By Stelios Orphanides
Residential and most commercial property prices rose in the second quarter of 2016 driven by an increase in rents in most property categories, as economic growth is consolidating, the Cypriot division of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors said.
House prices increased in April to June a quarterly 0.3 per cent and an annual 1.1 per cent while apartment prices rose 0.2 per cent and 0.5 per cent respectively, RICS said in an emailed statement on Wednesday.
The increase in apartments in the second quarter of the year, in which banks started to apply the new foreclosure law, was spearheaded by Larnaca where flat prices rose 1.1 per cent compared to the previous quarter, and 4.3 per cent compared to the respective quarter of 2015, RICS said. By contrast, flat prices in Nicosia fell a quarterly 0.2 per cent and an annual 2.3 per cent.
In Limassol, Paphos, and Famagusta, apartment prices remained unchanged in the second quarter, compared to January to March, RICS said. Compared to the second quarter of 2015, in Limassol and Paphos, they fell 0.6 per cent and 0.7 per cent respectively, and rose 1.5 per cent in Famagusta.
The main boost in house prices came in the second quarter from Paphos, where they rose 1.1 per cent in a quarter in April to June, and 8 per cent compared to a year before, RICS said.
In Nicosia and Limassol, house prices remained unchanged in the second quarter and dropped 1.3 per cent and 2.8 per cent respectively, compared to the second quarter of 2015.
In Larnaca house prices remained unchanged compared to the first quarter and rose 1.4 per cent compared to the second quarter of 2015. In Famagusta they remained unchanged in both cases.
Holiday homes, a new category measured for the first time this year, applying exclusively to seaside residential properties, rose in April to June a quarterly 2.7 per cent and 1.1 per cent in the case of flats and houses respectively, RICS said.
The prices of retail properties rose in the second quarter 0.3 per cent compared to January to March and dropped 0.8 per cent compared to April to June 2015, RICS said. Prices for warehouses remained unchanged both compared to the quarter before and the second three-month period of 2015 while office prices rose a quarterly 0.6 per cent and an annual 2.8 per cent.
In the second quarter of the year, shop prices rose the most in Paphos, 1.5 per cent in a quarter and 5 per cent in a year, RICS said. In the case of warehouses, the highest annual increase was Paphos’s 10 per cent, while the office price increase was reported from Limassol where they rose 2.6 per cent and 8.3 per cent compared to the previous quarter and the respective three-month period of 2015.
In the second quarter, apartment and house rents rose 0.4 per cent and 0.5 per cent respectively compared to the quarter before, RICS said. Retail property and office rents rose a quarterly 0.3 per cent and 0.6 per cent while warehouse rents dropped 0.4 per cent.
Compared to the second quarter of 2015, both apartment and house rents rose 4.9 per cent in April to June while shop and office rents rose 0.5 per cent and 5.2 per cent, RICS said. Warehouse rents dropped an annual 1.2 per cent.