New state rules meant to cool down a hot real estate market and reduce conflicts after homes change hands instead sent housing prices to record levels in January. They rose 4.8 percent, because there were fewer homes on the market while demand remained high.
At least part of the reason for the reduced supply of homes up for sale are the new rules that took effect January 1. Sellers are now required to supply much more detailed information about the condition of their property, document all remodeling work performed and identify the companies or building trades workers who did the work. It’s no longer possible to sell a property “as is.”
That’s forced sellers to do lots more research themselves, assemble documents and fill out forms in the hopes of receiving the highest grades possible for the physical condition and history of their homes. Many people hoping to sell homes in January needed more time, resulting a 22 percent decline in sales last month.
Consumer organizations, real estate brokers and property appraisers have welcomed the tougher rules, however, which put more responsibility on sellers and lead to safer homebuying for purchasers. “This is the most important change in real estate law for many years, and creates a more secure market,” Carl O Geving, leader of the Norwegian real estate brokers’ association, told newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN).