The value of prime property in the world’s key cities rose 1.4 per cent in the second quarter, the highest level of growth for this sector in 18 months, according to data from Knight Frank.
The firm’s Prime Global Cities Index tracks the price of the top 5 per cent of the mainstream housing market; it has been “largely subdued” ever since it hit a low in the second quarter of 2009, Knight Frank said, with quarterly growth averaging 0.8 per cent.
Property prices in Europe and Asia contributed heavily to the strong second-quarter performance. At the end of Q1, Asia had registered a fall of -2.5 per cent in luxury property prices; by the end of Q2, year-to-date growth was at 3.4 per cent. Likewise, Europe’s sector was down 3.4 per cent in the year to March, but had bounced back to record year-to-date growth of 1.3 per cent in June.
In Asia, emerging centers such as Jakarta and Bangkok were driving movement, as opposed to the traditional powerhouses of Singapore and Hong Kong, said the property consultants. Bangkok clocked up quarterly growth of 15.6 per cent, with prices rising 28.8 per cent on a 12-month basis to June, putting it in the top spot of the growth tables. Jakarta edged in a close second with 12-month growth of 28.5 per cent.
In Europe, the crisis may actually have contributed to – rather than muted – prime property’s performance. As such, prime property buyers now view European cities in “two tiers,” according to the report – those that are best sheltered from bailouts and debt debacles, and those that aren’t.
London was at number five in the growth tables, having registered growth in Q2 of 2.7 per cent. On a 12-month basis, prime property prices in the 2012 Olympics host city were up 10.5 per cent. Geneva and Zurich also featured in the top 10, with 12-month growth of 6 per cent and 5.9 per cent respectively.
James Price, of Knight Frank’s international residential development team, said prime property buying patterns in the US and Europe were still characterized by “a flight to safety.” For the rest of the year, however, Knight Frank predicts that Europe’s “economic frailty” and cooling measures in Asia will hold down price inflation in both mainstream and prime markets.
Of the US cities to feature highly in the growth tables, Miami came in top with 12-month growth of 13.4 per cent and second-quarter growth of 19.7 per cent. New York was the second-ranked US city, with 12-month growth of 7.4 per cent.