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Home prices marginally down in 2009 from 2008 levels. home prices declined marginally in nominal terms in 2009 compared with 2008, according to the latest calculations by Absa.
Prices declined in the first half of 2009, but started to rise on a month-on-month basis since May. Taking account of the effect of inflation, home prices continued to decline in real terms up to November last year, although at a much slower pace than earlier in the year. This was the net result of rising prices in nominal terms in the second half of the year, while inflation tapered off to lower levels during this period.
Residential property transaction volumes increased further in the final quarter of 2009 after bottoming in the second quarter of the year. The higher level of activity, as well as rising nominal prices towards the end of last year, came on the back of declining interest rates and the selective relaxation of lending criteria by banks.
Middle-segment home prices (see explanatory notes) were marginally down by a nominal 0,2% in 2009 (+4,1% in 2008), after increasing by 5,6% year-on-year (y/y)
to R1 010 700 in December. In real terms, middle-segment home prices were down by 1,1% y/y in November and down 7,4% y/y in the first eleven months of the year.
The nominal price of small homes (80m²-140m²) was down by an average of 2,8% y/y in 2009 (+5,5% in 2008). Prices dropped by 0,8% y/y to R670 400 in December
last year. The average price of small homes was down by a real 8,8% y/y in November 2009, after declining by a revised 7,4% y/y in October.
Nominal price deflation with regard to medium-sized homes (141m²-220m²),averaged 2,9% in 2009, after positive growth of 4,8% was recorded in 2008. In
December last year nominal price deflation came to 1,5% y/y, which brought the average price in this category of housing to around R931 900. Adjusted for inflation,
prices declined by a real 7,9% y/y in November (-8,7% y/y in October after revision).
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