Wanted: more research on European property markets!

The residential property market is an important element of the European economy, but not enough is known about its effect on the overall economy and the internal market. In the current financial crisis, the importance of the real estate sector and its impact on other areas of European policy is more apparent than ever. For a long time already, CEPI has been calling for more information and analysis about the European property market…
A recent 2009 study, « Real Estate as an economic factor – the Real Estate markets viewed as part of the overall economy », is a very good example of the type of analysis we are calling for. In his report, the authors analyse and quantify the importance of the real estate sector in Germany. To quote only a few figures, in 2006, the property industry included 707,000 firms with 3.8 million employees. The turnover of the sector was 384 billion €, and it accounted for 22% of all companies, 10% of all employees and 8% of total turnover in the German federal economy. Around 55% of all loans were secured against property, and the total volume for lending for private property finance was almost 1.3 trillion €. In 2006 the property industry contributed 389 billion € or 18.6% of the value creation in the whole economy.
Published earlier this year in the German Journal of Real Estate Economics (ZIÖ), the study deals with the stock of property, the value of real estate industry to value creation and employment, the property prices and rents, compares the German situation with the international market and finally looks into real estate and provision for old age, concluding that property ownership has become a very popular form of private investment. More details (the short version in English as well as the full report in German), can be found on the Gesellschaft für Immobilienwirtschafliche Forschung * - gif e.V. website.
The growth of the internal market has led to greater cross-border investment and also greater interest on the part of property professionals to work in countries other than their country of origin. Much more research of this kind is needed to make sure property professionals are well informed and can provide the best services possible in all EU countries. (11/12/2009)

* The gif eV represents a multidisciplinary approach to real estate research and aims at bringing together theory and practice of real estate industry and the promotion of European and global dimension of research.