most popular investment, of those people who held bank savings as their main investment, only 32% felt it would offer the best returns over the next year," ASB chief economist Nick Tuffley says.

The survey shows a record turnaround in sentiment, as investor confidence hit a new two-year high, although investors seem to be at a crossroads as to what path will be best.

"While an appetite to accept a little more risk has come with this return in confidence in the economy, people are still weighing up their options," Tuffley says.

In September, a net 14% of people surveyed expected a better return on their investments in the coming 12 months, a net 25 point turnaround in the space of only three months - the largest change in quarterly confidence in the survey's 11-year history.

"There has been a huge reversal in confidence since March 2009 with a dramatic net 39% improvement being recorded," Tuffley says. "This rise in confidence has been greater than the level by which it fell following the world economic collapse in late 2008 (a 28% fall in six months)."