Real estate market in Croatia will be resting in 2010 too. Majority of real estate agencies in Croatia will try to forget 2009 as soon as possible.
Prices on the Rijeka market finally stopped on autumn levels at the end of 2009, which is below approximately 20% lower compared to 2008. Any significant progress in the next period is not expected; sales are stagnating, as well as prices and new construction, which was almost completely blocked in 2009, which in turn led to major problems for many engineers. In addition to engineers, the fall in turnover of almost 60% closed many small real estate agencies, of which many were not seriously engaged in this activity.
The fall in sales started as 2008 approached the end and continued in 2009 with an average drop of 50%.
One reason is the global financial crisis and recession, followed by extremely strict new conditions for bank loans, but perhaps the most problematic is the fact that the owners of flats and houses in Croatia are very rarely willing to adjust prices to market conditions, which leads to a small number of sales. The main reason is the emotions that Croats have for their property.
Customers are also much more cautious than during previous years, so even after finding a property that best suits them they decide to wait for a more favorable moment, which is directly linked to the overall recovery of the Croatian economy.
As for Rijeka and surrounding areas, trade takes place only at the suburban positions, where there has been a significant decline in the cost of square meters, while in the city itself it is very difficult to achieve sales. Most analysts believe that it will be so throughout the whole year, while the slow recovery can be expected only in 2011. All in all, those who survive the year in front of us can expect a lot of work and opportunity in the coming period. The Government could also contribute to the recovery with a more active engagement in the market.
The situation is even more difficult for construction companies and engineers. Building land prices fell by almost 50% and even so they are difficult to sell. New projects are still a long way from starting and the situation could go for the better only for 2-3 years.