Annual Property Research and Analysis

This article is a part of the property research series.

Click here to view our 2015 property research and our 2016 property research.

Headline Overview – The Numbers for 2018’s Property Market

For consistency we have included the buying price per square metre in each country’s capital city as well as the expected gross rental yield, true for 2018. Where possible we’ve also included national statistics on the median house price and number of house sales in recent years too.

United States:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $17,191

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 2.91%
  • Median Home Price in 2018: $324,800
  • Median Home Price in 2017: $323,100
  • Homes Sold Over 2018: 5,250,000
  • Homes Sold Over 2017: 5,340,000

 

UK:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $29,676

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 2.4%
  • Median Home Price in 2018: £231,188
  • Median Home Price in 2017: £228,580
  • Homes Sold Over 2018: 999,147
  • Homes Sold Over 2017: 1,053,449

 

Spain:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $6,173

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 4%
  • Median Home Price in 2018: €1,493 per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2017:  €1,402 per square meter
  • Homes Sold Over 2018: 524,967
  • Homes Sold Over 2017: 473,370

 

France:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $15,867

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 2.79%
  • Average house price increase 2018 vs 2017: 3.2%
  • Homes Sold Over 2018: 970,000
  • Homes Sold Over 2017: 968,000

 

Italy:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $8,170

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 3.92%
  • Median Home Price in 2018: 1,839 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2017: 1,846 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2018: 616,000 (pro-rata estimate)
  • New Homes Sold Over 2017: 583,000 (estimate)

 

Australia:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $10,711

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 2.52%
  • Median Home Price in 2018: AU$ 570,249
  • Median Home Price in 2017: AU$ 599,001
  • Number of House Sales have fallen 6.1% YoY

 

Germany:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $7,325

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 2.95%
  • Median Home Price in 2018: 2,080 € per square meter

 

Ireland:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $17,191

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 7.09%
  • Median Home Price in 2018: €254,000
  • Median Home Price in 2017: €240,758
  • New Homes Sold Over 2018: 60,000 (estimate)
  • New Homes Sold Over 2017: 55,000 (estimate)

 

Cyprus:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $2,081

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 4.74%
  • Median Home Price has risen 1.03% YoY
  • New Homes Sold Over 2018: 8,941 (pro-rata estimate)
  • New Homes Sold Over 2017: 7,389 (estimate)

 

Portugal:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $4,749

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 5.45%
  • Median Home Price in 2018: 1,220 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2017: 1,150 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2018: 183,740 (pro rata estimate)
  • New Homes Sold Over 2017: 155,185 (estimate)

 

Netherlands:

Buying Price per Square Metre (Capital): $8,558

  • Current Rental Yield (Capital): 3.72%
  • Average house price increase 2018 vs 2017: 10.2%
  • New Homes Sold Over 2018: N/A
  • New Homes Sold Over 2017: 241,860

Countries Ranked by Rental Yield

Country/CityGross Rental Yield
Ireland, Dublin7.09%
Portugal, Lisbon5.45%
Cyprus, Limassol4.74%
Spain, Madrid4.00%
Italy, Rome3.92%
Netherlands, Amsterdam3.72%
Germany, Berlin2.95%
US, New York2.91%
France, Paris2.79%
UK, London2.71%
Australia, Sydney2.52%

Additional Information

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What to Expect in Global Real Estate 2019

global

The Australian housing market, after ten years of booming, has recently encountered quite a dramatic slowdown. For first time buyers this is welcome news as in the eyes of many Aussies, house prices were spiralling out of control, particularly in city centres such as Sydney and Melbourne.  This is primarily due to the introduction of government initiatives, such as tighter controls around lending and higher taxes for foreign buyers. Australia in particular is known for its diversity, so be sure to research each region individually ahead of making any moves. Despite the median house price falling in the major cities, house prices actually surged 15.5% in 2017 in Hobart. This divergence from state-to-state will remain prominent in 2019 and buyers looking for their best return may prove better off looking into new growth areas of Australia.

The US economy isn’t expected to continue to grow at the same rate it has in the last couple of years but, comparatively to the rest of the world, it’s enjoyed strong growth over the last decade and prices of homes have increased in line with this. Although it’s important to note that whilst prices are still increasing the rate of increase has slowed significantly in the last couple of years. Demand and construction is also expected to fall in 2019. Rental yields aren’t as appealing in the capital New York as can be found in high growth states elsewhere but ownership here is very much about the value of the underlying asset more than anything else. Investors should consider researching areas such as Orlando which is enjoying a huge growth in population and its labour market.

Much like our previous summary in 2016 where political risk was at an all time high in the eurozone, the lack of development with Brexit, means the same still applies now. Whilst Europe feels like it’s currently on hold at the moment things may look very different after the 31st October 2019. EU leaders are reluctant to grant the UK another extension unless there is a significant development from the UK which would justify granting one and the prospect of a no deal outcome is becoming more and more likely. The ramifications for many of the countries we’ve listed here could be huge.

