Latest statistics for 2014 point to a stabilisation in the Brazilian property market. Growth in both house prices and launches are expected to be moderate this year in keeping with a mature market. Experts do, however, predict pockets of higher growth in 2015, particularly in the northeast of the country in areas such as Fortaleza.
According the national property price index FipeZap, property in Brazil rose by 6.7 per cent in 2014, considerably below the 2013 figure of 13.74 per cent. Property construction maintained a high rate with the number of new-build launches up by 42 per cent. The average price per square metre reached R$7,537 with considerable regional variations – the highest was in Rio de Janeiro (R$10,893).
Analysts highlight the fact that 2014 was an unusual year in Brazil with three major events – a very late carnival season, the FIFA World Cup and presidential elections – all contributing to a slowdown in the property market. The same experts also point out that the 2014 statistics prove the Brazilian property market is reaching maturity after a growth rate of 190 per cent over four years. With a housing shortage of 15.4 million homes, there is still massive room for growth within the market, but experts are unanimous in that this will now take place at a sustainable rate.
One of the places with particularly strong growth during 2014 was the metropolitan area of Fortaleza, capital of Ceará in northeast Brazil. The city saw an investment of R$5 billion in new-build launches last year, an increase of 42 per cent on 2013. In total, some 60 residential projects (around 8,000 units) were launched in Fortaleza.
FipeZap reports an increase of 8 per cent in property prices in the city and an average square metre price of R$5,532. However, these figures don’t reflect price rises in some of Fortaleza’s more affluent areas. In districts such as Guararapes and Papicu, both highly sought-after because of their excellent infrastructure, per square metre prices reach R$11-12,000.
Fortaleza property developers claim this year will continue 2014’s strong growth trend. There’s certainly demand – the Brazilian Chamber for the Construction Industry (CBIC in Brazilian) claims the city has a housing shortage of 124,701 units. This shortage will become more acute with the rapid expansion of Pecem Port creating over 130,000 jobs in its bid to become Brazil’s main cargo hub.