Real estate prices in Bermuda “remain relatively high” when compared to other regions and “sluggish sales have contributed to dented consumer confidence” in Bermuda’s economy.
Speaking in the House on Friday during his second Budget Statement, Finance Minister Curtis Dickinson told MPs: “No sector has been more resistant to market forces than real estate in Bermuda.
“Prices remain relatively high when compared with what similar purchase prices can buy outside Bermuda and sluggish sales have contributed to dented consumer conﬁdence in the economy.
“There are 81 condominium units on the market today and the average unit takes almost two years to be sold,” he said.
“Land is rare and must be protected for future generations. Strategies to open previously restricted markets must not harm the economic interests and aspirations of Bermudians.
“This is a complex area and it cannot be ignored that seemingly conservative lending practices by banks continue to frustrate potential ﬁrst-time homeowners from entering the market.”
During the new fiscal year that starts on April 1, he said the Government “will advance measures to stimulate the real estate market”.
“Hard-working, young Bermudians and their families must be at the forefront of our policy making in this area along with those Bermudians who have invested in property and wish to see a legitimate return on that investment,” said the Minister.
“Investing in Communities during this past ﬁscal year, this Government has been forced to ﬁnd money for things that did not form part of what we promised the people of Bermuda.
“When the glow of an election victory fades, the cold, harsh light of governance tests our ability to prioritise and often means choosing the unpopular, and at the time misunderstood, in the name of preserving the wider interests of the economy that serves the people.”