Are we facing a dip in property buyers?

The property industry has long represented a substantial chunk of the Maltese economy. Recent research conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers found that only forty-five percent of those questioned have the intention of buying property. This compares discouragingly with the data in January which amounted to fifty-eight percent.

source – https://www.pwc.com/

With respect to those seeking a rental property, a five percent drop was registered from January to June. Back in January, twenty-six percent of respondents indicated that they had no plans to either buy or rent property. This figure increased significantly in June to forty-four percent. Such research is necessary as it sheds light on consumer sentiment during a particularly unique period in time. The survey consisted of four hundred and sixty-one people that were aged over eighteen.

Although there are fewer respondents expressing their intention to purchase property, the latest data collated indicates an increase over the average budget. The largest share of those intending to acquire property are willing to do so at an investment of between a hundred fifty-one thousand and a hundred and seventy thousand Euro. Back in January, the biggest chunk at just over twenty percent was interested in property valued between a hundred and a hundred and fifty thousand Euro. This category represents the cheapest values and has now gone down to below fifteen percent. Over forty percent of participants are interested to buy property ranging from a hundred and fifty-one thousand to two hundred and fifty thousand Euro.

Amongst those surveyed, there were participants who have a budget of over three hundred thousand Euro. In June such respondents equaled to a third, whilst in January, these were at twenty percent. Most of the respondents are people seeking to move out of their parental homes.

Most respondents did not express their intention to buy property as an investment. Those seeking to do so were at ten percent in June, which compares negatively to the twenty-three percent in January. Over half of respondents are seeking apartments and penthouses, however there was a significant increase in those looking for townhouses. A difference of nine percent from January to June. With respect to acquisition of rental property, the demand for Gozo increased rapidly, from ten to eighteen percent.

A dip in demand of property acquisition can have serious repercussions on the Maltese economy. Being one of the consistent drivers, numerous properties are being developed and if the demand were to decrease significantly, we would end up with several businesses having empty properties, with no profits from their projects.

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