Society - There has been an increase in the volumes of new houses entering the market, but while the volume increase has reduced the gap between demand and supply, there is yet no evidence of falling house prices, says Namene Kalili, the manager for research and competitor intelligence at FNB Namibia.
The increase in prices has however been slow with only the central area of the country registering an actual decrease in house prices for the middle-income segment, affected mainly by the National Housing Enterprise (NHE) housing development in Otjomuise, Windhoek, which added a mere 9 percent to total volumes trade in the market.
It was the first time in seven months that the prices moved downward, according to the FNB Housing Index released yesterday.
'Supply has begun shifting towards the middle to lower price segments, which lowered the median house price for October. But one month does not cause a trend and therefore increased supply of new housing stock in the middle to lower price segments over a few more months is required to sustain the decline in the median house prices. Unfortunately there was very little evidence of increased affordable housing supply in the near term and thus the October house prices were merely a temporary relief,' according to Kalili.
Annual figures indicate that house prices in Windhoek continue to increase. Okahandja property prices have risen 28 percent, Gobabis prices are up 18 percent, and the prices for the northern areas increased 13.2 percent. The increase in the northern prices is due to an increase in house prices in the lower price segment on the back of weak volumes.
Land delivery remained weak with three stands mortgaged at N$207/m2, which was 49 percent higher than the September average. Property developers mortgaged 41 000m2 of land with a maximum yield potential for 95 homes in Okahandja.