Argentina’s Real Estate Market: Recovery Started
Good news in Argentina’s real estate: the confirmation of investment in large projects, some already initiated. These include the construction of shopping centres, office buildings and homes. The real estate market was the first that collapsed with the crisis; today it is the first to react, which augurs well for the sector and the economy in general.
The implementation of the changes in economic policy by the new government of Argentina, predictably, these days begins to complete the revival of the real estate market in Argentina.
In the short time that has elapsed since the arrival of the new government, just four months, the mood and expectations of potential real estate investors in Argentina has improved, well ahead of other areas of the economy.
Among the factors that motivate the long-awaited investments is comparison of the margins of potential gains with other major markets in the region. Compared to the crises in Chile and Colombia over the years, in Argentina they have been minor.
Therefore, the relative values of these other markets are not as favourable as to attract the large investments expected for this year and the next in Argentina.
The director of Reporte Inmobiliario, José Rozados, states that “The deficit in the Argentine real estate market is very large and cuts across all social sectors, including the segment of buildings of very good quality that are missing today: proposals for offices, and triple A and luxury homes that are adapted to the needs of this target market, which large developers are looking to cover”.
In these other countries in the region, there is not a high widespread unmet demand. They have maintained a level of permanent and sustained development over time, which means that investments in those countries will be more focused and in more specific niches.
Investment has been small compared to what was logical to expect due to population growth and the need for new homes, offices and shopping centres. This large unmet demand during these years, Argentines and investors solved partially by renovating buildings.
We are not talking about a housing boom, but a concrete and long-awaited revival in the economy. Naturally, when activated, the real estate market begins a virtuous economic cycle.
Circulating money from the sale of properties that were for years waiting for the right buyer, now entered into the banking system, will cause a drop in interest rates, one of the complaints that are still heard amongst banking customers.
A greater recovery in the real estate market, lowering interest rates and thus making available loans for investment, will activate many other sectors of the Argentinean economy.
So far, those specific investments are from those who bring capital from abroad or had capital within the country, because interest rates are still too high to motivate borrowing for investment purposes.
Protagonists of the Reactivation in Argentina’s Real Estate Market
Related Group Development Company
A protagonist of this recovery is the president of the Related Group, Jorge Pérez, Argentinean by birth and the largest developer of the Miami real estate market. Fortune Magazine ranks him among the richest 500 in the United States. In April 2015, he made his first attempt to realize an investment in Argentina, an attempt which failed.
In April this year, Related Group announced the investment of USD 250 million in Puerto Madero. The project includes the construction of a luxury hotel and two residential towers. This announcement was received with great appreciation by the real estate market in Argentina.
Jorge Pérez, during his visit to Argentina, announcing the project, said: “I always wanted to do something in Argentina, but never found the time. We are now convinced that this project will become the icon of Puerto Madero. In the long term, we want to move quickly and we are already seeing other lands in Buenos Aires to finalize a purchase in the short term. The goal is not only to stay with the project of Puerto Madero, but become an important company in the business of real estate and in ten years to be the largest real estate developer in the country.”
Fernández Prieto and Associates
The developer Alberto Fernández Prieto, in association with Vizora – Banco Macro – has also begun works in Puerto Madero. The construction will be two towers of housing for approximately USD 210 million.
This company, controlled by the Elsztain family, who are the owners of most of the shopping centres in the city, has announced an investment plan of USD 460 million for the construction of an office tower in Catalinas and another office development in Saavedra, expanding the Alto Palermo and Arcos District.
A spokesman of the IRZA Group explained: “The fact that we already had purchased land leaves us very well placed for new developments in the good times that will come. We know the industry and we have an experienced team, so we will take this opportunity.”
The CEO of the developer, the Pegasus Group, which has invested USD 25 million in a tower in Caballito, Diego Chevallier-Boutell said: “Consultations from outside are constant, and, once resolved, the issue of debt, we believe, will translate into a specific project.”
The president of Ribera Developers, Carlos Narváez, who plans to build a tower office in the complex Al Río for USD 80 million, says: “Today there is little supply of new offices and I think there will be a time lag between the revival we are starting to see of demand and when new buildings are ready to be occupied.”
In sum, the revival of the real estate market in Argentina is already a fact. Taking into consideration the extensive crisis that preceded and the high unmet demand over the years, it is clear that winds are favourable to increase significantly investments in the short and medium term, i.e. this year and next will see a lot of movement in the sector. The projects just mentioned are some of those in advanced stages of development.
English Editor: Audrey van Ryn
Writer & Translator: Mª Verónica Brain
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