Increase in expat influx pushes up Swiss property prices

Published:  25 Apr at 6 PM
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Switzerland’s continuing popularity as an immigration destination is causing a further increase in the country’s already high property rental prices.

Real estate agents in the country are reporting further increases over and above the 2.3 per cent 2012 increase in rental charges for apartments. Rents are already another 2 per cent higher than at the end of last year, and are expected to continue to rise.

Demand for rental properties and the resultant rent rises are attributed to increased immigration from other EU countries as well as to the country’s stable economy and attractive tax regime. The present construction boom is expected to slow the increase in rents, as is the recently announced government initiative aimed at severely restricting immigration over the next year.

Demand is at present outstripping supply in the upscale Lake Geneva and Zurich regions, with rental increases of 2.5 per cent in 0213 forecast by a number of realtors. Since 2005, average rents have risen by 25 per cent, fuelling a move to home ownership and an increase in the average selling price of condominium units.

The move to home ownership seems unaffected by policies introduces last year aimed at dampening down the booming mortgage market, with single family homes across the country seeing rises in price up to and including the first quarter of 2013. Interest from large-scale buy-to-let investors, impressed by Switzerland’s stability, may push up prices still further.
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