After a dynamic start, the real estate market experienced a slowdown and price stagnation in most cities in Serbia in the second half of 2023. However, future buyers are still eager to know what will happen to real estate prices in 2024.
A survey conducted by the specialized real estate website, 4zida, which included both owners and employees of 85 real estate agencies and 19 real estate developers, showed that as many as 59% of agencies predict price stagnation, while 37% believe that prices will fall. Developers are almost unanimous on this issue with 94% of them saying that apartment prices will stagnate.
Only 6 percent of them believe that prices will fall.
However, both of them believe that economic instability in the country and the world represents the biggest challenge in business, followed by unfavourable housing loans and high inflation, while developers are also worried about the lack of labour. The overall projection of the real estate market is positive. This is supported by the fact that the majority of surveyed agencies and developers believe that their revenues will remain at the 2023 level or will increase.
After the pandemic and the conflict in Ukraine, which in the previous three years had a significant impact on real estate prices, the ongoing conflict in the Middle East represents a new challenge in this sector as well. More than half of the agencies (51%) answered that they did not know whether the Middle East conflict would affect the real estate market in Serbia in 2024, while 74 percent of developers also cannot predict this.
Regarding apartment rental prices in Belgrade and other major cities in Serbia, for the next year, most agencies (64%) believe that rent prices will stagnate, 26% that they will decline, while 10% think that prices will rise.
Most of the surveyed agencies identified three main factors that affected their business – unfavourable housing loans (62%), reduced demand for real estate (51%) and uncertain geopolitical situation and, therefore, greater caution of clients when planning buying and selling real estate (39%) ). Other factors cited are the fact that clients are waiting for prices to drop and are postponing purchases.
Developers also believe that unfavourable lending conditions had the greatest impact on their business (74%). This is followed by an increase in the price of construction materials (37%), a bad geopolitical situation (26%) and a reduced demand for newly built apartments (21%). They believe that all of this together has led to clients being more cautious when planning purchases.
(Biznis i Finansije, 22.12.2023)
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