Norway’s homes worth more than 'Oil Fund'

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Photo: Maria Schmidt (File)
08:58 CEST+02:00
The value of all homes in Norway is 3.6 trillion kroner ($651 billion), according to new numbers that also show home sellers are getting more than they asked for.

Half of that housing value is said to be in fully detached houses with the remainder in town houses, semi-detached homes and flats. The southern Norwegian municipalities of Oslo, Akershus, Rogaland and Hordaland account for half of all real estate value in the country.

The Statistics Norway study comes with government desperate to stem runaway real estate prices as housing starts to dry up. The state numbers crunchers said their value model for the first time uses real property purchase prices between 2004 and 2010 in an attempt to nail down the true effects of Norway’s inflated realtor’s market.

To arrive at truer values for real estate, researchers focused on actual regional sales and compared with the listed prices on 360,000 home sales. They found homes would finally sell for up to 140 percent of their listed market values during the period surveyed.

Per Jaeger, administrative director of the Norwegian Homebuilders Association, said the high prices turning up in the survey derived from a healthy connection between owning and maintenance. The result is that Norway’s homes are now worth more than the country’s sovereign wealth “Oil Fund”.

“We have built up a large fortune on properties and we have the best-maintained residential mass in the world. We repair and renovate like no others,” Jaeger told The Local.

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Government accountants had in 2009 believed the market price of all Norway’s dwellings combined was just 669 billion kroner, or just 20 percent of the researchers’ figure.

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