The number of homes sold in the City of Buenos Aires in July plummeted 38.73% from the same month a year ago, the public notaries association, or “Colegio de Escribanos,” said Monday.
Exactly 4,199 homes were (formally) sold in July, compared with 6,853 a year ago. The total value of of the homes sold was almost 1.2 billion pesos (US $311 million), down from 1.5 billion pesos a year ago.
That puts the value of the average home sold in July at 285,409 pesos (US $74,132). That’s pretty close to the average price of US $72,402 in 2000, when the peso was pegged 1-to-1 to the U.S. dollar.
In other words, average property values have changed little in dollar terms over the past decade. But in peso terms, they’ve shot up 294%.
In order for residents of the city to have been able to keep up with the dramatic peso-based rise in prices, their salaries would had to have risen at a higher rate than inflation every year since 2002, when Argentina devalued its currency and let the peso “float” against the dollar.
But that hasn’t happened. Salaries have risen by a much smaller percentage, meaning that when it comes to buying property, most Porteños are notably worse off now than they were a decade ago.