Portugal was at the top of the house price hike last year. A fourth quarter rise of 9.3% equals Luxembourg and the Netherlands, surpassed only by some countries in Eastern Europe – Slovenia (18.2%), Latvia (11.8%) and Czech Republic (9.9%)
Prices in the EU and the Eurozone have increased by an average of 4.2% over the past year while in some countries house prices have fallen, such as in Italy – by 0.6%.
This ever-increasing house price inflation has caused some alarm, as it largely driven by the ultra-expansionary monetary policy by the European Central Bank with interest rates at 0%.
There are fears that bubbles may form in European real estate with the International Monetary Fund warning of the overvaluation of house prices.
The body led by Christine Lagarde expects real estate prices to fall sharply in the next three years.