Where to Invest in 2019

Hangman's noose with money on brown wooden background

Just as our research indicated in the past, Ireland tops the rankings for rental yields by quite a significant margin. Moreover the number of house transactions completed has risen significantly from a slump they endured a few years ago. Looking at purely the numbers Ireland looks by far the best bet for investors.

However, given the political and economic risk facing Ireland in the coming years, it will very much depend on your risk appetite and interpretation of what may unfold with Brexiit. A potentially much safer option to consider is Portugal. After three years of depression, the recovery in house prices began in 2014 and ever since house prices have been booming. With the number of house transactions and house prices increasing the Portuegese market is expected to remain active in 2019 and also into 2020. Investors who entered Portugal in the last few years have seen huge returns and it just remains to be seen if this will continue for a significant period into the future.

 

Where Not to Invest in 2019

Italian house prices fell 0.4% YoY. Not as significant a fall as the -1.2 percent recorded in the previous year, but nonetheless still a decline. And important to note this goes against the trend happening elsewhere in Europe, where house prices are up 4.3% on average. To put into comparison, the top performing countries such as the Netherlands and Ireland saw a 10.2% and 9.1% increase respectively. Italian house prices have been falling for the last 10 years and whilst not looking as one of the best options for investment, could prove ideal for those seeking a cheaper holiday home.

 

relax and take notesThings to Watch For in 2019

Brexit is expected to impact Ireland more than any other EU member. According to a government commissioned report the UK currently takes around 15 percent of Irish exports and Brexit could have between a 2.8-7% negative impact on Irish GDP depending on the terms agreed (if any at all) for the UK’s exit from the EU.

Similarly, trade with the UK, accounted for 3.1% of GDP in the dutch economy in 2017. Other than Ireland, the Netherlands and Germany currently trade with the UK more than any other nation and as a result will feel the impact most.

Even those countries where trade is not quite as significant with Britain will be impacted too. For example, the biggest overseas purchaser of spanish property is still UK residents at 10% of international sales. Many Brits have pressed on with Spanish property purchases in earnest so they can complete transactions before Brexit and legislation potentially changing dramatically. Once Britain has left the EU, and again with no deal becoming more likely, the number of buyers from Britain is almost certainly going to reduce.

 

Currency Factors to Consider

As much as we look into property yields of 2-5% per annum and home price increases of around 2% it’s absolutely vital to understand the value of these can easily be wiped out by currency market movements.

For example, if we consider an EU based buyer looking to purchase a property in the US during 2018, they could at one point throughout the year achieved a rate of 1.25 EUR/USD but contrastingly could have also achieved a rate of 1.12, depending on the date they agreed to the international currency transaction. A rate difference of over 11.5%. Without a carefully managed currency strategy the hard earned gains could mean nothing at all. And conversely if the market moves in your favour incomes could be much more significant than expected. International investors should consider a currency broker that can guide them through the process such as Currencies Direct so they can look to achieve the best possible rates through various tools such as forward contracts which can be used to fix the agreed currency rate for a point in the future on large property purchases or even for fixing regular smaller amounts such as rental income.

The current strength of the US dollar is expected to continue in the coming years, meaning purchase of USD from virtually any other currency in the world is more expensive than it was a year or two ago. Similarly the comparative weakness of GBP at the moment could make the UK a more attractive investment for overseas buyers and whilst the London housing market has generally slowed recently the number of international buyers is increasing as they make the most of the weak pound.

 

Recommended Reading and Sources:


Past Years Property Statistics

2016 Property Research and Analysis

United States:

  • Median Home Price in 2016: $234,400
  • Median Home Price in 2015: $220,300
  • New Homes Sold Over 2016: 6,723,000
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 5,888,000
  • Rental Yield 2016: 4.4%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 6%

UK:

  • Median Home Price in 2016: £198,564
  • Median Home Price in 2015: £195,000
  • New Homes Sold Over 2016: ?
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 1,223,520
  • Rental Yield 2016: 4.4%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 3.6%

Spain:

  • Median Home Price in 2016: 4,409 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2015: 1,638 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2016: 457,689
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 314,442
  • Rental Yield 2016: 5%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 3.98%

France:

  • Median Home Price in 2016: 8,199 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2015: 3,639 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2016: 852,480 (estimate)
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 740,000
  • Rental Yield 2016: 4.2%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 2.89%

Italy:

  • Median Home Price in 2016: 6,800 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2015: 5,930 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2016: 445,000
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 207,000
  • Rental Yield 2016: 4.02%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 3.86%

Australia:

  • Median Home Price in 2016: A$ 623,000
  • Median Home Price in 2015: A$ 436,100
  • New Homes Sold Over 2016: 422,765
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 220,000
  • Rental Yield 2016: 5%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 4.39%

Germany:

  • Median Home Price in 2016: 4,821 € per square meter (Munich example)
  • Median Home Price in 2015: 4,078 € per square meter (Munich example)
  • New Homes Sold Over 2016: 300,000
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 230,000
  • Rental Yield 2016: 2.9% (Munich example)
  • Rental Yield 2015: 3.7%

Ireland:

