• USA best real estate investment in the world
• England’s strong property market makes it to the final
• Brazilian boom tops property price table
• Follow World Cup housing market head-to-heads with #TMCWorldCup
Demand was measured by the percentage of TheMoveChannel.com enquiries received by each country in 2013. Accessibility to overseas investors was ranked by number of properties currently listed for sale on the overseas property portal. Appeal was determined by the number of Google searches for property in the country during May 2014, while price growth was measured in both the short term (six months) and long term (12 month) using data from Knight Frank’s Global House Price Index .
“Combined, these factors give an indicator of both the investment potential for a country’s property and its overall health,” explains Ivan Radford, Editor of TheMoveChannel.com.
Countries were then compared using the five categories – or, where price data was unavailable, three categories.
“The odd number of factors also conveniently lets us pit the nations against each other head-to-head in a property-themed penalty shootout where there can only be one winner,” adds Radford.
The full #TMCWorldCup Statistics League Table:
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Group Stages: Traditional buyer favourites advance
The top two countries were chosen from every World Cup group based on the most important factor: demand. The number of enquiries received in 2013 combined with the number of Google searches saw Brazil and Croatia top Group A. Group B was dominated by investor-friendly Spain and Australia. Group C was won by Greece and Japan. Europe’s England and Italy emerged as the main players from Group D. Switzerland and France progressed from Group E. Popular lifestyle rivals Portugal and USA advanced from Group G. Belgium and Russia were Group H’s best markets.
Traditional buyer favourites advanced. The high demand for Greek property (3,380 searches) offset its falling prices (8.4 per cent year-on-year) to take the country past Japan, despite the relative health of Japanese property values. French real estate outperformed Swiss, with soaring interest from investors and a high number of listings (66,958) outpacing Switzerland’s low demand and high prices.
Final 16: Brazil booms, Italy improves
Following the traditional World Cup format, the winners of each group faced off against the runners-up of their neighbour.
Brazil’s property boom catapulted it past Australia, despite Oz’s popularity among expat buyers. Demand for Brazilian real estate has soared in the last year, taking up a strong 4.46 per cent of enquiries on TheMoveChannel.com, despite a low number of listings (74). Brazilian property prices are the strongest of the World Cup line-up, rising 12.1 per cent year-on-year, even higher than the USA (10.3 per cent year-on-year).
Italy’s property market has also improved significantly since the financial crash, a rebound that is evident in its showdown with Greece. While both have similar levels of appeal (3,860 searches to 3,380), Italy’s sellers are more confident, with 17,065 listings on the market compared to 3,023 in Greece. That confidence has inspired investors, with Italy attracting 2.92 per cent of enquiries in 2013, more than double Greece’s 1.43 per cent.
Spanish property also proved itself a major force among buyers: the country’s Costas are among the most popular overseas destinations on TheMoveChannel.com, a fact emphasised by the country’s 5-0 victory over recent EU member Croatia.
Quarter-Finals: England emerges as strong contender
US property continued its dominance of global property with a comprehensive trouncing of France by 4 to 1. France outperformed America in appeal, clocking up 32,900 searches against America’s 2,010, boosted by the country’s historic low mortgage rates. US real estate, though, triumphed in every other category, racking up an unrivalled 21.36 per cent of enquiries.
Brazil went from strength to strength with a 3-2 battering of Italy: even with the European market’s improvement, evidenced by its volume of searches and active listings, its falling prices paled in comparison to the Latin American market’s positive growth.
Portugal also established itself as a European favourite by trumping Switzerland by 3 to 2, a late own goal from a 2.1 per cent drop in house prices in the last six months not dampening the striking power of Portugal’s 141,888 listings for sale and 5.29 per cent of enquiries.
England delivered the biggest upset of the Property World Cup by knocking out buyer favourite Spain. England’s share of 2013 activity was an impressive 12.79 per cent, not quite enough to match Spain’s 14.38 per cent, but sentiment is strong on British soil. While Spain’s search volume was higher, England’s economy has enjoyed solid growth in the past year, with property values up 9.1 per cent annually thanks to strong demand and low supply.
Semi-Finals: USA beats Brazil
England continued its roaring run through the semi-finals past Portugal. While the slowly recovering Portuguese market has seen prices increase 1.2 per cent year-on-year, England’s 9.1 per cent price surge indicates its relatively higher level of confidence: the number of UK listings on TheMoveChannel.com has increased by 50 per cent in the last 12 months, a trend only topped by soaring demand for buy-to-let property and student housing investments. England 4, Portugal 1.
US property also proved itself more consistent than Brazil. North America knocked out its South America rival by 3 to 2, proving that while World Cup fever has seen Brazil’s prices rise by a staggering 12.1 per cent and enquiries reach historic highs, the emerging destination is still not enough to compete with the stability of an established market.
Final: US property takes the trophy
USA took home the Property World Cup trophy, narrowly beating runner-up England in a tense final. England’s price growth in the last six months sprinted past America’s (5.6 per cent versus -0.2 per cent). Its higher number of listings then drove home a tantalising equaliser. But US real estate took the lead with its stronger search count and unbeatable share of enquiries.
TheMoveChannel.com Editor Ivan Radford comments: “US property has consistently dominated demand on TheMoveChannel.com in the last 12 months, but by taking into account other market factors, it is surprising how close England’s property came to beating that of its pan-Atlantic competitor; regardless of the struggles domestic UK buyers may be facing, overseas investors can see a very different picture of a property market. Nowhere is that more evident than in Brazil, where an international investment boom took the emerging country all the way to the semi-finals.”
“Of course, in real life, USA do not stand a chance of winning the World Cup,” adds Radford. “But the #TMCWorldCup shows just how different things could be if real estate were the 12th man on the pitch. That is why TheMoveChannel.com shall be following the World Cup all through the tournament, picking a match of the day and comparing their housing markets using the #TMCWorldCup hashtag.
“Who would win in a tussle between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Argentina? Or Mexico and Croatia? By using the results of each match to dictate our head-to-head rankings, we aim to give a broader picture of property markets worldwide. And after the disappointing final result in our own World Cup, prove that in real life, there is still a chance that England could win!”