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Showing posts with label real estate prices. Show all posts
Showing posts with label real estate prices. Show all posts

July 17, 2011

More Real Estate Bubble Talk

Hi Folks,

   Hope you had a nice weekend, and I'm honored to have you back with me!

   Last week, we took a look at Canada and where it stands in terms of a Housing Bubble (Canadian Housing Bubble Or An Exception To The Rule) vs. our busted bubble. Today, let's expand our reach and look at a few countries around the globe to examine whether their Housing Bubble has burst yet.

   Any conversation about Real Estate and Housing would not be complete without discussing China. In a recent Investopedia story that was aptly named, "China's Real Estate Bubble", Arthur Pinkasovitch looked at the average home prices in 2007, which, "slipped from $221,900 to $219,000" and then had a "massive 21% drop over the next two years." In contract, the author said that Chinese real estate "maintained its value through the Great Recession as property values tripled between 2004 and 2009." However, he says that "major cracks are beginning to surface within the Chinese real estate market as speculation about the collapse of the bubble has started to emerge.", and points to a drop from "stable" to "negative" by Standard & Poor's ("in anticipation of a "sharp correction" for real estate prices. Analysts are forecasting that home prices will fall by 10% within the next year.")

   Pinkasovitch points to oversupply of residential and commercial real estate in the country, and says that in order to maintain GDP growth, "the Chinese government has continued to over invest in large infrastructure projects focused on real estate development. At an average wage of $7,400 people are neither able to purchase the basic $100,000 apartments units nor invest into small businesses around the new developments.", and names some cities with residential apartment occupancy rates of only 30%. On the Commercial Real Estate end, he discusses the "Great Mall of China" which, "contains 9.6 million square feet of floor space", but, "less than a dozen active shops remain in the mall".

   Additionally, the Author points to the following fact; "According to The Atlantic, residential housing investments contributes to 6% of GDP, the same level as U.S. real estate at the peak of the housing bubble". He also says that the current prices are too high, and that "property prices in major metropolitan areas have risen to unsustainable levels".

   Robert Rubin, Editor of Safe Money Products, corroborates this, and says that China is already full of "empty cities, malls, and airports. That’s why China may not be the place for long-term safe money, despite its boom.". Rubin says that Local governments around China formed “Local Government Funding Vehicles” (to lend money to developers), but says that the finances of these "unofficial banks" are off-record, and says that the government of China "recently estimated 26% of these loans are bad, and 50% will be repaid only with difficulty.". Rubin also says that the real estate bubble "may pop when its government raises interest rates to control inflation."

   Putting the China "Bubble" on hold for a moment, let's take a look at a few other countries.

   In the Middle East, and specifically in Saudi Arabia, "A leading Saudi architect has warned that the Kingdom’s ambitious housing programmes could be scuppered by a looming real-estate bubble", says an article in Construction Week, titled, "Kingdom faces real-estate bubble, says Saudi Diyar". "The real-estate sector is ridiculously overpriced; it is a bubble", says Saudi Diyar principal Hisham Malaika on an Arab News interview. Additionally, says the Diyar from the oil rich nation that seems to build endlessly, "The cost of real estate is over inflated, and it is prohibitive for real-estate developers to finance projects for low- and medium-income families".

   In Europe, the Bulgarian Real Estate Market will return to an uptrend imminently, says an article titled, "Limited Return' of Bulgarian Real Estate Market 'On the Way'" and the "Bulgaria Real Estate Report Q3 2011" of Business Monitor International (BMI). The report cites data that an "average of 1 550 property auctions took place a month in January and February 2011, compared with a monthly average of 750 in 2010."

   The story sums up the Bulgarian market and says that the market "has a long way to go to recover before BMI sees anything like the growth of the previous decade", and that "a fundamental improvement in Bulgaria's economy has yet to be seen that would prompt BMI to upgrade the report forecasts and therefore the 2011 real GDP growth expectation is left virtually unchanged".

   Although the countries discussed here appear to be at differing stages of Bubbles and recoveries, we live in a Global Economy, which is not a cliché. As Rubin points out regarding the Chinese market; "The great threat isn’t to China, but to the commodity producers around the world that feed Chinese construction. China is the largest commodity consumer in the world. If Chinese construction wanes, demand for commodities will plunge. Commodities, stocks of commodity producers, and currencies of commodity producing nations will all be hit hard." The ripple effects of each country ultimately effects all of us, either directly or indirectly.

   What are your thoughts on this story?

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Have a Great Week, and Happy Rent-to-Owning !
Rob Eisenstein
HomeRun Homes Blog: http://blogging.lease2buy.com
HomeRun Homes Websites: http://www.lease2buy.com and http://www.homerunhomes.com

TAGS: #Canada #ChinaRealEstate #HousingBubble #realestateprices #commercialrealestate #MiddleEast #SaudiArabia #Europe #Bulgaria #GDP