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Real Estate Briefing - Archive | February, 2013

China’s riskiest property market just collapsed. Is this how it starts?

Posted on 26 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The real estate market in Phoenix Island, a development project in the Chinese island province of Hainan, was so inflated, so outrageously expensive and unsustainable, that it became known as the Dubai of China. With its palm tree-lined streets, glimmering high-rises and ostentatious sports cars, it even looked a little like Dubai.
And now, also like Dubai but maybe more in the vein of south Florida, the Phoenix Island real estate market that drove so much local economic growth has imploded………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Is China’s property market topping out?

Posted on 26 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

China’s economy has only just turned the corner after seven consecutive quarters of slowing growth, but people are already looking for signs of overheating. A key worry is the housing market. Unable to easily move their money overseas and distrustful of the stock market, Chinese households have tended to dump cash into real estate when the economy is doing well.
“People have so much money they don’t know where to put it,” J.P. Morgan’s Jing Ulrich told an audience of journalists on Feb. 25. “Property prices are a reflection of overall liquidity in the system.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

China and Hong Kong: Market forces mean home prices are likely to carry on climbing

Posted on 26 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Despite the government’s efforts, demand is still too strong to cool down the property market. When will property prices stop rising? That was the question a colleague asked when she was editing my report about Hong Kong property prices setting new records on three consecutive weeks this month.
It is also a question on the minds of many people who are not convinced that the new round of cooling measures introduced by the government last Friday is going to rein in the record-setting advance of prices………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Hong Kong property sales fall on fresh housing curbs

Posted on 26 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Real estate agents in Hong Kong are reporting that its government’s latest measures to rein in one of the world’s most exuberant property markets had been an overnight success. After Friday’s announcement by the special administrative region’s administration that it is imposing higher stamp duties on property transactions along with home loan curbs, buying activity fell drastically over the weekend.
On Friday (February 22), Hong Kong government officials announced a new round of measures to stabilise the SAR’s housing market and overall financial system………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Singapore to raise property tax rates for luxury homeowners

Posted on 26 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Singapore plans to raise property levies for luxury homeowners as it seeks to tax wealthy residents in the island-state after the government imposed more measures to curb property speculation last month.
The higher tax will apply to the top 1 percent of homeowners who live in their own residences, or 12,000 properties, Singapore Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam said in his budget speech yesterday, without giving a definition of what constitutes a high-end home. The government will also raise tax rates for vacant investment properties or those that are rented out, he said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

S. Koreans demand stable prices, housing market from government: poll

Posted on 26 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Stable consumer prices and housing market are what South Korean people demand the most from its government, central bank poll showed Monday. According to a survey of 2,119 households conducted by the Bank of Korea (BOK) between Dec. 3 and 28, more than 40 percent of respondents said the government should set its top priority at stable consumer prices and housing prices when implementing economic policy.
Around 30 percent demanded economic growth from the government, while about 20 percent replied that the administration should take measures to create more jobs………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Unlocking of housing market gets going

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The house party may just be getting started. The recovery in housing that began taking hold last year caught most economists by surprise. Even though the overall economy made only middling progress, even though there was still a mess of homeowners underwater on their mortgages and even though banks remained reticent about lending to would-bebuyers, sales and prices picked up.
The welter of housing reports slated forthis week—January new-home sales and December home-price indexes are due on Tuesday, January pending home sales come Wednesday, and January construction spending is out Friday—should reflect further improvement in the sector………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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4 current myths about the real estate market

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

There’s a lot of chatter about the real estate market. A lot of people are saying the housing recovery is moving full steam ahead. Then there are others who warn we’re getting into another housing bubble, which could end disastrously once again. Still others say — no, wait! — a housing slowdown is imminent.
A lot remains to be seen, but some common talking points have emerged — and they aren’t necessarily true. Here are four myths about the real estate market that a lot of people buy into:……………………………………….Full Article: Source

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Is it safe to sell your house now?

