“Germany is a popular destination,” said Simon Mallinson, director of European research at global investment management firm Invesco in address to the Global Investment Club webinar.
“Business travel is increasing, tourism is increasing as well and the hotel market is another strong performer in the German market,” he added.
Invesco is focussed on the commercial property sector, but commercial growth will always drive residential growth, as companies need staff and staff need houses. Apart from that though, the residential sector in Germany is attracting increasing attention because of its unique characteristics.
Germany has never had a property boom. Germany has a renter culture, with just over 40% of German households owning their home. Because of this the government restricts rent rises in line with wage rises, and because of the renter culture, rents control prices (people won’t buy if it is cheaper to rent).
In the recent overseas property boom some claimed — and not for the first time — that Germany’s boom was just around the corner. None the less most buyers were still buying to hold. People’s main reason for buying in Germany is that, while yields may not be spectacular, and growth neither, that it was a safe investment, with rentals plus whatever capital growth adding up to a good investment.
A few markets attracted buyers for the same reason, but have since seen their stability shattered. Meanwhile Germany’s stability has become set in stone. Because of the massive amounts of money lost during the crash, today’s buyer is now buying for stability, and for rental income, with capital growth being considered a bonus. This is of course benefiting Germany hugely.