Sunday, March 27, 2005

Property gold rush threatens US growth

Property gold rush threatens US growth
By Christopher Swann

graphicTom Kunz, head of Century 21, the largest chain of property agents in the US, recently entered a lottery. The prize on offer is not a cheque the length of a bookcase but rather the chance to bid for an apartment in Hawaii. Even if he wins he may have to camp outside the property to ensure that he beats the crowd of other aspiring homeowners.

Many buyers in California, Hawaii, Nevada and Washington DC have been forced to endure similar indignities. Figures this month showed that surging demand pushed up prices in each of these states by more than 20 per cent in 2004, with Nevada topping the league with a 32 per cent rise.

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