Greece posts sec­ond-steep­est drop in house prices in all of EU

Kathimerini English - - Front Page - BY NIKOS ROUSSANOGLOU

The Greek hous­ing mar­ket posted the sec­ond-worst per­for­mance among Euro­pean Union coun­tries in the third quar­ter of 2013, as ac­cord­ing to Bank of Greece data prices fell at an an­nual rate of 9.2 per­cent fol­low­ing five years of de­cline. Euro­stat an­nounced yes­ter­day that Greece was only sec­ond to new EU mem­ber Croa­tia in terms of the drop in house prices.

At the same time a slow­down was ob­served in the rate of de­cline across the eu­ro­zone, with the av­er­age fall com­ing to just 1.3 per­cent in Q3 com­pared to an an­nual slide of 2.4 per­cent in the sec­ond quar­ter. Across the EU the drop amounted to no more than 0.5 per­cent.

The Greek prop­erty mar­ket pic­ture is un­likely to change in the next few months, even though the to­tal price de­crease has reached 32 per­cent across the coun­try since the start of the fi­nan­cial cri­sis.

Bank of Greece data pub­lished in a re­cent re­port point to an av­er­age wait­ing time of 12 months from when prop­er­ties are put on the mar­ket to the ac­tual sale, com­pared with just five months in 2009. The sit­u­a­tion in the lo­cal mar­ket is rapidly de­te­ri­o­rat­ing, as it was only two months ear­lier that the coun­try’s cen­tral bank had es-

pub­lished in a re­cent re­port show buy­ers are able to ne­go­ti­ate 21.5 per­cent off the ask­ing price, while in early 2009 the dif­fer­ence was just 12.6 per­cent. ti­mated the av­er­age wait­ing pe­riod be­fore a house is sold at 10 months.

Sim­i­larly, on av­er­age, buy­ers are able to ne­go­ti­ate 21.5 per­cent off the ask­ing price, while in early 2009 the dif­fer­ence was just 12.6 per­cent.

The Bank of Greece noted that the mar­ket con­tin­ues to be domi- nated by ex­ces­sive sup­ply and a con­sid­er­able de­cline in de­mand, which should be at­trib­uted to the ma­jor in­crease in un­em­ploy­ment and the re­duc­tion in house­holds’ dis­pos­able in­comes, the rise in prop­erty taxes, the in­sta­bil­ity of the tax frame­work and the lack of cash flow given banks’ very strict loan terms.

Bank of Greece data

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