Japanese property market records rare positive price rise

Monetary easing measures taken earlier this year by the Central Bank of Japan appear to have begun to stimulate the country’s long stagnant property market.

Japanese Blossom

Japanese Blossom

Figures released yesterday by the country’s land ministry reveal that demand for property rose in over half (53 per cent) of selected locations in Japan’s biggest cities – a development which is sparking an increase in land prices. The ministry’s figures show that between 1st January and 1st April 2013, prices increased in 80 of the 150 sites surveyed – the first time in over five years that more than half of the zones surveyed have recorded a rise in values.

Housing starts also rose by 7.3 per cent from a year earlier in March, the seventh consecutive month of higher figures, while bank lending has also increased significantly as more Japanese people look to buy a home.

These figures are seen as being extremely positive by the country’s government. The Japanese property market has been largely dormant since the collapse of the country’s bubble economy in the late 1980s – with land prices reported to have fallen by as much as 70 per cent since then.

Some real estate experts in the country also point to the fact that Japan’s weakening Yen has made the country more appealing to overseas buyers, with some agencies reporting a noticeable spike in foreign purchasers in the more upscale areas of Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya.