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Estate Agents & Letting Agents in Leeds

Here you will find the latest Hudson Moody Wass and property news.

House prices set to rise despite waning confidence

Brexit has had a negative impact on sentiment but many households still expect to see property prices rise at a moderate rate, according to the latest house price sentiment index (HPSI) from Knight Frank and IHS Markit. 

The latest results from the HPSI show that households across the UK perceive that the value of their home dipped in July, with respondents in nine of the 11 regions covered by the index believing prices fell over the course of the month following the UK’s decision to exit the EU.

However, the future HPSI remains in positive territory, with many households forecasting that the value of their home will rise over the next 12 months, but at the most modest rate since October 2012.

Gráinne Gilmore, head of UK residential research at Knight Frank, said: “The impact of uncertainty in the wake of the Brexit vote is clear from the HPSI index reading for July, especially in light of the relative strength of sentiment in the run-up to the vote. Although there has been a marked drop in the index, the readings are hovering around the ‘no-change’ mark, similar to levels in 2012/2013.”

Households in the South of England are more confident about price rises than those in the North of England, Scotland or Wales.

As well as geographical variations, there are wide differences in expectations depending on age-groups, with those aged over-55 expecting the value of their home to dip over the next 12 months as well as those aged 18 to 24. All other age-groups expect prices to rise modestly.”

Tim Moore, senior economist at IHS Markit, said: “The surge in economic uncertainty after the EU referendum weighed heavily on UK house price sentiment during July. The current prices index signalled the greatest month to month loss of momentum for at least seven-and-a-half years. Despite a sizeable fall since June, the latest reading signalled that house price sentiment was at a level last seen in early 2013 and only marginally downbeat overall.

“Households across all UK regions also indicated a sharp recalibration of their property price expectations for the next 12 months, led by those living in London and the South East.”

Before the EU referendum, more than five times as many UK households - 43% - expected a year-ahead rise in property values as those that forecast a reduction (8%). By contrast, there is now a fairly even split between individuals expecting a rise in property values (26%) and those anticipating a decline over the next 12 months (23%).

More continued: “While it is too early to evaluate the full impact of the EU referendum on the UK property market, it is already clear that heightened uncertainty has cast a shadow over household sentiment. At the same time, fundamental imbalances between housing supply and demand have not changed materially, while lending conditions remain supportive. Nonetheless, a sharp jolt to consumer confidence in July has impacted swiftly on UK households’ perception of their property value, and this is also a signal that price expectations could remain highly sensitive to economic and political developments over the months ahead.”


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Ealing Council to introduce new landlord licensing scheme

Private landlords in Ealing, one of London’s largest boroughs, will soon have to obtain a licence to operate a house in multiple occupation (HMO).

Ealing Council plans to introduce two new licensing schemes in January next year in an attempt to improve standards in the private rented sector in the borough, which is home to more than 137,000 residential properties, including around 36,000 properties which are rented from private landlords in the borough.

Under existing rules, only certain larger HMOs in Ealing are covered by the existing mandatory licensing scheme.

The new scheme will apply to all HMOs that are two storeys or more and occupied by four or more people but not covered by the mandatory scheme.

In addition, the new selective licensing will apply to all privately rented homes in Acton Central, East Acton, South Acton, Southall Green and Southall Broadway wards where the council believes this type of licensing will deliver the most benefits to the community.

To obtain a licence for five years, landlords or managing agents will be required to pay a licence fee for each rented property in the designated schemes. The additional licensing fee is £1,100 for each HMO plus £30 for each habitable room and the selective licensing fee is £500.

Failure to obtain a licence may result in prosecution and an unlimited fine.

Applicants who sign up between 1 October and 31 December 2016 may be eligible to receive a 25% “early bird” discount.

Those who are already members of a recognised landlord’s accreditation scheme may also qualify for a further discount of £75.

Under the new proposals a licensed landlord will also have to comply with several conditions relating to the management and condition of the property, including gas, electrical, fire safety and other facilities provided.

A written tenancy agreement would be required and anti-social behaviour by tenants would not be permitted.

Councillor Ranjit Dheer, cabinet member for community services and safety, said: "The introduction of the additional and selective licensing schemes in Ealing will significantly reduce the number of complaints associated with private rented properties while allowing us to better protect the health, safety and welfare of tenants.