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

It might finally be time to come out of the basement. Seven years after the housing market began to collapse, rising prices and thinner inventories are presenting new opportunities for home sellers. Some hot markets are even seeing multiple offers for the same property—a phenomenon rarely seen since the boom years—as buyers become more confident and seek to take advantage of today’s near-record-low mortgage rates.
Home prices nationally climbed 8.3% in December from the same period a year earlier, according to CoreLogic, a real-estate analytics company………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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Bernanke’s stimulus spurring U.S. employment in housing

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke has something to tout before Congress in hearings this week: job growth in the auto and housing industries.
Consumers rely on loans to buy cars and homes, so these segments of the economy are among the most responsive to Bernanke’s strategy of holding interest rates low and pressing on with bond purchases of $85 billion a month………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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Signs of recovery in British housing

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

From the start of 2013 there have been some positive signs of recovery in residential property market in various parts of the country and particularly in the capital city where the central London areas remain in great demand.
Analysts report that last month was the best January for the past two years and according to a survey compiled by property analysts, Hometrack, 79 per cent of estate agents are more upbeat about the market than they were last year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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Britain’s housebuilders get back on the ladder to a boom

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

As Britain’s housebuilders prepare for their latest round of results, the City expects them once again to report a fresh rise in profits. And yet ahead of this week’s updates, there is change in the air. For the first time in a long time, the sector’s recovery may at last be being mirrored by the wider market. Whisper it, but the talk is that we could be seeing the start of a housing market resurgence.
As in previous months, the companies’ results will continue to spell out the sector’s upbeat story of repaired profit margins, as the companies build on land they bought more cheaply after the housing crash, move away from city-centre flats to family homes, and continue to increase their sales from a very depressed base………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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UK farm land values reach record highs

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

UK Farm land values reached new record levels ending the year at an average of £21,053 per hectare and £8,520 per acre, according to the latest figures to be published. Agricultural land value growth over the long term exceeded residential house prices, FTSE 100 and 10 year gilt yield, says the snapshot report from Chesterton Humberts.
The firm says that sustained buyer demand and limited availability is driving price growth and farm land values are set to rise by 6% per annum over the next five years………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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Riyadh completes regulations for new mortgage law

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Saudi Arabia issued final regulations on real estate financing, leasing and supervision of financial firms as the kingdom works to ease a housing shortage by opening up its mortgage market and enacting the country’s first home-loans law. The regulations outlining three of the five laws that make up the package of changes were posted Sunday on the website of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency.
Rules on the enforcement of foreclosures and mortgage registrations have yet to be completed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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Real estate investments rose to 45 pct in Makkah in 2012

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

There is no doubt that Saudi Arabia’s real estate sector is poised to witness a boom in offering tremendous growth opportunities this year. This is due to the much-anticipated approval of the mortgage law, implementation of affordable housing projects and growth of the hotel and hospitality sector, as the industry further taps into religious tourism, which is expected to contribute to sector growth of more than 20 percent in 2013 alone.
It is for this reason that this year’s Cityscape Jeddah assumes importance……………………………………….Full Article: Source

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Cash is king in Dubai’s real estate market

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Cash accounts for 70-80 percent of property transactions in Dubai, according to the industry. That equates to $30-33 billion in real money splashed across the emirate last year.
Sam Wani, general manager of mortgage adviser Independent Finance, says the level of cash payments in Dubai real estate is extraordinary compared to the rest of the world………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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India: Real estate growth to continue on city fringes

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Even as Kolkata might remain bereft of mega housing projects due to paucity of land, small parcels of development is likely to keep the real estate sector moving in the city.
Kolkata and its fringes are likely to see a multitude of small housing projects in areas like Rajarhat, E M Bypass, Diamond Harbor, Garia and Kona Expressway over the next twelve to eighteen months, according to developers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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China’s property market heats up

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Property prices ticked up last month in many Chinese cities, raising the chances of further government action to cool the housing market. Prices jumped in 54 of the 70 cities tracked by the government in January, according to data released Friday by the National Bureau of Statistics.
The average price change was an increase of 0.6%, the first year-on-year acceleration in 11 months. Compared to the previous month, prices rose 0.5%, which is the fastest rate of growth since January 2011, according to economists at Nomura………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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Hong Kong takes steps to avert real estate bubble

Posted on 25 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Hong Kong is raising stamp duties and trying to restrict home loans, officials said Friday, to cool down a real estate market that has some of the most expensive apartments in the world.
Financial Secretary John Tsang said “exuberance has regained momentum” in the Hong Kong market, and for this reason stamp duties for apartments would be increased across the board for most buyers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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Housing: It’s becoming a seller’s market

