© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Apartments are pictured in the Mitte district of Berlin, Germany, August 29, 2019. REUTERS/Axel Schmidt
By Jonathan Cable
LONDON (Reuters) – German house prices will fall by 3.5% next year as the cost of living and rising rents hit buyers, but the likelihood of a real crash is low, according to a Reuters poll of property market experts.
Consumer price inflation in Europe’s biggest economy was 11.6% last month and the European Central Bank has been raising interest rates as the bloc looks to collapse, causing financial problems at home.
Average house prices in Germany will fall 3.5% in 2023 Nov. election. 8-18 of the 12 market watchers predicted, a sharp turn from the 0.5% increase predicted in the August election. In 2024 it will decrease by 0.5% and then increase by 1.0% in 2025.
But when asked about the likelihood of a market crash in the coming year, 11 respondents said it was low and one said it was very low. Only one said it was superior.
“The weak demand for mortgages and the decrease in the purchasing power of consumers indicate that the change in the housing market has already begun – however, we expect a larger price correction than a real deterioration in housing prices,” said Carsten Brzeski at ING.
However, the median response when asked how much prices would fall from peak to peak was 10.0%, with the lowest rate given as 17.5%.
“In the first quarter of 2022, we also saw a significant increase compared to the previous year – compared to these values, 10% less is true,” said Jörg Utecht at Interhyp.
However, this fall may not be enough to keep housing prices affordable, the study found, with experts saying a 20% peak-to-peak drop would be needed after prices rose nearly 10% last year and are expected to rise 3.0% this year.
On a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is cheap and 10 is expensive, respondents gave an average answer of 7 – putting home buying for most first-time buyers or those looking to upgrade.
(For more news from Reuters quarterly housing market polls 🙂