Emerging Trends in Real Estate to Prepare for Now

GCCReal Estate

The real estate market is changing consistently and can be a big factor in investment decisions. Learn more about emerging trends in real estate to prepare for now.

During global economic slowdowns, property presents a compelling investment proposition. However, businesses and retail investors who want to lock in capital values should consider the top emerging trends in real estate before buying. Factoring in as many real estate trends as possible will ensure optimal benefit when the time come to cash in. Countries such as Bahrain, with a stable political system, growing population and enduring appeal for business, tick off several boxes here.

The real estate market in 2020 will suffer due to the immediate effects of the COVID-19 outbreak. However, global trade and oil demand are already picking up. The economy will soon bounce back, BMI Research forecasts. These green shoots are evident in Bahrain. Emerging trends in real estate already indicate the way forward. The Kingdom’s retail segment is in a bright spot, with a good development pipeline and strong investor interest. Prospects for the industrial sector remain positive thanks to Bahrain’s attractiveness for international business, as well as a strong infrastructure project pipeline. Government support for business and the expanding financial technology entrepreneurship ecosystem will also spur growth going forward,

This article lists the key emerging trends in real estate for 2020 and beyond. The current trends in real estate include:

  • Buying instead of renting
  • Markets with consistent demand
  • The appeal of communities
  • Why safe havens are attractive
  • The emerging role of Proptech

Right now, consumer appetites in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak remain uncertain. However, the following emerging real estate trends appear poised to pay handsome returns in the future.

When renters become buyers

Economic downturns traditionally present the opportunity for first-time buyers to get on the property ladder. At such times, prices become more approachable for residential and commercial property alike. Emerging real estate trends show that property prices across the Middle East declined in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Alongside, renters have had limited relief from landlords – particularly in terms of commercial property. Research shows that over the long term, buying a home is cheaper than renting. In multidimensional urban marketplaces such as Bahrain, which enables investment across a diverse range of properties, there is no shortage of choice.

Consistent outlook for residential units

This is particularly true of the Middle East and North Africa, one of the world’s youngest regions with a median age of 26.8 years. It is currently home to 600 million people. Forecasts expect the region’s population to surpass China by 2100. The effect will be pronounced in the Gulf, thanks to its strong family values, high human development scores and significant disposable incomes. Accordingly, the resilient demand over the past few decades looks set to continue.

A community state of mind

Real estate buyers everywhere value community dynamics. Housing buyers like to tick off factors such as nearby schools, offices and shopping and recreation areas. The live/work/play dynamic has remained one of the more enduring real estate trends even during the coronavirus outbreak; people everywhere have witnessed the valuable benefits of family time. New urban areas across the Middle East cater to this demand with planned integration. Such communities include the island development of Diyar Al Muharraq, Dilmunia and Marassi, which is one of the most exciting beach front development projects currently underway in Bahrain. In other words, this is trend likely to be reflected in real estate development for the foreseeable future, with community and family taking on a new importance in the face of quarantine and isolation.

In uncertain and challenging times, emerging trends in real estate show that investors focus on asset protection, even as capital appreciation remains essential. The Gulf’s land and property markets represent safe havens for investor capital at such times. Bahrain’s real estate sector is a long-standing and increasingly popular option for investment preservation and wealth accumulation. Unlike more glamorous options nearby, real estate trends in Bahrain have remained resilient in the face of successive macroeconomic challenges. Further, international buyers remain welcome, with authorities recently dismissing proposals to restrict foreign ownership.

Proptech’s role in emerging real estate trends

As with every other economic sector, technology is also shaping real estate trends. Correspondingly, the industry has embraced property technology (Proptech) rapidly and is expected to continue doing so as competition intensifies, PWC says in the Emerging Trends in Real Estate report. In construction, that means artificial intelligence and robotics. The change also covers buying property, where digitization is driving the sector forward. In Bahrain, virtual viewings and online payments are now normal, making the Kingdom a leading destination for Proptech. For example, the Estater app serves as a platform to list, share, find and manage a property. Likewise, widespread digital transformation means that land registration, permit applications and requests for electricity and water links can be done online in a paperless manner. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is impacting sectors and industries across the board, and real estate is no exception. But as the sector evolves in line with the near unprecedented technological advancements currently sweeping the globe, the opportunities for investors are evolving in tandem.

In conclusion, as with other sectors, it is unlikely that Real Estate will ever completely return to how it was pre-pandemic. However, the emerging trends outlined in this article suggest that the future will bring a more efficient, community-driven and technologically advanced property market. Moreover, for those savvy and adaptable property buyers, it presents new investment pathways that will continue into 2020 and beyond.



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