First-home buyers are holding their own in the property market, despite a falling number of sales.
New data from CoreLogic shows first-home buyers are now 22 per cent of the market across the country, up from a low of 18 per cent in the first quarter of 2014.
It comes after Real Estate Institute statistics showed the number of sales overall had fallen 26.2 per cent year-on-year nationwide, to the lowest number in a month of September for six years.
Investors make up 39 per cent of all sales.
In Auckland, first-home buyers are 23 per cent of the market – investors 41 per cent.
The percentage of homes selling to people who are moving from one house that they have owned to another has dropped across the country, to 27 per cent from 30 per cent 10 years ago.
CoreLogic head of research Nick Goodall said first-home buyers' market share might have stayed more constant than other buyer types because they were more willing to make sacrifices to get into the property market.
"They might sacrifice location, instead of buying in their ideal area they might look further out of town or in less desirable suburbs , they might be willing to buy a townhouse-type place instead of a standalone house. They tend to find a way into the market based on whatever they can get."
Banks might prioritise first-home buyers' loan applications over those from investors, he said, because first-home buyers were seen to be lower risk.
During downturns, they were more willing to hold on and less likely to bail out of a property at a loss.
Reserve Bank data shows there was $740 million in new lending to first-home buyers in August, compared to $1.125 billion to investors.