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Dramatic fall in property prices in first quarter

Annualised house prices in Cyprus fell by 7.8 per cent during the first quarter of 2014, while flat prices suffered even bigger losses by 10.7 per cent, according to the property price index of the Cyprus branch of the global body of chartered surveyors (RICS).

The index shows an even more dramatic annual drop in shops – 14.8 per cent – and offices, with 10.4 per cent, while warehouse prices fell by 11.4 per cent.

On a quarterly basis, house and flat prices fell by 1.4 and 2.6 per cent respectively, with the Famagusta district showing the highest decrease – 4.0 per cent on houses and 9.3 on flats.

Shop prices fell by an average of 1.7 per cent Cyprus-wide, offices by 1.4 per cent and warehouses by 0.9 per cent.

Cyprus-wide, rents recorded a quarterly drop of 1.4 per cent for flats, 1.6 per cent for houses, 1.3 per cent for shops, 3.1 per cent for warehouses, and 1.2 per cent for offices.

Compared to the first quarter of 2013, rents fell by 11.3 per cent for flats, 12.6 per cent for houses, 23.3 per cent for shops, 15.3 per cent for offices and 14.0 per cent for warehouses.

On behalf of Cyprus Surveyors’ Association, Charalambos Petrides said that the property market appears to have hit rock bottom in 2013, and as a result 2014 should see a rise in property sales.

With regard to property prices in 2014, the falling trend is expected to continue at least over the first half, with the exception of specialised types of property, including income property in central areas or landmark projects, mostly on the beachfront.

“Limited liquidity available in the market, coupled with high interest rates, appear to impede the stabilisation of the property market,” he concluded.

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