"Underlying our plans to expand our licensing schemes is the serious issue of poorly managed properties which lead to sub-standard living conditions and anti-social behaviour.

"By providing clear standards under which landlords will operate and tenants will know what to expect, we want to encourage stable, long-term tenancies that will then go on to create sustainable communities.

"All our residents deserve decent, safe homes to live in, and we are determined to drive up standards in the borough’s private rented sector.

"The new licensing schemes will give us the opportunity to achieve this and robustly tackle unscrupulous landlords."


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Lack of supply will push up cost of renting, says ARLA

Almost half of letting agents have witnessed uncertainty from landlords looking to let properties, which ‘could cause waves in the rental market over the coming months’, warns the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA).

 

The trade body reports that the private rented market has so far been unaffected by the UK’s decision to leave the EU, but it is urging the government to offer landlords reassurances that housing in the private rented sector (PRS) remains a priority or risk seeing many buy-to-let investors exit the market.

 

David Cox, managing director, ARLA, said: “The rental market has responded to Brexit in a calm fashion, with no immediate fallout amid extreme political and economic uncertainty. What we need is some certainty from the new government that housing remains a priority with the rental market playing a central role. For example, we want to avoid a situation where institutional investors start pulling away from the market because ultimately this will impact tenants by squeezing supply further and pushing up rents.

 

“Although we’ve seen some hesitation from landlords this is relatively mild and it’s important they do not act in haste. Any inevitable longer term changes will then be taken on board with greater ease.”

 

The PRS is in desperate need of more housing stock to help cater for growing demand from renters, which increased by 12% in June to 37 prospective tenants on average registered per ARLA member branch, up from 33 in May. The supply of rental properties rose by just 3% in June, from 171 in May to 176 properties on agents’ books.

 

The rental market remained stable last month, with little to no movement in terms of rental costs, but ARLA warn that will soon change unless more homes are made available.

 

Cox added: “If one thing is clear following Brexit, it’s that supply and demand remains a real issue in the rental market. If supply continues to dwindle against growing demand, no matter what the eventual implications of Brexit are, renting will become more difficult and expensive for tenants.”

 

 


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Auction success demonstrates ‘continued confidence in property’

More than 150 homes were sold under the hammer in London last week, acting as a strong indication that investor demand for residential property remains strong.

No fewer than 158 of the 214 lots offered for sales were snapped up by investors including post-aiction sales - 74% sales success – at Allsop’s latest residential auction held at the Cumberland Hotel in London which raised £51.2m.

A total of 17 lots were sold for more than £1m, including Grade I listed Bere Court in Pangbourne, Berkshire, which sold for £2.15m.

Overseas buyers were very active at the auction, as illustrated by an overseas developer which paid £4.2m for a vacant pair of mixed use buildings with planning permission to partially demolish and redevelop to create two shops and eight flats.

Auctioneer Gary Murphy commented: “As the first major residential auction post-Brexit, it was important that our sale demonstrated continued confidence in property.  Auctions are a good barometer of the market and buyers are keen to get on with business.  In fact, bidding was often as heated as the weather, as bidders and observers filled the room and escaped the heatwave outside.”

“Investors remain keen to invest and we experienced significant depth of demand for long-term opportunities. Development sites or buildings with consent for residential conversion drew particularly strong competition from UK and overseas bidders.”


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Sharp fall in property transactions post-Brexit

There has been a significant fall in property transactions across the UK which has had an adverse impact on residential property prices which have also fallen since the outcome of the EU vote, a new report claims. 

Reallymoving.com, which provides free instant online quotes for home-moving services, analysed activity among 35,000 people who registered for quotes for conveyancing, surveys and removals in the four weeks before and after the Brexit referendum, and found that overall, both property prices and transaction volumes fell by around 8% on a seasonally adjusted basis, with London, the Home Counties and Northern Ireland hardest hit.

The analysis of the UK property market shows that transaction volumes have fallen markedly, down 12% for the month post-Brexit compared to the month before. This is based on conveyancing and survey quote requests on Reallymoving.com. Although some summer seasonal decline is expected, typically around 4-5%, this is a seasonally adjusted 8% fall which is an unusually high volume drop. 

