Germany is traditionally known for its renting culture, but a combination of low interest rates and the ongoing uncertainty in the Eurozone is tentatively pushing the German people onto the property ladder, reports the Financial Times.
The European Central Bank’s base rate of 0.25% has proved less than popular in a land where 10% of the national income is dedicated to savings. However, this policy has also had the inverse effect of offering would-be homeowners the deal of a lifetime on Germany’s common ten-year fixed-rate mortgages.
Michael Stegerwald, a seller of kitchens in Frankfurt who, in 2013, had his most successful year yet said: “This phrase ‘betongold‘ (‘concrete gold’) is very common. People here don’t want to own property. But they now feel they must because there’s no interest on savings. All you can do is buy real or concrete gold.”
In Frankfurt’s most expensive district, Westend, prices rose to €6,000 per square metre in 2013 – an increase of almost 25% on 2011 – according to property researcher, BulwienGesa. Across the city as a whole, prices rose by 18% to €4,000 per square metre. An apartment of a hundred square metres in Frankfurt now costs around …read more