Prices of residences of all sorts have been on a steady rise since the early ‘90s in the country of Finland. The global financial crisis that occurred in 2008 and the dot-com bubble bursting of 2000 were the only two events that were able to slow the rise down at all, but did not stop it completely. Recently, however, according to Hannu Valojärvi, the CEO of Viva LKV, a medium-size real estate agency that operates in the Greater Helsinki area, has stated that housing prices have finally peaked, and are actually on the way down.
This downward trend in housing prices is linked with the poor confidence that residents of Finland have showed in their economy. According to Statistics Finland, consumer confidence dipped all the way down to 5.1 percent, when it had been at 21.9 percent just a year ago. This is almost as low a score as in 2008 when the last recession hit. This dip in consumer confidence is not credited directly to a recession, however. Instead, it is credited to the highly negative news coming through the media about the European economy as well as the difficulties that the Euro is experiencing.
Valojärvi did comment on this recent turn of events for the housing industry, saying, “Yes, we have experienced a slight downturn in prices that was first noticeable this spring. The average selling times are also a bit longer now than they were a year ago”. While the prices are going down, the confident CEO has remained optimistic, stating, “People are still buying homes on reasonably high volumes, the change isn’t anything too drastic. The main difference from the previous year is that you can no longer ask for a too optimistic price. Buyers are much more wary and price-conscious than before, but once you set the asking price closer to the price in which the homes are bought and sold, you still get good results”.Obviously, this buyer’s market has not phased this real estate agent, who is still seeing the same, if not more, housing sales than previously.
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