November 29, 2023

Taylor Daily Press

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8 out of 10 Belgians now think it's too expensive to buy a house, and contractors report canceling existing projects due to price hikes

8 out of 10 Belgians now think it’s too expensive to buy a house, and contractors report canceling existing projects due to price hikes


84 percent of Belgians think that buying a home is currently too expensive. The cost of construction and renovation is also prohibitive for many Belgians, according to an iVox survey conducted at the beginning of Batebou. Meanwhile, the sector is also seeing a drop in the number of contracts due to higher material prices, the Construction Association reports.

The survey reveals a number of (re)constructive tendencies of the Belgian. For example, 84% think it is too expensive to buy now, and half of Belgians (53%) don’t think the time is right to build or renovate.

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However, a lot of Belgians are working on it, according to the survey. Nearly 4 in 10 Belgians (37%) are currently building, renovating, building or renovating in the past two years or are planning to do so in the next year. The vast majority of Belgians say that when they think of renovation or construction projects, the first thing they think of is the energy efficiency of the home. 63% would prefer a more expensive home that is sustainable and energy efficient to a cheaper, less energy efficient home. But the reality shows a more accurate picture. For Belgians who are actively building or renovating, the price usually comes first (38%).

At the same time, the Construction Association reported that these high prices also affect the number of contracts in this sector. The consortium’s research, which involved 325 contractors and installers, shows that 61 percent reported a decrease in the number of new contacts. In 13 percent of cases, the client cancels their construction or renovation project. The reason: the high prices of materials and the resulting construction prices.

© Hollandse Hoogte / Tom van Limpt

“However, builders can do nothing but bill the increased rates to the client,” says Nico Demeester, managing director of the Building Consortium. The quotations they receive from building materials suppliers are valid only for a few days in 43 percent of cases and up to only a few hours in 7 percent of cases.

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“It shows that the price pressure is very high and that contractors and installers have no other option to pass on these price increases to customers,” Demeester stresses. Research shows that with new contracts, overpricing passes in 65 percent of cases, of which 40 percent are fully and 25 percent partially.

Demeester adds that these increased prices are bad news for consumers. However, they should not prevent it from starting or continuing a new building or renovation project. After all, the best form of retirement savings continues to be investing in your home.