Average property prices have also fallen sharply, down by around 8% - the largest month-on-month fall for more than five years.

Looking at the breakdown in prices and transaction volumes across the UK reveals striking regional differences.  While London remains by far the highest priced region, prices have supposedly fallen 12% since Brexit, and property purchases down 44%.

 

The number of property purchases has fallen in all regions, led by London, the Home Counties and Northern Ireland, while Wales saw a drop of just 3%. 

 

Although prices fell significantly in London, the data, which should be taken with a pinch of salt, revealed that there were even bigger declines in the North East of England and Northern Ireland; both fell 17%. But prices rose by 15% in Scotland and by a more modest 7% in Wales.

 

 

According to the figures, there has been an increase in the number of people fleeing the UK post-Brexit, as reflected by a jump in international moves since Brexit, with moves away from the UK having increased by 43%. The most popular destinations for international moves from the UK have been to Spain, USA, Canada, Australia, Germany and Italy.

 

Rob Houghton, CEO of reallymoving commented: “It seems clear that Brexit has had a marked impact on the UK property market. The drop in transaction volumes has been striking, particularly in London, the Home Counties & Northern Ireland. 

 

“In the medium term we would expect volumes to pick up if the price falls are maintained, but it is clear that many prospective home movers are sitting tight until there’s greater clarity over the post-Brexit economy and our likely new relationship with the rest of the EU.”


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Retirement living in Scotland ‘an untapped opportunity’ for investors

With many housebuilders adopting a cautious approach to retirement living in Scotland, Savills has identified ‘an untapped opportunity’ for investors willing to provide new housing for the retirement sector north of the border.

Fresh research from Savills looks at how developing a collaborative and creative strategy, involving landowners, planners and developers, can help cater for this important and growing target group of homeowners, including a two-tier approach that is not solely focused on the top end of the downsizer market.

With a growing older population who have a pressing housing need and equity to invest, the company believe that not only is there a commercial opportunity, but a corporate responsibility for the planning and development sector to address this important market in Scotland.

Savills research states the number of people aged over 65 is set to increase from 550,000 to 1.4m by 2037, an increase of at least 100,000 every five years. This unprecedented level of growth will be spread geographically and will have important implications for housing across Scotland.

The findings reveal that the average transaction value in Scotland - in the year to March 2016 - was £166,624, compared to £250,000 across the UK as a whole. Therefore, whilst a considerable number of over 65s own their property outright in Scotland, it is unlikely that many people will able to release large amounts of equity.

Consequently, the challenge for those seeking to provide retirement housing in Scotland will be providing desirable properties at attainable prices. 

Savills says that a two-tier approach is required which will cater both for downsizers operating at the top end of the market, but also for more modest retirement housing.  So, although there are challenges for developers and investors in terms of value, the demographics indicate a huge untapped opportunity for the right product for the right buyer.


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Unlicensed landlords in Oldham warned to get their acts together

Landlords in Oldham must not shirk their responsibilities and legal obligations, which includes signing up to the Selective Licensing scheme or face potentially being fined. 

The warning has come from Oldham Council after it prosecuted another three ‘unlicensed’ landlords - and warned others to get certified in order to comply with local authority's initiative to improve management of properties, clampdown rogue landlords and irresponsible tenants.

It is illegal to operate a privately rented property without a licence in St Mary's; Hathershaw; Waterhead; Hollinwood; Primrose Bank and selected areas of Coldhurst, Alexandra and Oldham Edge.

A landlord will also commit a criminal offence if they fail to comply with any of the conditions of a licence granted to them.

The scheme has proved controversial after some landlords protested against the £490 per rented property fee and argued that more should be done to protect them from nuisance tenants who don't pay rent on time.

A petition signed by 150 landlords was handed to the council but the authority insists the scheme helps to improve property management and tenant behaviour.

The three landlords to be prosecuted by Oldham council were ordered to pay a total of £3,372 in fines, costs and victim surcharges after they continued to rent out properties without licences.

Rehana Aziz, of Darwin Street, Oldham, was fined £250 and ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £22 and £500 costs.

Rafit Hussain, of Waterloo Street, Oldham, was fined £500 and ordered to pay costs of £750 and a victim surcharge of £50.

