New Zealand House Price Rise Slows
New Zealand’s house prices are still rising, though the rate of growth has slowed, according to figures released by the QV Residential Price Movement Index. Although values continued to rise, the rate of that growth was slowing, according to QV’s national spokesperson Andrea Rush. The picture of growth in capital areas and stagnation elsewhere is familiar – in New Zealand, Auckland, Christchurch and Dunedin saw values rise while they flat lined or fell elsewhere in the country.
Spain’s Toxic Banks are Buying Property
The property portfolios of Spain’s ‘toxic’ banks have continued to grow at a rate some commentators are calling ‘alarming.’ In the first two quarters of 2014, the 13 largest financial institutions in Spain held €90.2bn in property assets – a €6.1bn increase from last year.
The distinguishing feature of a ‘toxic’ asset is that its value has become so low that there is no longer a functional market for it, so that it cannot be sold at any price the seller would accept. Currently, the most toxic asset in the Spanish real estate market is land.
Prior to 2014, Spanish banks had toxic land assets of €35bn – and they have added a further €1.5bn over the last six months. The stream of toxic assets has also been swelled by the repossessed properties of those who cannot afford their mortgages – and distressed properties have risen to €1.4bn this year.
The three worst Spanish banks for toxic real estate assets are La Caixa, Banco Popular, BBVA and Banco Sabadell.
California’s Property Prices to Halt in 2015
Newly released data from the California Association of Realtors (CAR) predicts that home prices in California will stall in 2015. CAR says that because more homes are becoming available in California, the state’s housing market will see less activity from investors and a return to traditional home buying patterns as families and individuals bid to become owner-occupiers. ‘Next year,’ says CAR president Kevin Brown, ‘home price gains will slow, allowing would-be buyers who have been saving for a down payment to be in a better financial position to make a home purchase.’
North American Ski Property Prices Heading Up
The Rockies right next door are seeing booming growth, though. America’s ski property is seeing strong price growth as the continent outperforms Europe significantly – prices rose 1% in Europe in the 12 months to June 2014, but 13.3% in North America during the same period, says Knight Frank. Aspen, in Colorado, saw the highest rise, of 20.7% - but despite this uptick luxury ski properties remain some 9.9% below their pre-crash peak.
Abu Dhabi Sees Rent and Price Rises
Home prices and rents both rose in the third quarter, according to property broker CBRE. Average rents rose by 12% between January and June after the rent cap in Abu Dhabi was lifted. Sales prices rose earlier in the year too, seeing 3% growth month on month to the end of September after sluggish growth in the previous two quarters. However, rent increases have slowed, while sales price increases have accelerated.
Chennai Still India’s Most Resilient Residential Market
The Chennai residential market remains India’s most resilient, according to Knight Frank. The firm says new infrastructure projects including an Outer Ring Road and the expansion of the Chennai Metro Rail system will lead to new property growth corridors in the future.
Hitendra Gupta, a research consultant for Knight Frank India, says that Chennai’s success is a result of affordable pricing, better employment prospects and improvement in social infrastructure.
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