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The National Association of Realtors said on Thursday what home buyers in many parts of the United States have known for months: it’s becoming a seller’s market. The number of homes listed for sale in January fell by 4.9%, leaving 1.74 million properties on the market. That’s the lowest since December of 1999, when there were 1.71 million homes on the market. By contrast, there were 2.91 million homes on the market two years ago at this time.
After adjusting for seasonal factors, home sales rose by just 0.4% in January, to an annual rate of 4.92 million units. Still, that’s up from 9.1% one year ago……………………………………Full Article: Source

US housing market gathers steam after January home sales increase

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Existing home sales rise by 0.4% to 4.92 million, adding momentum to recovery from effects of 2007-09 recession. US home resales edged higher in January and left the supply of homes at its lowest level in 13 years, a sign that steam is gathering in the US housing market.
The National Association of Realtors said on Thursday that existing home sales rose 0.4% last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.92 million units. That was the second highest rate of sales since November 2009, when a federal tax credit for home buyers was due to expire. Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast a 4.9 million-unit rate……………………………………Full Article: Source

US housing starts dip but remain at solid pace

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

U.S. homebuilders began work at a slower pace in January than in December. But all of the drop occurred in the volatile area of apartment construction, which sank 24 percent. By contrast, the rate of single-family homebuilding rose 0.8 percent.
Even with the overall decline, the pace of home construction in January was the third-highest since 2008 and was evidence of continued strengthening in residential real estate. And in an encouraging sign for the rest of the year, applications for building permits, a signal of future construction, topped December’s rate. Applications for permits are at their highest point since mid-2008……………………………………Full Article: Source

A Phoenix housing boom forms, in hint of U.S. recovery

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The housing market in Phoenix presaged and magnified the collapse in real estate. Now its recovery could reveal much about the prospects for a nationwide turnaround. Mortgage rates are low everywhere. In many places, so too is inventory.
Home prices increased in 88 percent of metropolitan areas around the country in the last three months of 2012, including Las Vegas, Miami, and even Detroit, according to the National Association of Realtors……………………………………Full Article: Source

Washington, D.C. apartment market outlook bright, despite troubling trends

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

For the Washington, D.C metro apartment market, 2012 was a good year, but the outlook for 2013 and beyond may be affected by some troubling trends, not to mention the drama unfolding within the federal government.
As of December 2012, the Class A stabilized vacancy rate for the Washington metro apartment market was a mere 4.2%, down from 5.0% the year before, according to a 2012 year-end Mid-Atlantic Class A apartment market report put out by Alexandria, Virginia-based Delta Associates……………………………………Full Article: Source

Commercial real estate forecast update: 2013-2014

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Commercial real estate continues to improve at a moderate pace, much in line with our previous forecast update from six months ago. The office market enjoyed “11 consecutive quarters of occupancy growth and eight straight quarters of rent increases,” according to the Jones Lang LaSalle firm.
The length of the expansion is more noticeable than the strength of the expansion. REIS Inc. reported national figures for office vacancy that are only slightly lower than a year ago. Jones Lang LaSalle also reported that most of the improvement is in Class A space, which confirms the anecdotes I’ve been hearing as I travel around the country: the only challenge for tenants is finding large contiguous Class A spaces in downtown areas……………………………………Full Article: Source

C&W: London regains worlds most expensive office market crown

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

London’s West End is the world’s most expensive office market once again after regaining its crown from Hong Kong’s Central Business District (CBD), according to research published today in Cushman & Wakefield’s ‘Office Space Across the World 2013′.
The report highlights the scarcity of quality space in London which has increased competition and consequently inflated office rents by 2% in the West End to make them the most expensive in the world……………………………………Full Article: Source

Scotland’s housing market remains ‘muted’, says bank report

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Scotland’s housing market remains “muted”, with only a slight rise in prices over the last year, according to a report from Lloyds TSB Scotland. The average price of a property rose by 0.2% to £151,320 during 2012.
But the number of sales fell towards the end of the year because of a small number of festive-period sales. The TSB’s Donald MacRae said: “The Scottish housing market had adjusted to the recession with a halving of sales and a period of price volatility.”…………………………………..Full Article: Source

