What is happening with interest rates, why, and what can you do?

What is happening with interest rates?

Interest rates rise and fall, we have been in a secular-ZIRP (zero interest rate policy) environment for quite some time and as people who subscribe to the monetarist school of thought, this would always lead to inflation which we are seeing now, albeit a fairly delayed response given how long this policy has been in place.

Why?

Not too long ago the yield curve was negative 20 years into the future such was the dismal outlook of markets for any level of inflation, but then you had a pandemic, the ‘great resignation’ and between labor and supply constraints along with monetary policy effects, there is inflation you haven’t seen in 40 years. Now the curve is negative only one year into the future and the price in the money markets has risen.

Just to clarify this, many mortgage providers get their money by buying it (you buy at X + interest rate and then ‘sell’ it to borrowers at X+margin [which is ideally above the price you bought it at]). In an oversimplified manner, …

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European property and mortgages: Frankfurt

Residential real estate is as popular as ever. Many people fulfill their dream of owning their own home with a one- or two-family house or a condominium. High demand is driving real estate prices to infinity. The problem of housing shortages is on the rise. Forecasting future prices is not that easy. Rents could rise even further due to excess demand. Many are therefore looking for alternatives. These include buying condominiums or single-family homes.

The average asking price for a condominium in Germany was €3,748 per square meter in the first half of 2021. This represents an increase of 15.1 percent compared with the first half of 2020. In previous years, the annual increase had still been around ten percent. One- and two-family houses and terraced houses were offered for an average of 350,000 euros, representing an increase of 12.9 percent.

However, this does not apply equally to all of Germany. There are significant regional differences. The best example here is eastern Germany, which is still considerably cheaper than western Germany. It doesn’t matter whether we’re talking about condominiums and …

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European mortgages explained: Czech Republic

About Czech Republic

The Czech Republic ia a state in Central Europe. It is a landlocked state of 78,870 km2. It is bordered by Germany, Austria, Poland and Slovakia. The capital city is Prague. The Czech Republic is a market economy country that belongs to the highly developed countries of the world, according to economic, social and political indicators. Economically it belongs to the world’s 31 riches nations with the highest financial incomes, according to the World Bank. The unemployment rate has been low for a long time and below the average for developed countries.

History of the Czech Republic

Czech Republic was first populated by Celts 4th century. In 863, the Byzantine missionaries Constantin and Methodius come to the part of the present-day Czech Republic and introduced Slavic liturgy there. The defeat of Austria-Hungary in World war 1 cleared the way for the foundation of an independent state of Czechoslovakia, which was founded on October 28, 1918. The first president of Czechoslovakia was Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk. On January 1, 1993, Czechoslovakia was divided into two independent states: Czech Republic …

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Irish Mortgage Brokers featured in the Irish Times

We were mentioned in the Irish Times in a piece by Cliff Taylor about the increase in the number of people seeking to refinance their home.

Rather than a fear of higher interest rates, Karl Deeter, of Irish Mortgage Brokers, believes it is primarily driven by people facing tightening (link to article here)

The crux of the point being made is that as inflation is affecting people and rates look set to rise that it is naturally driving people to consider ways to get better prices on one of their biggest outgoings and to get some assurance on what the price levels of their outgoings will be.

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How to buy a property in Germany

To be able to buy a property in Germany you must be extremely well prepared. The real estate market is currently in the seller market, which means that the seller has a better market position than the buyer due to the high demand. For a house purchase in Germany to succeed, you have to consider the following.

First of all, and this is the most important point, is financing. To improve creditworthiness, you need to raise a high level of equity. That’s why it’s important to start saving early. Only when you have saved enough money, you can ask the bank for a loan. In order to get a loan from one, some requirements apply. On the one hand, you must have reached the age of 18, on the other hand, you must be able to prove that you have a German residence. Furthermore, the conditions apply that you may not have any debt entries and should have a sufficient regular income. In the price calculation step, the ancillary costs should not be ignored. These usually amount to an additional …

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History of the Landesbank (Bavaria)

In Germany, Landesbanken are credit institutions that carry out banking transactions for individual federal states and support the state in promoting the economy.

