Property prices 17% too high

7th April 2008, Comments 0 comments

Real estate in Belgium is overvalued, but Belgians have no cause to worry, says IMF.

7 April 2008

BELGIUM - Property in Belgium is overvalued by 17 percent, according to a report by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). However, the IMF does not expect Belgium to suffer a property price crash similar to that of the United States.

Belgians are not the only Europeans paying over the odds for real estate.

According to the report, property in the Irish Republic and The Netherlands is even more overvalued than it is in Belgium.

Economic analysts that were interviewed on the issue by the financial daily, De Tijd, said that they were not surprised by the figures.

They added that they predict a market correction.

Big differences
The IMF report also highlights the big differences between the mortgage markets in the various countries it studied.

According to the IMF, countries such as the United States, Denmark, Australia and The Netherlands have the "most developed" mortgage markets.

Countries such as Belgium and France are seen as lagging behind.

The IMF concludes that the real estate market has a greater influence on the economy at large in countries such as the United States, than it does in countries with less developed markets such as Belgium.

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