House prices in the Eurozone hit seven-year low
Now is a great time for an expat to buy some property in the Eurozone. House prices have fallen to seven year low meaning that there are some great bargains for prospective expat house hunters.
The steepest declines have occurred in some of the most popular destinations for expats, including Greece, Spain, Portugal and France. Most of those have been worst hit by the financial crisis still plaguing the continent, but where there is a crisis there is also opportunity.
Spain has seen prices plunge by as much as 75% over the past few years. The country is still reeling from the popping of the property bubble in the early 21st century. Prices in some areas have plummeted below to lows not seen since 2003.
Confirming the decline was last week’s release of the European Central Banks Eurozone wide residential property prices index which measures the price levels for existing and new properties in the region. At the end of the first quarter of 2013 it hit its lowest level since mid-2006, before the global financial crisis hit.
The Republic of Ireland has seen house prices fall to their lowest levels since the turn of the millennium. Greece has seen large declines.
Not all European countries have seen declines however. Houses in Austria and Germany have increased in value. Both nations have low levels of unemployment and historically low levels of home ownership as citizens prefer to rent rather than buy. Austrian property’s are at that their highest ever value.