Kamal Ahmed, of Waterloo Street, Oldham, was fined £500 and ordered to pay costs of £750 and a victim surcharge of £50.

Councillor Barbara Brownridge, cabinet member for neighbourhoods and co-operatives, said: "The majority of private landlords in the areas where licensing is in force are supportive of this scheme because they, like us, know the rented sector in Oldham needs to improve.

"But we are still coming across a small number who think the law doesn't apply to them. These latest prosecutions show that we will take action against landlords who flout the law.

"Some of the properties our officers have visited fail to meet the required homes standard, which can have a terrible impact on the health and welfare of tenants and the wider community.

"This scheme aims to make private landlords meet satisfactory standards of tenancy and property management.

"But it is also about tenants acting responsibly in a way that does not blight their neighbourhood and showing respect for their neighbours."


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Meeting to discuss landlord licensing in Weston-super-Mare

Landlords and tenants in Weston-super-Mare are being invited to have their say and find out more about North Somerset Council’s proposed landlord licensing scheme at a meeting this week.

The event, which will take place at the Royal Hotel, in South Parade in Weston, at 6pm this Thursday 28th June, will discuss the introduction of a new license scheme designed to improve ‘poor quality rented housing’ in Weston-super-Mare, which was slammed earlier this month for being ‘short-sighted’ and nothing short of yet another ‘money-making exercise’ at landlords’ expense.

The meeting will be hosted by the Somerset Property Network, which was recently formed by more than 50 landlords strongly opposed to the new license which will cover Central ward and part of Hillside, and cost £320 for a five-year license. For further information - click here

A spokesman for the network earlier this month bemoaned the fact that all landlords are getting ‘tarred with the same brush’, and said: “We do not need the council to tell us how to run our businesses and charge us for the privilege of doing so.

“So we have created this group for competent landlords across Somerset, where we can all get together and unite as one voice. We can also challenge the council as a united stronghold over landlord issues in the future.

“It is so short-sighted to lose landlord support as the tenant only ends up back through the council doors costing North Somerset money.”

However, Cllr Ap Rees has defended the licence which will carry a minimum standard criteria and anyone not meeting the benchmark could be prosecuted.

Rees said: “We are determined to root out rogue landlords in this area of Weston and we need to be in a position to inspect all rental properties within the selected area.

 

“To do that, we have to cover the costs. The basic charge is the cost of the license and the compliance visit.

“We accept that sometimes it isn’t the landlords, it may be the tenants that cause the damage but the only way to monitor that is to visit the property.

“Conscientious landlords have nothing to fear.”


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Holiday home rental demand soars in Spain

Those of you who have long thought about the idea of owning a dream holiday home abroad that literally pays for itself may wish to consider taking a closer look at Spain, where demand for holiday lets has increased sharply this year.

Homes along the coast are unsurprisingly proving particular popular with both Spaniards and foreign tourists, as confirmed by the latest data provided by the holiday home rental platform HomeAway.

The figures reveal that demand for holiday lets in Spain has increased across the Spanish coast, thanks in part to the fact that more Spaniards are now opting to take their vacation at home.

Local demand for holiday rental accommodation is up an annualised 52% so far this year, with 77% of enquiries made on holiday homes in Spain, and 23% for homes outside of Spain.

HomeAway analysed enquiries made by locals and foreigners to evaluate market trends this year.

Spaniards were most interested in Andalusia, accounting for 34% of enquiries, followed by the Balearics (20%), the Valencian Region (13%), Catalonia (11%), Asturias (5%), and the Canaries (4%).

“As far as the latter is concerned, the Canary Islands are best known as a winter sun destination, so the low level of enquiries for the summer holidays comes as no surprise,” said Mark Stucklin of Spanish Property Insight.

Holiday home rental demand from Spaniards has also grown strongly this year in Catalonia (+71%), Andalusia (57%), and in the Balearics (51%). The average enquiry was for a stay of eight days.

Spain was the number one international destination for enquiries made at HomeAway based on demand from other countries, with the British, Germans and Italians focused on the Balearics, whilst the French were most interested in Catalonia.

“British enquiry levels are up 78%, followed by Italy, Portugal, France, and Germany,” said Stucklin. “British interest in Mallorca was up 94%, Italian interest in Formentera up 97%, and French demand for the Costa Brava up 46%. German enquiries for Mallorca were only up 14%.”

