The THIRTY-THIRD publication of the RICS Cyprus Property Price Index reports that the average price of residential apartments and houses across the island rose by 0.8% and 1.4% respectively over the fourth quarter of 2017.
RICS Cyprus monitors apartment and house prices in non-coastal areas. Price increases in these areas could be due to a domino effect caused by the demand for properties in the coastal areas of Limassol and Larnaca by overseas investors wanting Citizenship or Permanent Residency.
It will be interesting to see what effect the recent decision by the Council of Ministers to limit the number of citizenship applications to 700 a year will have on house and apartment prices.
Quarterly property price changes
Compared with the third quarter of 2017, prices of houses and apartments rose by 0.8% and 1.4% respectively. Larnaca recorded the largest quarterly increase in apartment prices (up 2.7%), while Limassol reported the largest rise in house prices (up 1.5%).
Prices of holiday homes also rose over the quarter by 0.4% for apartments and 0.3% for houses. The highest increase in holiday apartments was recorded in Paphos (up 1.33%), while Paralimni recorded the largest rise in holiday homes (up 0.9%).
Annual property price changes
Compared to the fourth quarter of 2016, prices of houses and apartments rose by 4.3% and 7.1% respectively. Limassol recorded the highest increase in both house and apartment prices, up by 12.6% and 11.1% respectively.
Meanwhile prices for offices, warehouses and retail over the year rose by 8.3%, 4.4% and 3.1% respectively.
On a quarterly basis, rental values increased 2.9% for apartments, 1.9% for houses, 0.6% for retail, 2.5% for offices and 0.2% for warehouses.
On an annual basis, rental values increased by 13.7% for apartments, 8.2% for houses, 5.9% for retail, 19.2% for offices and 1.8% for warehouses.
Gross rental yields
At the end of the fourth quarter of 2017, average gross rental yields stood at 4.3% for apartments, 2.2% for houses, 5.5% for retail, 4.3% for warehouses, and 5.1% for offices.
The gross rental yield is a useful yardstick as to whether property is over-valued, under-valued or priced correctly. Here is a set of rules of thumb for the housing market from the Global Property Guide:
15% – 20% Very undervalued
10% – 12% Undervalued
8% – Borderline undervalued
6% – 7% Fairly priced
5% – Borderline overvalued
3% – 4% Overvalued
2% – 2.5% Very overvalued