  • Median Home Price in 2016: €261,206
  • Median Home Price in 2015: €247,823
  • New Homes Sold Over 2016: 24,000 (properties sold in Ireland hit a 9-year low in 2016)
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 42,451
  • Rental Yield 2016: 8.7%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 7.5%

Cyprus:

  • Median Home Price in 2016: 1,800 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2015: 1,790 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2016: 5,500 (approximate)
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 5,952
  • Rental Yield 2016: 4%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 4.23%

 

2015 Property Research and Analysis

 

United States:

  • Median Home Price in 2015: $220,300
  • Median Home Price in 2014: $208,200
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 5,880,000 based on the statistic of 490,000 per month.
  • New Homes Sold Over 2014: 5,388,000 based on the statistic of 449,000 per month
  • Total Investment in Property 2015: $1,047,200,000,000
  • Total Investment in Property 2014: $1,026,172,000,000
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2015 (out of total investment): 26%
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2014 (out of total investment): 24.7%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 6%
  • Rental Yield 2014: 5.4%

 

UK:

  • Median Home Price in 2015: £195,000
  • Median Home Price in 2014: £272,000
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 1,223,520
  • New Homes Sold Over 2014: 1,220,000
  • Total Investment in Property 2015: £238,586,400,000
  • Total Investment in Property 2014: £331,840,000,000
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2015 (out of total investment): 23.07%
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2014 (out of total investment): 22%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 3.6%
  • Rental Yield 2014: 3.4%

 

Spain:

  • Median Home Price in 2015: 1,638 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2014: 1,594 €
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 314,442
  • New Homes Sold Over 2014: 310,100
  • Total Investment in Property 2015: 51,505,599,600
  • Total Investment in Property 2014: 50,784,521,205
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2015 (out of total investment): 12.96%
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2014 (out of total investment): 13.01%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 3.98%
  • Rental Yield 2014: 4.2%

 

France:

  • Median Home Price in 2015: 3,639 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2014: 2,742 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 740,000
  • New Homes Sold Over 2014: 729,640
  • Total Investment in Property 2015: 269,286,000,000 €
  • Total Investment in Property 2014: 200,067,288,000 €
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2015 (out of total investment): 29%
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2014 (out of total investment): 30.87%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 2.89%
  • Rental Yield 2014: 2.99%

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Italy:

  • Median Home Price in 2015: 5,930 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2014: 5,722 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 207,000
  • New Homes Sold Over 2014: 199,548
  • Total Investment in Property 2015: 1,227,510,000 €
  • Total Investment in Property 2014: 1,141,813,656 €
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2015 (out of total investment): 22,37%
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2014 (out of total investment): 18.77%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 3.86%
  • Rental Yield 2014: 3.54%

 

Australia:

  • Median Home Price in 2015: A$ 7,250 per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2014: A$ 6,691 per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 220,000
  • New Homes Sold Over 2014: 203,060
  • Total Investment in Property 2015: A$ 159,500,000,000
  • Total Investment in Property 2014: A$ 135,867,446,000
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2015 (out of total investment): 5.3%
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2014 (out of total investment): 9.6%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 4.39%
  • Rental Yield 2014: 4.79%

 

Germany:

  • Median Home Price in 2015: 4,078 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2014: 3,861 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 230,000
  • New Homes Sold Over 2014: 197,800
  • Total Investment in Property 2015: 93,794,000,000 €
  • Total Investment in Property 2014: 76,370,580,000 €
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2015 (out of total investment): 25.74%
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2014 (out of total investment): 22.03%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 3.7%
  • Rental Yield 2014: 3.52%

 

Ireland:

  • Median Home Price in 2015: 4,156 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2014: 4,010 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 42,451
  • New Homes Sold Over 2014: 40,200
  • Total Investment in Property 2015: 17,642,635,600 €
  • Total Investment in Property 2014: 16,120,200,000 €
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2015 (out of total investment): 17%
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2014 (out of total investment): 15.8%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 7.5%
  • Rental Yield 2014: 7.24%

Cyprus:

  • Median Home Price in 2015: 1,790 € per square meter
  • Median Home Price in 2014: 1,687 € per square meter
  • New Homes Sold Over 2015: 5,952
  • New Homes Sold Over 2014: 4,884
  • Total Investment in Property 2015: 1,065,408
  • Total Investment in Property 2014: 823,930,800
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2015 (out of total investment): 2.4%
  • % of Foreign Investment of Property 2014 (out of total investment): 1.9%
  • Rental Yield 2015: 4.23%
  • Rental Yield 2014: 5.27%

Concluding words about property around the globe

Investing into foreign property is what many of our readers on Money Transfer Comparison do. If you reside in a country with low yield on rental property, you may want to find an opportunity that pays much more. If you see an opportunity in terms of prices in comparison to your domestic property market, you may want to tap into it. What’s important to remember is when investing abroad, in a currency different than they one you have, currency exchange rates play a big role in your decision. When exchange rates are favorable, you will lean to towards spending abroad, and when they aren’t you will look closely at your local market. Look at the British market post-brexit fore instance where overseas investment has halted, while investments from abroad in the UK grew (in spite of somewhat gloomy outlook for the economy). It all boils down to the exchange rate!

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