Romania has 96 percent home ownership rate, the highest in the world

Ioana Erdei 25/12/2018 | 22:50

Romania touts the highest rates of home ownership in world. According to Eurostat data, quoted by the British real-estate agency Property Rescue, 96 percent of Romanians live in owner-occupied dwellings.

The second place is  occupied by Singapore, where 90.8 percent of locals own their house. The third country is Slovakia, where 90.3 percent of citizens are home owners.  The Top 10 is dominated by countries from CEE.

In 1990, at the end of Romanian communist rule, the state owned 70% of apartments. The government began to sell these properties and people rushed to buy the homes they were living in – often at very advantageous prices. Romania’s devalued currency, paired with growing inflation, made purchasing easy.

Even as the global landscape evolves, Romania remains a country of homeowners. According to a report completed by the World Bank and Romania Regional Development Program, a “virtually absent rental market” contributes directly to overcrowding as multiple generations or extended families live together – even as families expand.

The report also indicates that more than a third of Romania’s housing is also in disrepair, with structural issues, heating problems, and little protection against earthquakes (Romania’s risk is the highest in Europe). Among the reasons for the lack of repairs, many owners cannot afford them.

Romania established the First Home programme in 2009 on the back of the global economic downturn to help would-be homeowners afford their first property.

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