By Stelios Orphanides
Home prices rose for the sixth consecutive quarter in April to June after reaching their lowest point in the fourth quarter of 2015 accompanied by a recovery of commercial real estate prices pushing rents upwards, the Cyprus branch of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) said.
Flat and house prices rose in the second quarter a quarterly 1.5 per cent and 1.6 per cent respectively, “with the biggest increase being in Limassol with quarterly increase of 3.8 per cent for flats and houses,” RICS said in an emailed statement on Wednesday. The increase was even higher for holiday apartments and holiday flats whose prices rose 2.6 per cent and 1.9 per cent.
“Limassol showed the highest quarterly increases for holiday apartments with an increase of 4.2 per cent and Paphos for holiday homes with an increase of 3 per cent,” the statement said.
Compared with the second quarter of 2016, apartment and house prices rose island-wide in April to June 6.2 per cent and 4.7 per cent respectively, the institute said.
Commercial property prices rose in all categories both on an annual and quarterly basis in the second three-month period of the year, the institute said. Shop prices rose a quarterly 2 per cent in the second quarter while those for offices and warehouses rose 1.6 per cent and 0.2 per cent in the second quarter. Compared with the second quarter of 2016, office prices increased 3.7 per cent followed by a 4.5 per cent increase in prices for shops and 2.8 per cent for warehouses.
The general increase in property prices, boosted by a variety of factors including a recovering economy, tax breaks and demand for golden visas and passports, led to a strong increase in rents, RICS said.
In the second quarter “across Cyprus, on a quarterly basis rental values increased by 3 per cent for apartments, 1 per cent for houses, 2 per cent for retail, 3.7 per cent for offices and 0.7 per cent for warehouses,” the institute said.
Compared to April to June last year, rents increased 8.3 per cent for flats, 10.2 per cent for houses, 6.8 per cent for retail, 14.4 per cent for offices and for warehouses 4.2 per cent, it added.
The RICS report said that in the second quarter of the year, gross yields for flats and houses stood at 4.1 per cent and 2.1 per cent respectively, while in the case of retail, the yield for warehouses and offices stood at 5.4 per cent, 4.3 per cent and 4.9 per cent respectively.