India: Budget 2013: Industry status and Regulatory Bill for the real estate market

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The realty players are pinning their hopes on the forthcoming Budget 2013-14 for a much needed Regulatory Bill and attainment of Industry status. The Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Associations of India (CREDAI) - NCR and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry ( FICCI) have been rooting for the same to the government for some time now.
The cry for Industry status is being echoed this year by experts after it was left unheard in the last budget. This is of foremost importance since this will help the real estate sector to easily get finance from banks……………………………………Full Article: Source

UAE Real estate reflects optimism in 2013

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Statistics reveal that the UAE real estate market, though facing major challenges in terms of oversupply, will be showing positive signs of recovery with major projects in infrastructure and real estate in store.
According to lan Robertson, CEO, Jones Lang LaSalle MENA, “The foundations are being laid for a recovery from 2014, with a number of major infrastructure projects scheduled to start later this year. We also expect the real-estate in both Abu Dhabi and Dubai to benefit from increased economic activity between the UAE and East Asia, specifically China and South Korea, as well as sub Saharan Africa and Australia.”…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Property prices pose biggest risk to Hong Kong economy

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Just three months after Hong Kong rolled out a tough new round of property cooling measures, home prices have again climbed to record highs with demand unusually strong for new flats over the normally quiet Lunar New Year holiday break.
Hong Kong officials have stressed repeatedly that reining in the city’s property market, now one of the world’s most expensive, is a policy priority to restore affordability and to mitigate a major threat to the economy……………………………………Full Article: Source

Hong Kong property investors turn to hotel loophole

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Frustrated by dizzyingly high home prices in Hong Kong, investors are buying up something new: hotel rooms. This week, news that local developer Cheung Kong was selling all 360 units in its Apex Horizon hotel prompted hundreds of buyers to line up for the chance to plunk down cash. The units were all sold, netting the company—controlled by local billionaire Li Ka-shing—nearly $181 million.
Two-bedroom units sold for prices starting at $425,000, a good value for the area, despite rules that prohibit redecoration or other alterations to the unit, according to Ricacorp Properties’ Andy Jim. “It’s all investment,” said Mr. Jim, adding that speculators were keen to jump on a low-priced opportunity……………………………………Full Article: Source

Thailand: Real estate investment soars

Posted on 22 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Real estate investment in Thailand surged 81.8% to US$2 billion last year from $1.1 billion in 2011 as overall investment picked up on the back of strong property fund activity. As in neighbouring countries, Thailand’s investment activity was boosted by the listing of major property funds and active acquisitions, particularly in the hotel and office sectors, said the California-based property consultant DTZ, a unit of Australia’s UGL Ltd.
Transactions by listed property funds or public funds for public offering (PFPOs) totalled $1.1 billion last year, representing 55% of total investment in Thailand……………………………………Full Article: Source

Housing market in transition in Canada

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Home prices slipped in January in Canada for the fifth consecutive month, a development not entirely unwelcome, the country’s central bank governor has said. The Teranet-National Bank House Price Index showed prices down 0.3 percent in an 11-city index, the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. reported Wednesday.
Prices fell in seven of the 11 cities tracked, with the exceptions being Victoria, Halifax, Quebec City and Ottawa. Bank of Canada Gov. Mark Carney in recent remarks said, “real wealth is build through innovation, and it’s gained through hard work. It’s not through some magical asset inflation.”…………………………………..Full Article: Source

US: Housing starts fall 8.5pct in January

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Housing starts fell 8.5% in January after surging 15.7% the month before, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. The government’s report suggests home builders began work at a slower pace in 2013 than expected though the level was still the third highest since 2008. And new-home starts are likely to pick up in coming months. The number of houses built in 2012 was the most in four years.
The number disappointed analysts who had been expecting January to add on to several months of evidence the housing market rebound is gaining momentum……………………………………Full Article: Source

U.S. single-family home starts rise to four-year high

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Work began in January on the most U.S. single-family houses in over four years and permits for future projects climbed, setting the stage for construction to keep adding to economic growth in 2013.
Builders broke ground on 613,000 houses at an annualized rate last month, the most since July 2008 and up 0.8 percent from December, Commerce Department figures showed today in Washington. Total housing starts dropped to an 890,000 rate, lower than forecast and restrained by a slump in construction of multifamily units, which is often volatile……………………………………Full Article: Source

