The global house price crash has been gathering steam for the last year and now it’s rattling along.
In Sweden, property prices have dropped 15 percent from their peak in March last year, and they haven’t stopped falling yet.
In some parts of the country, prices have crashed 40 percent.
In Denmark, prices fell 10 percent last year and the slide is accelerating. They’ve already fallen 5.91 percent in the first three months of this year, IMF figures show.
Scandinavia is far from alone.
In Australia, prices have fallen 7.9 percent in a year, the country’s largest decline ever. They’re forecast to fall another 10 percent this year.
The New Zealand property market has crashed more than 20 percent from its peak in November 2021. It’s still falling.
In Canada, prices are down 15 percent and forecast to drop another 12 percent this year.
Not every country is in meltdown. In France, prices held firm last year but are expected to drop between seven and 10 percent in 2023.
Germany has also held firm, although Deutsche Bank macroeconomic analyst Jochen Moebert is predicting a 25 per cent drop.
The US has largely held, despite a 33 percent crash in tech hub San Francisco.
Prices are falling in countries as diverse as Columbia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Norway, Indonesia, Finland, Italy, Korea, Chile, South Africa, China, India and Saudi Arabia.
So what about the UK?
In February, UK house prices actually rose 1.2 percent, according to Halifax. They edged up another 0.8 percent in March.
Measured over one year, they are up 1.6 percent.
It makes little sense, as we all know UK property is horrendously overvalued.
For decades, the average home cost around three to four times salary. Today, it costs more than nine times salary, and over 12 in London.
What did the Bank of England expect to happen when it slashed base rates to nothing then kept them there for a decade?
Mortgage rates fell to as low as 0.99 percent as a result and we all knew a reckoning was due.
It nearly came last autumn, when mortgage rates shot past 6.5 percent after former Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng’s mini-Budget madness.
Rates have since retreated below four percent but if inflation stays sticky – and it’s looking like it – they may start climbing again.
So will the UK finally get swept up in the global house price crash?
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