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Real Estate Briefing 16.Mar 2012

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Douglas PorterHome sales in Canada climbed 1.4 per cent in February from a year earlier, winning back some earlier slippage and indicating a fairly balanced market. But for what BMO Nesbitt Burns dubbed the “Toronto tornado.”
Overall, the number of new listings rose faster than sales, at 1.9 per cent, the Canadian Real Estate Association said today, while the sales-to-new listings ratio held steady. New listings are now at their highest level since May, 2010………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Louis Gagnon“Canadians ought to put themselves in risk management mode,” urges Queen’s University finance professor Louis Gagnon. The professor is adding his voice to the chorus urging the federal government to make it tougher for marginal buyers to get into the Canadian housing market.
At the same time, people across the country should be lightening their heavy debt loads to avoid a shock when interest rates rise………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Overseas investors are snapping up properties in Canada’s largest cities, driving up prices and pushing ordinary Canadians out of the housing market, observers say. Real estate experts call it the “new reality,” and the high price paid for a north Toronto bungalow is the latest evidence.
This month, the three-bedroom bungalow, circa the 1960s and without much updating, sold for $421,800 over the asking price, creating a buzz among agents and other buyers………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

American property prices are finally on the way back up. Move now to bag the best bargains. The National Association of Realtors, an umbrella organisation for estate agents, predicts that sales of new homes will rise from 305,000 last year to 351,000 in 2012, while the number of new homes to be built will go up from 599,000 in 2011 to 702,000 this year.
“This is the longest period of sustained improvement we’ve seen since 2007,” says David Crowe, the chief economist of the US National Association of Housebuilders………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

The housing market in the U.S. is showing some signs of recovery and if the trend continues, investors will be looking for opportunities.
“The housing market is showing some evidence of stabilization and even improvement in the U.S.,” said Dan Kelley, the portfolio manager of the Fidelity Trend fund. “And with a reduction in inventory and an appreciation of rental rates across many markets, investors are taking another look and recognizing the value proposition the sector can provide.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Since the housing bust of 2008, a new reality has set in when it comes to the dream of home ownership. For the first time this century, we have a younger generation that may not do as well as its parents did. A generation that questions if the financial stability and peace of mind that home ownership brings can be theirs, as it was for generations prior.
The beginning of 2012 has brought some hope to the situation, but we are still a ways off from recovery. In January, U.S. housing prices — on average — dropped to their lowest in more than a decade………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

A U.S. housing regulator moved Thursday to restrict home builders from imposing a controversial fee on property transactions that critics call unfair to buyers, a move that all but bans those fees from the housing market.
The Federal Housing Finance Agency said it would bar government-controlled mortgage-finance companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from purchasing mortgages that require the payment of “private transfer fees.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

South Florida real estate developer Martin Margulies has been sitting on prime ocean-front property for five years, waiting for the condo market to rise from the grave. When the market here crashed in 2007, amid overzealous speculators and an abundance of cheap and easy credit, condo construction ground to a halt.
The joke had been that the unofficial bird of Miami was the crane, but that bird flew the coop. Apparently it is now swooping back in………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Economic instability is clearly affecting the choice and mood of European real estate professionals, according to the latest RICS and Macdonald & Company European Property Market Remuneration survey.
Though only 22% of respondents expect an increase in economic activity over the next 12 months, the majority is satisfied with their current employer and salary. The survey shows that although there were no more pay cuts than last year (8%), only 31% of professionals interviewed received a salary increase in 2011, which on average was 8.4% down from 11.1% the previous year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

The UK property market appears to now be stabilising after several years of uncertainty and considerable price falls, it has been revealed. Liam Bailey, head of residential research at global residential and commercial property consultancy Knight Frank, said over the last six months, house prices across the UK have fallen quite sharply, but many now believe the worst could be over for the time being.
He commented: “There is no doubt that the mortgage lenders have certainly put some more money into the sector………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

A boom in prime residential property in London has allowed Savills to increase revenues and profits despite a slowdown in the UK commercial property market and Asia.
Revenues improved 7pc to £721.5m, while pre-tax profits rose 9pc to £40m at the property agent in 2011. The up-market estate agent said today that profits in its residential business advanced 11pc as it benefited from overseas investors targeting prime developments such as One Hyde Park………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