US: How to play the housing market

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Between the pent up demand and low inventory, this year is shaping up to favor sellers in the housing market—something not seen in about six years. Data from real estate website Zillow shows housing inventor y in the U.S. is down close to 18% from last year, which means competition for homes on the market is severe. Stories of bidding wars and all-cash offers are plentiful in some markets, and are forcing buyers to play offense.
“It varies by market, but in certain areas, like in the Bay Area or Orange County [in California], there is fierce competition for homes,” says Jani Strand, a spokeswoman for real estate company Redfin. “The majority of homes in areas like this are receiving multiple offers—and not just a handful—dozens in many cases.”…………………………………..Full Article: Source

U.S. Industrial real estate market enjoying a resurgence in late 2012

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The industrial real estate market is making a comeback. Net demand for warehouse space was 40.8 million square feet in fourth quarter 2012, making it the second strongest quarter since record-keeping began in 1993 at Cassidy Turley, a commercial real estate company with offices around the US.
Industrial vacancies are tightening quickly, according to a report by Cassidy Turley. In the fourth quarter, vacancies declined by 20 basis points from the previous quarter to 8.9%. The national industrial vacancy rate was at its lowest point in three years in the fourth quarter of 2012……………………………………Full Article: Source

European construction output continues to fall

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Construction output fell by 1.7% in December in the Eurozone countries and by 2.7% across all 27 countries of the EU compared with November. The figures are first estimates released by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. In November 2012, monthly production had decreased by 0.4% and 0.6% respectively.
Compared with December 2011, production in December 2012 dropped by 4.8% in the 17 countries of the Euro area and by 8.5% in the EU27. Compared with 2011, the average production index for 2012 decreased by 5.4% in the euro area and by 5.8% in the EU27……………………………………Full Article: Source

UK: An improving market? More house-sellers stick to the asking price

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Less than a third of current house sellers have knocked some cash off their asking price, in a further sign that confidence is returning to the market, a property website said. Some 31% of homes on the market have had the asking price cut, marking the lowest proportion recorded in two-and-a-half years and a sharp drop from 37% a year ago, Zoopla said.
The website suggested that sellers are becoming more likely to hold firm on their asking prices amid signs that the market is improving……………………………………Full Article: Source

Outlook for UK property market in 2013 ‘looks good’

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

2013 will be good year for the property market in the UK, following strong sales results from last year. This year could be a good one for the UK property market, as Chesterton Humberts revealed positive sales results in 2012.
The property consultants released its CHROME report, showing sales figures for property in the UK reached their highest level since 2007. It also revealed mortgage lending increased by £3 billion from 2011, which is partly the result of government initiatives to encourage banks to boost the amount they let customers borrow……………………………………Full Article: Source

Is buying a home cheaper than renting?

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

A new report says the average cost of paying off a mortgage is now £120 a month cheaper than paying rent. But is it that simple? A combination of plummeting mortgage costs and soaring monthly rents has meant that buying a home is now on average £120 cheaper than renting across the UK – and the gap has widened in the last year.
According to Halifax, the monthly costs associated with buying a three-bedroom house are now 16% lower than renting one, and this has risen from 14% in 2011. Average mortgage costs are £621 a month, compared to typical monthly rent of £741, says the bank. Over a year this amounts to a healthy saving of £1,140 for homeowners……………………………………Full Article: Source

Israel: Banks control the real estate market

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

It is the banks which are the biggest player on the field in the capital intensive real estate industry. The Government Assessor’s report that the average price of a four-room apartment rose by 5% in 2012, coming on top of the Central Bureau of Statistics report that prices rose by 6.7% last year, once again demonstrates the helplessness of policy-makers.
The banks also pump out cheap mortgages for us, at least so long as the interest rate stays low, in order to feed the housing demand monster. The banks also increase, limit, delay, and invent fees of various kinds for developers and contractors in order to control the supply and control of land purchases for new homes……………………………………Full Article: Source

