Swiss house prices plummet as country reels from interest rate hike
The cost of buying a house in Switzerland has finally started to fall, according to a new study from the consulting group Fahrländer Partner (FPRE). Experts said that house prices reached their “absolute peak” in 2022, with the Swiss National Bank predicting that prices may continue to fall.
Average value of homes in Switzerland fall
According to their data, the average value of houses in Switzerland has fallen by 10 percent since the start of 2023. Property is now 13,4 percent cheaper than in mid-2022 when the organisation recorded house prices to be at their highest.
Falling prices varied hugely by region, with the most significant drops recorded in both Appenzells (-17,6 percent), Obwalden (-17,3) and Solothurn (-16,5). Average costs in Zurich also fell by over 10 percent, while the smallest price correction was recorded in Canton Uri (-8,4 percent).
Higher interest rates and price corrections blamed
FPRE explained that the main driver of lower prices is the higher interest rates on Swiss mortgages, which has made housing less affordable and less profitable as an asset for pension providers, funds and other companies that invest in property. A rebalancing based on “fundamental factors” was also blamed, namely the fact that buying a home is still an average of 45 percent more expensive than renting in the long term.
The price fluctuations have also drawn the attention of the government and national institutions. In their latest economic report, the Swiss National Bank predicted that the fall in property prices “could very well continue” into the future.
Buying a house in Switzerland remains expensive
However, before we start calling our banks and dreaming of a small cottage in the Mittelland, FPRE noted that even with the recent fall in prices, housing is still 154 percent more expensive than it was at the beginning of the century, and Swiss cities are still rated as having some of the most overpriced homes in the world. Experts added that while the 10 percent drop is dramatic, property prices are only back to where they were in 2019.
Higher interest rates on Swiss mortgages have also made it less affordable for regular people to buy. Therefore, it is unlikely that housing has become any more affordable thanks to the drop in prices.