The history of the legal predecessors of today’s Landesbanken often dates back to the 18th century. In their now familiar form, the banks emerged in the years after World War II, when the German states issued their first state bonds with the help of the Landesbanken. In the respective federal state for which they carry out banking transactions and act in an advisory capacity, they perform a kind of house bank function. In addition, the Landesbanken are authorized to conduct all banking transactions permitted under their statutes. In this respect, they have been operating on the market for years as general commercial or universal banks.

The business model of the Landesbanken has faced a dilemma since the abolition of institutional burden and guarantor liability in 2005; on the one hand, they conduct banking business for their federal state, but on the other hand, they are on a par with private banks and have to hold their own …

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European mortgages explained: Switzerland

Mortgages in Switzerland have a basic, straightforward idea but are subject to rather strict lending rules. Banks are currently using a 4.5% theoretical interest rate as a reference. Some are even using a 5% sample rate. On top of that, they are accounting for 1% amortization per year. And depending on the bank, they will account for between 0.5% and 1% in maintenance costs. Furthermore, the cost of the chosen property can’t be higher than 33% of the income. So the 5% of the mortgage needs to be smaller than 33% of the income. In general, the mortgage will be 80% of the house value.

If you live in Switzerland with a residency permit B or permit C, you can apply for a mortgage and buy a property in Switzerland. If you don’t have residency, it’s slightly more complicated. Under the Lex Koller law – which limits purchases of Swiss property by foreigners – non-residents must apply for a license to buy from their cantonal authority.

There are a few additional costs when buying a Swiss home. These generally equate …

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European mortgages explained: Germany

There are many particularities regarding mortgages in Germany.

Several requirements need to be fulfilled to qualify; they differ from employees to self-employed and freelancers. Unfortunately, each lender has its own set of criteria which makes qualification a difficult process. But there are general guidelines and specific required documents. These documents have to be provided to the lender in German language.

German self-disclosure questionnaire property assessment proof of employment (2–12 months of payslips) freelancers must provide additional proof of income and net worth including two years of balance sheets, business, and economic evaluation, and prior year’s tax returns latest tax returns proof of available equity to cover the purchase fees Extract from the Land Register for the previous six weeks

In addition, foreign buyers will need to provide copies of their passports and, in some cases, a residency permit. Of importance is also the disposable income which is calculated by taking the monthly net income and deducting all recurring fixed costs, like insurance, rent, etc. For average incomes, a general rule of thumb is that the mortgage monthly payments cannot exceed …

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The economy of Nuremberg

Nuremberg is the second-largest city in Bavaria after Munich. According to the population register in December 2021 530,222 people had a registered main residence in Nuremberg. Within the last two Corona years, Nuremberg’s population has thus declined by 1.1%. The main reason for this is the Corona pandemic. Since October 2021, the number of inhabitants has been increasing significantly again. According to the Nuremberg and Fürth Statistical Information System, about 32.000 people moved away from Nuremberg in the year 2021.

Nuremberg was ranked among the top 25 cities with the best quality of life worldwide in a study (Worldwide Quality of Living Survey) conducted by the consulting firm Mercer, and was ranked sixth among German cities in 2010.

The overall quality of living and satisfaction of the population is continually determined every three years in most German cities. The last survey took place in 2019 with over 1,000 participants. More than 80% of all attendees from Nuremberg were satisfied with the public areas such as markets, squares, and pedestrian zones in their city. The condition of roads and buildings as …

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Nuremburg property market

Nuremberg isn’t known as a significant real estate location even though it has been the economic and cultural centre of Northern Bavaria for years. But lower prices than in more prominent German cities, make buying property in Nuremberg a good investment.

The property market is growing steadily which can be seen in a renewed high level of real estate transaction volume in 2021. At EUR 1.39 billion, the sales volume was indeed about a tenth below the previous year’s figure, but it was still slightly above the average of the last five years. The top position was taken by the segment of institutional housing with a generated transaction volume of around EUR 525 million. The surpassing of last year’s figure by +6% is an indicator to a continuing interest in residential investments in Nuremberg.

The office segment showed a contradictory development in 2021 with only EUR 286 million or 61% less than the previous year due to a lack of opportunities.  Since there were no large-volume sales (above EUR 100 million) observed the highest office transaction amounted to almost EUR …

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