December, typically a quiet month in the property market in Tel Aviv, was one of the busiest of 2012, with a significant amount of movement amongst foreign resident buyers in the city and the exclusive suburb of Herzliya.Despite a number of articles published over the past few weeks pointing to the contrary, Operation Pillar of Defense, the global financial situation, and the elections of last week were not factors that drove foreign residents away from Israel, but rather were none factors. Foreign buyers who came to Tel Aviv over the Christmas and New Year’s vacations were primarily motivated by their desire to own second homes in Israel and the sustained belief in the health of the local property market.
Demand for luxury real estate in Tel Aviv has been hot over the past month, with a number of deals being concluded in excess of 10M NIS in the popular Meier on Rothschild and Ritz-Carlton Herzliya projects, both of which are slated to be completed in the coming year. A 395 square meter, 3 bedroom unit was sold in Richard Meier’s project to a family from the United Kingdom for 21 Million NIS, and a 110 square meter, 2 bedroom unit in the Ritz-Carlton for 11.6 Million NIS was picked up by a Swiss family, signaling a continued trend in the demand for up-scale properties in Tel Aviv’s most prestigious addresses.
A number of new projects have begun to break ground throughout Tel Aviv over the past month as well, with demand remaining steady, despite the end of the holiday season. Until the Passover season begins, deal volume can be expected to remain stable, with demand again expected to spike during the next big “rush” of foreign buyers during the warmer summer months. All in all, 2013 is off to a good start for the Israeli real estate market.