London’s City and West End markets both witnessed increased activity from overseas investors during 2011, which is set to continue throughout 2012 as the UK capital retains its ‘safe-haven’ status, according to property adviser Savills.
The firm said that non-domestic investors accounted for 64% and 60% of total turnover in the City and West End markets respectively, which is above average compared to previous years………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Norway is moving closer to a housing bubble as the central bank’s strategy of cutting interest rates to weaken the krone spurs credit growth and bloats property values.
A day after Norway’s financial regulator said the biggest domestic threat to the economy comes from an overheated property market as borrowers bet rates will stay low, Norges Bank Governor Oeystein Olsen on March 14 demonstrated he won’t allow further krone gains by cutting the bank’s main interest rate a quarter of a percentage point to 1.5 percent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Spanish house prices tumbled at their fastest pace on record in the fourth quarter, a sign that a long-running property bust will continue to weigh on Spanish households and banks.
House prices fell on average by 11.2% in the fourth quarter from the same period a year earlier, well below the 7.4% decline in the third quarter, while prices of used homes was down 13.7% in the period, the country’s statistics agency INE said Thursday………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Frank Øland, European analyst at Denmark’s Danske Bank, has warned of the risks associated with Spain’s imploding property market.
House prices in Spain dropped -4.2% in the last quarter of 2011, Øland said - the biggest fall ever. The challenge for the market is that there are still no sign of stabilisation in the country’s housing market, and there is unlikely to be this year as the macroeconomic environment remains poor………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

A glut of property supply in Dubai contributed to the steepest fall in consumer prices since records began four years ago, as a housing bubble that burst in 2009 continued to be felt in the wider economy, data showed.
Consumer prices in Dubai fell 1.7 percent on an annual basis in February, as an inflow of new residential units pushed rents down. “There might be some areas in Dubai where prices are picking up, but there is still an excess in supply in the market,” said Liz Martins, senior economist at HSBC in Dubai………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

China’s negative real deposit rates for households have led to an overweight investment in residential housing that must be reexamined if the country is to sustain economic growth, an economist said Wednesday.
Nicholas Lardy, a senior fellow at the Washington-based think tank Peterson Institute for International Economics, said that China’s negative real deposit rates — as nominal interest rates are below inflation — since 2004 have made investments in banks unattractive for households………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

If property prices are anything to go by, China might have hit a bump in the road to becoming the world’s biggest economy. For the last few years, the Chinese economy has been booming, as corporate growth, rising property prices and an expanding middle class have fuelled an incessant upward trend in the country.
Some experts are concerned that this streak may be coming to an end as property values in high-profile cities like Shenzhen begin to sink. But does the abrupt change in values signal the start of an economic collapse?……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Unfazed by the uncertain economic outlook and the hefty additional buyer stamp duties (ABSD) imposed since December, buyers turned out in force to snap up new private homes last month, as sales momentum continued to surge after rising sharply in January.
A total of 2,413 new private homes were sold in February, up almost 29 per cent from the previous month, and the highest number since July 2009, the Urban Redevelopment Authority said yesterday. Including Executive Condominiums, a total of 3,138 new homes were sold last month, up 51 per cent from January………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Leasing activity in the private residential market is expected to slow this year as the uncertain economic outlook causes companies to be more cautious in hiring expatriates.
But there may be some leasing opportunities arising from recent property market cooling measures, particularly December’s announcement of the 10 per cent additional buyer’s stamp duty (ABSD) on foreigners who purchase private homes………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Real estate in Vietnam never has been a hot market for most Asia-Pacific investors. Players from Singapore and South Korea used to be the most visible property investors in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.
That’s changing now that Japanese money men are starting to enter Vietnamese markets. Regardless of the global financial crisis, Vietnam still ranks fourth among the most attractive emerging markets to foreign investors, according to the Association of Foreign Investors in Real Estate (AFIRE)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

Australian homeowners sidestepped the worst of the global financial crisis as the country’s housing market held up well. But the party looks close to an end.
Despite the country’s resource riches, the economy is faltering. Corporate profits are down and the unemployment rate is worsening. When commodity prices dropped in the fourth quarter, growth in gross domestic product disappointed………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

BOS International, an Australian unit of Lloyds Banking Group Plc (LLOY), plans to exit the market for commercial property after selling distressed loans with a face value of A$2.1 billion ($2.2 billion), a person familiar with the matter said.
The sales began last week and will take several months to complete, according to the person, asking not to be identified because the details are private. The loan portfolio is linked to properties in the states of Queensland, New South Wales, Canberra and Victoria, the person said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

New Zealand’s property market is continuing to strengthen as latest figures show a rise in sales and prices. New data from the Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ) for February revealed that the sales volume was up to 6,168 in the residential housing market … a 37% (1,666) increase year-on-year.
Home prices are also up according to data from the second month. The national median price was $355,000, up 1.4% compared to February 2011………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Posted on 16 March 2012 by Laxman |  Email |Print

House price growth recently fell to its weakest point in more than two years, and is unlikely to improve in the near future, according to Knight Frank.
Its global index shows that in the fourth quarter of 2011 capital growth reached its lowest ebb since Q2 2009………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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