The price of Alpine properties has reached record highs

The price of Alpine properties has reached record highs
The price of Alpine properties has reached record highs

Prices of holiday accommodation in Switzerland increased in the first quarter but are expected to stagnate during the year, indicates a UBS study on Tuesday, which places Verbier in pole position among the most expensive tourist destinations in the Alps.

To afford a second home in Verbier, you have to pay 21,500 francs per square meter (archives).

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In the first quarter, prices for vacation properties in all Swiss regions assessed by UBS increased by 4% year-on-year, with a jump of 18% for Arosa, reveals the “UBS Alpine Property Focus 2024” study.

A second home in Verbière costs 21,500 francs per square meter, placing the resort in first position in the ranking of the most popular Alpine holiday destinations, also including those in France, Italy, Germany and Austria. Then come Saint Moritz and the Engadine in second place with 21,200 francs and Zermatt on third place for 19,900 francs. Gstaad and Andermatt follow closely behind them.

The rates “for hotel nights have had a similar evolution,” notes the economist specializing in real estate Thomas Veraguth by videoconference. “Complete hotels in high season support the values ​​of vacation accommodation and encourage people to pay for their own accommodation in order to enjoy it at any time.”

The rental of accommodation for commercial purposes has also benefited, according to the expert who estimates that one in ten second homes – in the destinations analyzed – is offered on an online platform such as Airbnb.

Frozen Market

Despite the appeal of these Alpine second homes and a 30% increase in their price since 2019, UBS real estate analyst and lead author of the study Maciej Skoczek expects “stagnation in the market this year”.

Transforming primary residences into secondary residences could be an alternative, because “a home subject to the old law can be sold at a higher price of around 20% if it is instead put on the market as a secondary residence”.

Concerning the strong real estate demand in recent years, offers however remain low in 2024, according to the expert who notes a normalization of demand coming from abroad in particular. Also, hardly expect any impetus from the construction sector, the report warns.

However, with sufficient capital and income, “baby boomers could support demand in mountain regions for a few more years.”

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