Trends in housing markets during the economic crisis and Covid-19 pandemic: Turkish case


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Khurami E. A., Özdemir Sarı Ö. B.

ASIA-PACIFIC JOURNAL OF REGIONAL SCIENCE, vol.6, no.3, pp.1159-1175, 2022 (ESCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 6 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s41685-022-00251-w
  • Journal Name: ASIA-PACIFIC JOURNAL OF REGIONAL SCIENCE
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI)
  • Page Numbers: pp.1159-1175
  • Keywords: Covid-19, Economic crisis, Housing market trends, Housing supply, Demand shift
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes

Abstract

The recent global economic crisis and pandemic have shown that housing markets are highly exposed to the prevailing economic and social circumstances. Relevant literature indicates that housing output and transaction volumes were negatively affected during the Covid-19 pandemic. In contrast, price levels displayed variations under different circumstances shaped by demand shifts. Housing affordability conditions also deteriorated and household budgets were squeezed by the high housing cost burden due to the loss of livelihood and increased time spent at home during lockdowns. In the Turkish case, a severe economic crisis in 2018/19 preceded the Covid-19 pandemic. Housing output, housing prices, and the unemployment rate were much more affected by the economic crisis than by the pandemic. Spatial variation in the changes in the supply level was not homogeneous throughout the country. Lower supply levels were observed in the southern and south-eastern parts of the country and the major employment centres. However, compared to the international tendencies, total demand for housing increased, raising the housing transaction volume to record-high levels. In addition, housing prices during the pandemic skyrocketed, accompanied by increasing inflation rates. Furthermore, a demand shift towards single-family houses was observed, and the price gap between single-family houses and flats has widened since the pandemic began. The investment function of housing became prominent once again for wealthier households during the high inflation periods observed during the pandemic. The major conclusion drawn from this study is that the housing market deepened the existing inequalities in society during the current pandemic.