29 augustus 2020
Wealthy Belgians, but also Dutch, Germans and Luxembourgers, bought massive luxury real estate on the coast in the summer months. This is evident from a survey by De Tijd.
The coast is heading for a new record year. ‘Our office was closed for two months due to the lockdown. Today, after an unprecedented summer sale, we have already sold property for 190 million euros. That is almost as much as in the whole of 2019, ‘says Stéphanie Cambier of the Cambier De Nil real estate agency in Knokke. The office completed six transactions in the € 5 million class this summer. Immo Brown, a niche player in the top-class segment, recorded 19 transactions this summer with an average price of 2.7 million euros.
Especially the interest in new construction is very high. Many buyers prefer ready-to-move-in, but there is none. That is why they often buy on plan. ‘The Lake District (Ghelamco) project was only launched on the market six weeks ago. 55 of the 162 units have already been sold. It will only be delivered in two years’, says real estate agent Gregory De Bisscop of Immo Bis. He expects to double his turnover this year.
Due to corona, Belgians prefer to invest on their own coast than in Spain, for example. ‘There are not only more second-time residents. More elderly people want to live permanently on the coast and invest a larger amount than second-time residents, ‘says Bart Van Opstal, a civil-law notary in Ostend.
‘It is striking that regardless of the price range of a project, the more expensive properties in that project are sold the fastest’, emphasizes David Degroote of Degroote Vastgoed. The group already sold 127 apartments this summer, especially in Ostend, more than double that of last year. He speaks of a price increase of 3 to 7 percent in three months.
High prices are paid in Knokke. Apartments on the dike are sold for prices from 8,000 euros to 27,000 euros per m². For increasingly scarce building land in the Zoute, 2,500 euros per m² is being paid.
In Belgium, 747 houses and 237 apartments worth at least 1 million euros were sold last year, according to figures from Statbel, the federal statistical service. Knokke was responsible for almost half of those apartments.