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House prices in Malta recorded the second-highest annual increase across the EU, as prices increased by 11 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2014, compared to the same period a year earlier, according to Eurostat, the EU statistical agency.
The increase was significantly higher than the EU average of 2.6 per cent and the euro area average of 1.1 per cent. Ireland topped the list with house prices increasing by 16.3 per cent in the last quarter. Sweden, Estonia and the UK saw an increase of 10 per cent. The countries posting the sharpest falls in annual house prices were Slovenia (-4.4 per cent), Cyprus (-3.3 per cent), Latvia (-3.2 per cent) and Italy (-2.9 per cent).
This was the fourth consecutive annual increase in Malta’s house prices last year and the most marked. In the third quarter, the prices had gone up by 3.9 per cent, in the second quarter by 3.5 per cent and by 0.8 per cent in the first quarter. House prices across the EU have been increasing since the middle of 2012 but only entered growth territory in the last three months of 2013. However, house prices in Malta registered the highest quarter-on quarter increase across the EU.Prices in the fourth quarter of 2014 went up by 4.6 per cent, compared to the previous quarter of the same year. Ireland came in second with 3.8 per cent and Slovakia third with 2.1 per cent.
Eurostat uses the House Price Index to measure the price changes of all residential properties purchased by households. This includes flats and detached and terraced houses. The index covers newly built and existing properties, independent of their final use and previous ownership.
source: timesofmalta.com / Eurostat