House prices con­tinue to slide

Kathimerini English - - Focus - BY NIKOS ROUSSANOGLOU

Res­i­den­tial prop­er­typrices re­mained on a down­ward course in the third quar­ter of the year, as ac­cord­ing to Bank of Greece data re­leased yes­ter­day the av­er­age price dropped by 7 per­cent on an an­nual ba­sis and com­pleted a 7.8 per­cent to­tal de­cline in the first nine months of the year.

Prop­erty sur­veys con­ducted by banks for mort­gage pur­poses amounted to just 4,219 in the Ju­lySeptem­ber pe­riod – i.e. 6.1 per­cent fewer than in the same quar­ter in 2013. This means that there were even fewer trans­ac­tions as prop­erty sur­vey­ing con­cerns not only new mort­gage loan is­sues but also the re­fi­nanc­ing of some ex­ist­ing loans.

The cen­tral bank has also down­wardly re­vised the data for the first two quarters of the year, as well as fig­ures for 2013, which is ev­i­dence of the neg­a­tive course of the hous­ing mar­ket. The re­vised fig­ures show that an an­nual de­cline of 10.9 per­cent was recorded in home prices last year (up from an orig­i­nal es­ti­mate for 10.3 per­cent), while prices dropped 8.8 per­cent year-onyear in this year’s first quar­ter (from 7.5 per­cent) and in the sec­ond quar­ter the re­vised de­cline came to 7.7 per­cent (from 7.3 per­cent).

The drop in the prices of newly built homes (aged up to five years) reached 6.1 per­cent, while older prop­er­ties saw their prices drop by 7.5 per­cent in the third quar­ter. In the year to end-Septem­ber the prices of new houses dropped 7.1 per­cent while for older ones the drop was 8.3 per­cent from the same pe­riod in 2013.

In ge­o­graph­i­cal terms Athens has seen a con­sid­er­ably big­ger de­cline than in other main ci­ties, amount­ing to 9 per­cent on a yearly ba­sis in July-Septem­ber, while the drop in Thes­sa­loniki came to 6.5 per­cent, in other ma­jor ci­ties to 5.5 per­cent and in the rest of the coun­try to 4.6 per­cent.

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