Portugal pledges review of golden visa scheme


Porto, where demand from foreign investors is pushing up property prices

By Kate Youde

Five property stories making global headlines:

Lisbon looks to divert visa funds from property to jobs

Portugal’s socialist government is to review its golden visa scheme with the aim of diverting investment from property to new jobs. Nearly 8,000 non-EU foreign investors have gained residency under the programme since 2012 in exchange for stakes of between €250,000 and €500,000 in various sectors, according to Reuters. However, 90 per cent of the €4.8bn invested in total has gone into property, contributing to rising housing costs in Lisbon and Porto.

Hamptons homes getting pricier

House prices in the Hamptons have risen for the first time in almost two years, increasing 5.5 per cent year on year to a median of $857,000 in the third quarter. Forbes reported that the growth, observed by property consultancy Miller Samuel and estate agent Douglas Elliman Real Estate, was the first annual rise in seven quarters in Long Island’s summer escape for wealthy New Yorkers.

The median price of a Hamptons home comes in at more than $850,000

First-time buyers exploit Hong Kong mortgage changes

Property sales in protest-hit Hong Kong doubled in two weeks following the easing of borrowing restrictions for first-time buyers last month, according to local estate agent Midland Realty. Bloomberg reported a surge in sales after the government increased the amount a first-time buyer with a 10 per cent deposit is allowed to borrow to HK$8m ($1m).

First-time buyers in Hong Kong can now borrow up to $1m

Dubai developer defies oversupply concerns

Deyaar Development will begin construction of a second phase of 11 buildings at its Dubai Production City project this month, despite wider concerns about a slowdown in the emirate’s property market. Reporting on the $218m scheme, which is expected to take 30 months to complete, The National noted that Hussain Sajwani, chairman of another developer, Damac Properties, had recently called for a pause in housebuilding for up to two years because of oversupply.

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Deyaar Development is not deterred by Dubai’s property market slowdown

Sinking feeling for UK homeowners

Rising flood risk means homeowners in the UK face higher insurance premiums. More than 1.9m households are predicted to be at risk of flooding by 2050, according to research from data provider MSCI. The Financial Times covered the report, which suggested the effects of climate change will lead to a doubling of the number of UK households at risk of flooding over the next three decades.

The number of UK homes at risk of flooding is set to double over the next 30 years

Photographs: Dreamstime



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