He added: “Whilst local and foreign demand for holiday-rentals is exploding, Spanish regulators are doing everything they can to make it more difficult for second-home owners to rent their properties legally to tourists.” 


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Lewis Hamilton’s win in Hungary sparks worldwide tour

Following Lewis Hamilton’s comfortable victory at the Hungarian Grand Prix on Sunday, we delve into the fast lane to take you on a whirlwind tour around this season’s Formula 1 circuits across the globe, offering a brief insight into the current state of the property market in each destination along the way. 

Australia

The first race of this F1 season is traditionally held at Albert Park in Melbourne, after moving from the Adelaide Street Circuit in 1995, which had played host to the annual event for a decade from 1985. 

Much like Lewis Hamilton’s recent form, property prices in Melbourne show no signs of abating, with the average price of a home in the city in the three months to June surging by 3.5%, according to CoreLogic’s latest house price index. 

Homebuyer demand has been supported by a good level of affordability, but with some uncertainty around oversupply conditions permeating into the Melbourne market, there is a possibility that local property prices could very well drop a gear in the near future. 

Bahrain 

Race winners at this event, held in Sakhir, Manama, are banned from spraying champagne on the podium. Drivers instead are provided with a local non-alcoholic cocktail called warrd - a blend of pomegranate, bitter orange and rosewater.

But the Bahraini locals may need a stiffer drink than Warrd to come to terms with the country’s high level of debt, after it recently emerged that Bahrain has borrowed $8.6bn on international capital markets so far this year, beating the previous high set in 2009, when the Gulf’s construction projects and property boom came unstuck after Dubai shocked investors by asking for a debt standstill.

But despite negative impacts of the sustained fall in oil prices, the real estate sector in Bahrain has proven resilient, with solid returns still considered achievable, affording hard-pressed investors the opportunity for potential growth in an otherwise unpredictable market. 

China

Drivers are generally in for a bumpy ride at the Shanghai International Circuit in China, but no way near as turbulent a journey as China’s economy has had to endure over the past 12 months or so.

China has been suffering from an economic recession since the second half of last year, and yet property has been one of the few bright spots of the slowdown. 

Shanghai’s property market has proved particularly strong, with buying sentiment growing in recent weeks, fuelled by abundant supply. 

The market registered quite active performance last month with new build housing projects costing around 30,000 yuan (£3,460) per sqm being the most popular among buyers, according to research by Centaline. 

Overall, China’s property prices and real estate investment are poised for slower growth even as home sales may rise to a record this year, according to a top government think tank.

Real estate is due for a short-term adjustment period after picking-up pace since 2015, the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences said in a report last month. 

Price increases and investment will slow in the second half of 2016 and the first half of 2017, with the divide between big cities and smaller ones continuing to widen.

Russia 

After their spat at the race in China, Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat once again earned the ire of Sebastian Vettel, by initially running into the back of him at turn two of the Russian GP at Sochi Autodrom - a street circuit built around Olympic Park in Sochi. 
Then to add insult injury, the Russian gave him another tap at the back that caused Vettel to spin into the wall at three, ending his race on the first lap.

The crash resembles the state of the Sochi housing market which has suffered from a chronic oversupply of properties, developed as part of the $50bn makeover of Sochi in the run-up to the 2014 Winter Olympics. 

According to Ilya Volodko, a director of Macon Realty, developers built five times as much space as the market can absorb, which explains why sales are stagnant. 

Spain

Much like the fast past pace of the the Circuit de Catalunya in Montmelo, northern Barcelona, the speed of property price declines across Spain in recent years has been rapid, following the 2008 financial crisis.  

Property values across Spain have plummeted. Sales levels have fallen on the back of weaker demand, much of which has been deterred by bad publicity, featuring a string property scandals, corruption, iffy legislation, not to mention a chronic oversupply of homes.

However, with plenty of property bargains available, Spain’s housing market is slowly starting to recover, amid continuous improvement in economic conditions, with property demand picking up across many parts of the country.

The latest figures from Spanish property valuation firm Tinsa reveal that the average price of a home in Spain rose by 0.8% year-on-year during the second quarter of 2016, thanks in part to a rise in the number of foreign buyers acquiring property in Spain.

