November 30, 2022

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House Hunting in Peru: A Modern Mountain Perch Above Lima

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There is no central database for property transactions in Peru. Mr. Becerra estimated average prices in the city’s Lima Top sector, which includes La Molina, Miraflores, San Isidro, San Borja, Surco and Barranco, at about $2,288 a square meter ($215 a square foot). In the less affluent neighborhoods of the Modern Lima sector, including Jesús María, San Miguel, Lince, Magdalena del Mar, Pueblo Libre and Surquillo, where demand is higher, prices average $1,871 a square meter ($175 a square foot), he said. In new developments across the city, prices rose 7 percent year over year, a reflection of perennial demand for housing, Mr. Becerra said.

Demand remains strong at the middle and lower end of the market, said Jose Luis Alzamora, CEO of TALE Inmobiliaria, a Lima property developer. “The main offices of everything are in Lima,” he said. “That’s always put pressure on people who want to live here. That’s why we sell to working-class buyers, who need to buy somewhere to live, rather than the A market, who are now diversifying and largely stopping their investment in Peru.”

Mr. Zalaquett of Keller Williams said the “sweet spot” for Lima apartments outside the wealthiest neighborhoods ranges from $80,000 to $150,000.

A report from AESI, the real estate association, estimated that average prices across metropolitan Lima rose 14.7 percent from February 2021 to February 2022. According to data from the Central Reserve Bank of Peru shared by Mr. Becerra, prices per square meter are expected to increase 6 percent by the end of 2022. But Mr. Tassara, the developer, attributed rising prices to higher construction costs, “not because the market’s incredible.”

Middle-income Peruvians power Lima’s property market, Mr. Alzamora said. “People continue to get mortgages to buy their first home, or to move somewhere better than where they are,” he said. “Politics may worry them a bit, but they have more confidence than wealthy buyers.” The biggest challenge, he said, is finding buildable land to address a perennial housing shortage.

Michael Kaminer

2022-04-20 09:00:46

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