Tag Archives: sales

Economy slowing and lower oil prices affecting Abu Dhabi’s rental markets

Average housing rents in Abu Dhabi have fallen for the first time in three years, driven by thousands of job cuts and an increase in the cost of living. The first signs of long expected falls in housing rents in Abu Dhabi started to appear in the second quarter, according to new reports from property brokers JLL and CBRE. Residential property rents in Abu Dhabi have fallen for the first time in three years at a time when jobs are being cut and the cost of living is increasing. The average rental price of a prime two bedroom apartment fell by 2% in the second quarter of 2016 compared with the first quarter, according to the latest report from real estate services firm JLL. The latest report from property firm CBRE also shows that there was a 2% fall in apartment rents in the second quarter of the year while it adds that villa rents fell by an average of 1%. ‘While supply remains stable, the reduction in demand has now started to cause vacancy rates to nudge upwards, indicating we have now reached a tipping point with rents declining for the first time in three years,’ said David Dudley, head of JLL’s Abu Dhabi office. The firm believes that plans by the state owned oil company Adnoc to cut 5,000 jobs by the end of the year, and staff cuts at other government companies, means fewer people are attracted to the emirate and apartments are left empty. JLL is forecasting that rents will fall further this year as more expats and their families are expected to leave as their tenancies expire at the end of the academic year. ‘We expect the impact of these job cuts and reduced incomes to become more pronounced over the summer, as some people look to either leave or downsize. This will push vacancy rates up further and cause rents to decline,’ explained Dudley. The CBRE report also points to a drop in incomes as being behind demand falling for rental apartments with tenants looking for cheaper lets due to a combination of falling wages, a reduction in allowances and benefits, the removal of fuel and water subsidies and a new 3% municipality fee on Abu Dhabi expat rentals. ‘With economic challenges expected to continue in the short term, we anticipate further deflation of high end luxury rates as reduced corporate demand creates a more tenant led market,’ said Matthew Green, head of research in CBRE’s office. He believes that with just 14,500 new homes expected to come to the market over the next two and a half years, around 5% of the current housing stock most of which will be aimed at the upper end of the market, rents for more afford¬able homes are likely to remain fairly flat. ‘With limited stock against current requirements, rental rates for affordable units have remained steady with minimal fluctuation recorded against the general slowdown observed in the upper segments,’ he added. But… Continue reading

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Over 82,500 sales recorded in England and Wales in June

More than 82,500 residential and commercial land and property sales in England and Wales were lodged for registration in June 2016, according to the latest data to be published. Of the 82,530 sales lodged for registration 60,249 were freehold and 9,000 were newly built, the figures from the Land Registry show. Some 442 were residential sales in June 2016 in England and Wales were for £1 million and over and 283 were residential sales in June 2016 in London for £1 million and over, the data also shows. A breakdown of the figures shows that of the total sales 18,910 were detached properties, 20,987 were semi-detached, 23,485 were terraces, and 17,599 were flats or maisonettes. The most expensive residential sale in June 2016 was of a terraced property in the City of Westminster in London which was sold for £16.9 million while the cheapest residential sale was a terraced property in Bishop Auckland, County Durham, which sold for £12,500. The most expensive commercial sale in June 2016 was also in the City of Westminster, London for £65 million and the cheapest commercial sale in June 2016 was in Bassetlaw, Nottinghamshire for £1,000. Continue reading

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First time buyers in UK not impacted by Brexit vote

Buyers in the UK seemed largely unperturbed in the run up to the European Union referendum in June with sales to first time buyers increasing. According to the latest monthly report from the National Association of Estate Agents (NAEA) demand for housing increased as well while supply of available properties and the number of sales going through were stable. However, immediately following the result to leave the EU, agents witnessed uncertainty from sellers, and supply fell momentarily. Overall in June, estate agents saw an increase in demand which the NAEA says suggests that buyers weren’t fazed by the risk of Brexit in the lead up to the vote. There were an average 330 house hunters registered per member branch last month, up 9% from May when 304 buyers were registered, the lowest number recorded since November 2013. However, although June saw growth in the number of prospective buyers, demand still remains low in comparison to June last year. Meanwhile, some 57% of agents reported a drop in demand from prospective buyers and 58% saw supply fall in the week immediately following the vote. However, it is expected this will level out in July. First time buyers in particular were not impacted by the Brexit result. Immediately following the result only 28% of NAEA agents witnessed uncertainty from this group of buyers, while 30% of total house sales in June were made to first time buyers, the highest number of sales since October last year. The Brexit vote did not affect the number sales that completed in June either, with a total of eight sales completing per branch last month, a figure which has not shifted from May. Further to this, the supply of available housing also remained the same with an average of 37 properties registered per member branch in June. ‘In periods of extreme political and economic uncertainty, the housing market will always respond. However, it’s a relief to see that looking at the whole month overall, buyers were still keen to buy, sellers were still keen to sell and sales were still going through at the same level as we’d expect,’ said Mark Hayward, NAEA managing director. ‘It’s only natural that immediately following the vote supply fell but our figures show that the lead up to the vote wasn’t all doom and gloom, which should be a good indication of the months to come,’ he explained. ‘We remain upbeat and need others in the industry to do so as well. The new Housing Minister confirming his commitment to building £1 million new homes will be encouraging for many buyers, especially those looking to buy their first home. Hopefully we should soon see housing market confidence bouncing back to the levels seen pre-Brexit,’ he added. Continue reading

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