But despite improving market conditions, Spanish property prices remain significantly below pre-crash levels, with the average price of a home in the country now 40.9% below the previous market high in 2007.

Monaco

The race at Monaco, the signature event of the F1 racing season, oozes the wealth and grandeur of the tiny principality, which has the highest millionaire density in the world, helping to make it the most expensive place to buy luxury property. 

 There is nothing you can buy in the  Monegasque property market for  less than £1m, and in realty you will  probably need ten times that  budget to buy a half decent  apartment in the sovereign city-  state, which has a reputation as a  playground for the rich and famous.

 Monaco’s housing market has not  really been affected by recent events in Europe, including Brexit. 

 Canada 

Lewis Hamilton powered his Mercedes AMG to the checkered flag in June, holding off Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari over the final 32 laps to claim the race at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal for a second year in a row and the  fifth time overall. The win leaves him only two short of Michael Schumacher’s victories record at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

Canada's housing market also continues to set new records, with the average sale price up to an all-time high of $508,097 (£301,200), the latest data shows. 

The Canadian Real Estate Association says that he average price of a home in Canada has increased by more than 13% over the past 12 months, led by gains in Fraser Valley, Vancouver and Victoria. 

Residential property price gains in Montreal, home to the Canadian Grand Prix which takes place on Île Notre-Dame, has been far more modest, at an average of 2.6% year-on-year. 

Europe 

The European grand prix, which was previously held in Valencia, Spain, was removed from the F1 calendar in 2013, but the race returned this year, being run on a street circuit in Baku, Azerbaijan, where the housing market has stalled over the past year. 

Prices in the country’s primary housing market have fared better than the secondary housing, with values having fallen by between 1-2% s so far this year, on the back of weaker market activity which has decreased by around 8% year-on-year. 

Austria 
 
Nico Rosberg saw his championship lead cut to just 11 points after he collided with Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton on the last lap who passed him to win a thrilling Austrian Grand Prix. Luckily, no similarly chaotic scenes have been witnessed in Austria’s property market. 

Demand for property in Austria is racing ahead, with the total number of residential property sales last year up almost 17% over the previous year, according to the Austrian National Bank. 

Home prices have increased across Austria, led by Vienna where values have risen by more than 50% since 2010. Outside Vienna, prices have increased by about 30% during that period – prices increases have been driven by a limited supply of homes. 

Britain 

It has become difficult to gauge the underlying pace of buyer demand in recent months, due to the sharp increase in house purchase activity in March ahead of the introduction of stamp duty on second homes on 1 April. But housing activity levels and prices do now look set to drop a few gears following the UK’s vote to leave the EU, but should steer clear of a market crash. 

While the vote to leave the European Union has come as a shock to many, the fundamentals of the UK housing market has not changed much.

People still need homes to live in, whether we are in the EU or not, and the fact is that demand for housing continues to heavily outstrip supply. 

Hungary

Much like many of the drivers that have tackled the Hungarian circuit in Budapest in the past, Hungary’s public debt had spiralled out of control. 

The country’s housing market has been weak for years, not helped by a slow economy, but the market has stabilised over the past 12-18 months, with prices edging higher across parts of the country. 

Budapest, where house prices and transactions have risen slightly more than the national average, is almost a single city investment consideration for UK investors at this time.

 Germany

 Nico Rosberg and Sebastian Vettel’s native  Germany could see its property market  strengthen in the coming months despite  Britain’s decision to exit the EU. 

 Residential demand is on the up, not just because the population is growing rapidly due to the recent relaxation of the country’s  immigration policies, but because the German economy remains strong despite Brexit, Yet, growing demand is not being met by the  supply of new homes coming onto the market. 

 What’s more, while the Germans are keen buyers of holiday homes abroad, domestically, the general mentality is to rent, presenting  potentially good buy-to-let opportunities. 

Belgium

In 1998, an incredible 13 cars were involved in a first-lap pile-up as the Belgian race began in torrential rain, leaving Britain’s Damon Hill to win the race. Fortunately, there are no such concerns for Belgium’s housing market 

Activity in the Belgium housing sector has picked up pace, with the volume of transactions increasing by 14% on the year in the second quarter of 2016, setting a new record. The success of real estate investments can be explained by the low interest rates on savings accounts and uncertain economic times.

