Optimism in Global Property Markets Returning

There seems to be a lot more optimism about the state of the global property market, with many commentators predicting that price growth in a number of international markets will be the primary characteristic as we plough through 2010 and beyond....

There seems to be a lot more optimism about the state of the global property market, with many commentators predicting that price growth in a number of international markets will be the primary characteristic as we plough through 2010 and beyond.

A number of mid-term real estate reports have been mirroring this view and are supportive of the belief that recovery is well under way and with properties in the New York and London markets keeping up with continuous price rises seen in the east - most notably Hong Kong and Singapore - in the past several months, many destinations are winning back the confidence of wary property investors.

Furthermore, in the traditionally safe London market, low interest rates and a relatively weak pound against a number of currencies (other than the beleaguered euro) is making it an attractive proposition to foreign buyers.

Certainly the London market has been enjoying a great deal of interest from overseas with upmarket apartment developer Berkley Group telling Reuters that foreign buyers currently made up 30 per cent of all investors - more than double the historic level of 12 per cent.

The firm's managing director, Rob Perrins, explained that the combination of new luxury developments, attractive pricing and a weak sterling were contributing to the market's popularity.

"Our location helps a lot, London has got the Olympics coming, it's got the business sector, everyone thought businesses would relocate, but the coalition is a lot more business-friendly, that's a very good start for us," he told Reuters.

While Knight Frank has claimed that the number of wealthy foreigners investing in property worth more than GBP 5 million in the UK capital now stands at 70 per cent.

In fact, this wave of optimism which is sweeping the market in the UK is reflective of the greater momentum worldwide. Nubricks reported that the latest property management figures show that there has been a massive 60 per cent growth in interest in international real estate compared to the same period last year.

Leading the pack in terms of attracting interest are Cyprus, Portugal, Spain, France and the south eastern coast of Florida.

And similarly to the London market, many of the eurozone destinations mentioned seem very good value to buyers looking to capitalise on the weak value of euro and of sterling.

Jonathan Cornell, of mortgage brokers First Action Finance, explained to the Telegraph that "despite austerity packages announced by most of the western governments, there are some incredible wealthy individuals with cash burning holes in their pockets".

Property has always been viewed as an attractive investment vehicle and with many markets beginning the long road to recovery, now could be the ideal time to cash in on what could be viewed as bargain European property.

A key indicator of the new confidence and growth can be seen by the re-emergence of a number of major developers to the market after a period of relative quiet after the global recession, with many announcing that they have new projects waiting to begin.

Cyprus, London and the UAE are among some of the markets where major new projects are about to get underway, while a recent report from Jones Lang LaSalle suggested that the market in Dubai was going to finish the year strongly after its crash last year.

However, with the total residential stock in Dubai expected to hit 320,000 by the end of 2011, full recovery is not expected until 2011 at the earliest.

"Unlike the office sector, no major delays or cancellations are foreseen in the residential market over the remainder of 2010," the report said. "Finance is a key factor in market recovery. The residential market has shown signs of improved lending in 2010 as more banks are injecting liquidity into the mortgage market."

Added to this, the apparent willingness on the part of many investors to look further afield for the best property investments and the start of a worldwide price recovery in the majority of international markets, the future is looking bright for many buyers.

With a number of major international cities experiencing an increase in both prices and the level of enquiries twinned with the new optimism for the international market, it certainly points to growth in 2010 in the global market place.ADNFCR-3415-ID-19871807-ADNFCR

- Wednesday 07 July 2010

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