Weak sales force homeowners to negotiate prices

Weak sales force homeowners to negotiate prices

Gülistan Alagöz - ISTANBUL
Weak sales force homeowners to negotiate prices

Homeowners who want to sell their properties in the market are now more willing to negotiate prices as existing home sales continue to decline.

Home sales plunged for a fifth month in a row in June. In the month, only 84,000 homes changed hands, pointing to a steep 44 percent decline from a year ago with existing home sales plunging more than 45 percent to around 58,000.

In the first half of the year, the housing market contracted 22 percent with 566,000 homes sold during this period.

Potential homebuyers are reconsidering their decision to buy a house as they face problems in accessing loans and exorbitant prices in the market.

Homeowners, who asked for “unrealistic” prices for their properties when the housing market was vibrant, are now lowering the prices, said the representatives from the sector.

Those who in the past months refused to sell their homes at a lower price are leaving the door open to negotiations with potential homebuyers, they said.

Home prices are not declining across the board, but some homeowners are adapting to the market reality, according to Hakan Akdoğan, the president of the All Entrepreneur Real Estate Consultants Association (TÜGEM).

“Those who put up their homes for sale in the market with a big price tag are lowering the prices now. When the market for existing homes was vibrant, we saw exorbitant prices. Now, there is a correction in the market,” he said.

Some homeowners raised the prices of their homes almost on a weekly basis, but nowadays they are ready to sit and negotiate the prices with potential buyers, Akdoğan added.

“Because home sales are plunging… Some property owners offer discounts in the range between 10 to 15 percent.”

Owners of houses have lost the upper hand, now the buyers are enjoying having the advantageous position to negotiate the prices in the secondhand home market, said Gökhan Taş, the president of MasterTürk Group, which works with hundreds of real estate agents.

“If the price of a house is the same as it was before the [May] elections, it in fact means the price declined by 30 percent in U.S. dollar terms. Prices are not going up, just because the dollar has gained value [against the Turkish Lira],” he explained.

Taş, however, argued that those who plan on buying a house should not expect the prices of existing and new homes to decline. “This simply won’t happen.”

The Central Bank reported earlier this month that the year-on-year increase in the residential property price index continued to slow. The index rose by 103.6 in May from a year ago, down from 121 percent rise recorded in the previous month.

home owners, Türkiye, Economy,