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Sun 9 Oct 2016 01:44 PM

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Kuwait real estate 'stagnant' but may recover in early 2017, experts say

Slowdown in property market in Gulf state is reportedly due to oversupply and low demand

Kuwait real estate 'stagnant' but may recover in early 2017, experts say
A general view taken from Kuwait City. (Yasser Al-Zayyat/AFP/Getty Images)

Kuwait’s real estate market is currently stagnant due to oversupply and low demand, but could possibly recover in early 2017, according to experts.

The local market is normally slow during summer months but is expected to pick up at the end of 2016 when more residents seek to rent apartments, secretary general of the real estate union Qais Al-Ghanim told state news agency KUNA.

Al-Ghanim said rents may drop by $165 (KD50) if demand for residential property does not increase in November and December.

He said a major factor to the slowdown is the move of a large number of investors, who are inexperienced in real estate, from the local stock exchange to the real estate market. He said other factors included the government's recent distribution of residential complexes to citizens and expat investors shifting to the sector.

Al-Ghanim advised citizens planning to buy property to wait until January when prices are expected to drop.

Moreover, property investors are concerned the Central Bank of Kuwait may issue strict regulations for property crediting, according to manager of Al-Musawi Property Company Mohammad Al-Musawi.

Al-Musawi also predicted rent of residential apartments is likely to drop by 15 percent, adding a residential plot located in the Sabah Al-Ahmad beach-side district was earlier traded for $630,000 (KD190,000), but now costs between $350,000 (KD105,000) and $300,000 (KD90,000).

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