In Some Global Markets, Housing Soars

In the past week, surveyors and a large property sales Web site announced separate findings that showed U.K. home prices had dropped, indicating the country’s real estate boom finally may be over–and that British housing could soon echo the painfully prolonged U.S. housing decline.

That news–along with announcements of stumbling in the financial services sector and at housing industry-related companies like Wolseley–caused minor panic. As a result, stocks fell; the U.K.’s benchmark FTSE 100 Index dropped today by the largest amount since the 2001 Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Which is why maybe it’s time for a little good news about areas around the world that aren’t experiencing a real estate bust.

We’re not saying they’re safe from one ever happening, of course–but, at least for now, the following places are watching residential property value, demand and construction skyrocket:

  • Mexico–President Felipe Calderon set a goal of adding a million new mortgages in Mexico a year by 2010; and organizations like the California Public Employees Retirement System–the largest U.S. public pension fund, which has invested more than $300 million in Mexican real estate funds–are buying in, according to AP.
  • Canada–Although recent reports have indicated this country’s extended real estate boom may be about to falter, certain areas, such as Winnipeg, expect to see double-digit growth and a 10 to 12 percent increase in average home prices this year. In Montreal’s urban area, housing sales have increased 94 percent, according to The Financial Post.
  • Jordan–Currently 4 billion dinars–$5.6 billion–is invested in Jordan’s booming real estate market; that number is expected to shoot up to 20 billion dinars by 2013, a Saudi Arabian-based property developer planning to invest in the area says. Other sectors are feeling the love, too–the increased residential offerings have upped demand for office and other commercial property.
  • Kuwait–Planned construction of new, affordable housing, tax breaks for foreign companies and plans to build a new rail and metro system are all factors in Kuwait’s projected real estate growth, according to to a report conducted by Faraj Al Khudhari, head of Al Mutakhassis Real Estate. National Bank of Kuwait figures show that in 2007, average real estate sales increased by 31 percent and real estate value rose 59 percent.