CBRE: Investment in Russian office sector at an all-time high

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

According to the latest research by CBRE, in the fourth quarter of 2012 the volume of investment in Russian commercial real estate amounted to US $1.73 billion (approx. €1.28 billion).
In 2012, the office sector was the most popular, with investment volumes totaling US $2.6 billion (approx. €1.9 billion), accounting for 52% of the total volume of registered investment. In absolute volumes, investment in the office sector is at an all-time high……………………………………Full Article: Source

Middle East serviced office market sees volatility

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The serviced office market in the Middle East has been volatile in the last two years, with the number of open centres in Dubai falling by almost 30%, but growing by 72% in Abu Dhabi. These are the findings of Instant, the flexible office specialist, which says in its latest research report “Emerging Markets Serviced Office Review 2013″ that the serviced office sector of the property industry- led by the likes of Regus- is set to boom in emerging markets over the next five years, with the number of office centres forecast to double to over 1,500.
Volatility in the Middle East’s serviced office market has also been reflected in rates for individual workstations or desks. In Dubai rents for a desk fell from a high of $1,675 per month in 2008 to $900 per month in 2011. Workstation rates in Dubai currently stand at $955 and at $1,075 in Abu Dhabi. (Press Release)

China orders more cities to restrict housing purchases

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao called on local authorities to “decisively” curb real estate speculation and take steps to rein in the property market after data showed prices surged the most in two years last month.
Cities that have had “excessively fast” price gains should promptly impose home-purchase restrictions if they’ve not done so already, China said in a statement released yesterday after a State Council meeting headed by Wen. Provincial capitals and municipalities reporting directly to the central government should also publish annual price control targets to keep new- home costs “basically stable,” according to the statement……………………………………Full Article: Source

Beijing considers property tax to curb home market

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

The central government has issued a fresh warning that it will roll out a property tax trial across the nation to rein in any sharp rises in home prices. In the latest sign that it remains determined to keep the lid on prices, the State Council announced yesterday after a meeting chaired by outgoing Premier Wen Jiabao that it would stick with austerity measures to ensure healthy growth of the housing sector. The warning comes in the wake of recent price rises.
Among the measures the cabinet warned it would take was the expansion of a property tax, presently implemented only in Shanghai and Chongqing on a pilot basis, to other cities……………………………………Full Article: Source

S&P raises outlook on China property

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Standard & Poor’s raised its outlook for China’s housing sector from negative to stable, with the rating agency highlighting strong sales momentum and stable financing for developers.
The upgrade, coming less than two years after S&P cut the country’s property developers to a negative outlook, is the latest sign of a turnround in China’s real estate market that began last year……………………………………Full Article: Source

Property prices pose biggest risk to stability of Hong Kong economy

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Just three months after Hong Kong rolled out a tough new round of property cooling measures, home prices have again climbed to record highs with demand unusually strong for new flats over the normally quiet Lunar New Year holiday break.
Hong Kong officials have stressed repeatedly that reining in the city’s property market, now one of the world’s most expensive, is a policy priority to restore affordability and to mitigate a major threat to the economy of the affluent Asian financial hub……………………………………Full Article: Source

Malaysia residential property sector gets investors nod

Posted on 21 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Malaysia is set to take in a deluge of foreign investors avoiding the very high taxes in Singapore and Hong Kong. Property analysts in Kuala Lumpur are optimistic that the southeast Asian country will be the new hot spot for foreign property investors due to the newly imposed higher levies on properties in HK and Singapore.
Singaporeans, in particular, have preferred residential areas in Kuala Lumpur, Kota Kinabalu, Iskandar-Malaysia and Penang as viable alternatives for property holdings next to their city, Malaysiainsider.com reports……………………………………Full Article: Source

U.S. housing recovery just beginning: Brookfield

Posted on 20 February 2013 by Laxman  |  Email |Print

Brookfield Residential Properties Inc., the second-best performing home-building stock in the Americas over the past year, said the recovery in U.S. housing is only just starting to add to earnings.
“We’re just at the beginning” of the recovery, Brookfield Chief Executive Officer Alan Norris said in a telephone interview from Calgary, where the company is based. “If you take a look at our numbers, all of our profit is from Canada. We’re only just starting to get to the point where the U.S. is going to be contributing.”………………………………..Full Article: Source

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