The property markets in Flanders and Brussels remain particularly strong. 

Italy 

Nicknamed the Pista Magica in Italy, Monza is the quickest circuit in F1 with cars reaching a top speed of 230mph. But unfortunately the country’s housing market has failed to keep pace with most cars on the grid. 

Much like the Williams’ F1 vehicles, the Italian property market has been slow for the past few years, and could soon find itself going into reverse. The Italian financial system, to put it mildly, is in a major state of flux right now.

When you look at the country’s economic data, bank issues, and the impending constitutional referendum coming up, Italy is like an overheated engine waiting to explode.

Singapore

The Marina Bay circuit takes in the iconic Raffles Hotel where the gin-based cocktail the Singapore Sling originated. Those working in the Singaporean housing industry have probably drunk their fair share of concoctions in recent months, as they come to terms with the current plight of the city-state’s housing market. 

With a severe oversupply of luxury new-build homes lying empty and unsold, Singaporean prices have continued their downward trend this year, with Knight Frank’s latest Index ranking the market among the weakest in the world, along with Ukraine and Greece.

Malaysia

Some people claim that the Sepang venue in the capital of Kuala Lumpur, which was built on a 260-hectare swamp, may be literally sinking. The same cannot be said for the county’s property market. 

The local housing market is likely to accelerate again in the second half of the year, following increasing signs that the Malaysian housing market may have now bottomed after a major slowdown. 

Savills report that there has been a lot of pent-up demand from buyers across the market in recent weeks. 

The Malaysian government’s decision to abandon rent controls and ease foreign ownerships laws almost 10 years ago, has made the Malaysian property market far more attractive to international buyers.

Japan 

 Suzuka is the only F1 race circuit  that follows a figure-of-eight  format, where the circuit passes  over itself - it is also situated in a  theme park.

 With an oversupply of unsold  homes across parts of Japan,  particularly the capital of Tokyo, the  country’s housing sector, much like  its weak economy, has endured a rollercoaster ride in recent years. But sterling’s weak exchange rate against the Japanese yen also makes property in Japan extremely expensive for potential British buyers. 

USA 

People who attended the United States GP in Texas last year were soaked by bouts of heavy rain which brought wet conditions to the track at Austin’s Circuit of the Americas.

The US real estate market has also seen severe floods – floods of foreign buyers piling into the market to acquire a cheap home that is. 

The appetite for US real estate continues to accelerate, but international purchasers are shifting their sights from luxury to less-pricey properties, owed in part to overall higher home prices, along with a stronger US dollar, which both cost foreign buyers more at the negotiating table. 

Official figures from the National Association of Realtors show that foreign buyers purchased $102.6bn (£79.2bn) of residential property in the U.S. between April 2015 and March 2016. 

Mexico 

Mexico’s property market has been buoyed by strong demand in resort communities, with American and Canadian buyers returning to Mexico, after a several-year slump, thanks to low oil prices and the strong US dollar, driving home values up. 

American buyers are very important as owners of beachfront properties, which were badly affected by the slump of 2009-10 in areas like Baja California Sur, Nayarit, Baja California, Guerrero and Sinaloa.

Mexico also has a strong domestic market, with the greatest level of activity unsurprisingly taking place in Mexico City. 

Brazil 

The penultimate race of the season is held at the Autodromo Carlos Pace in Sao Paulo, where the housing market has slowed considerably in recent months amid political uncertainty, rising inflation and increased unemployment. 

The drop in activity, the rapid deterioration of the labour market and the deterioration in financing conditions have fuelled concerns about the health and sustainability of the property market in and around Sao Paolo where property prices have fallen this year, albeit marginally. 

Abu Dhabi 

With ambitious plans of making the emirate’s property market the best in the region, Abu Dhabi government introduced new property regulations and effectively enforced it at the beginning of 2016. 

The new law not only aims to make investing in off-plan properties much easier for all buyers, it also looks to empower investors by allowing them to terminate their off-plan purchases in certain cases. 

The Arabian capital, which controls 90% of the oil wealth in the region, is the richest and largest of all the seven UAE states, and appears to offer plenty of room for growth – far outstripping neighbouring Dubai. 


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