Global Housing Market: Issues For Relocations

A common ingredient of all international relocations is finding somewhere for assignees (and often their families) to live.


There are, however, global trends affecting the affordability and availability of housing. These have directly impacted assignees’ choices and created a demand for more specialist, detailed home searches.

Oxford Economics research consultancy predicts that most countries are expected to experience a slowdown in their housing markets during 2023.  

Four Issues Affecting Global Housing

1. Interest Rates

During 2021, housing prices rose in 41 countries. This growth was created by low interest rates for borrowing and the healthy savings of many house buyers. (Oxford Economics) In under 12 months, the situation has changed dramatically. Many people have found the increase in interest rates unaffordable, slowing the housing market considerably.

2. Housing Costs

Housing prices and associated costs are rising fast – more quickly than incomes. The global cost of living crisis exacerbates this situation.

3. Inflation

The combination of rising costs and interest rates has created high inflation in many countries. This means that real-term wages are falling.

4. Low Housing Stock

With the slowing of the housing markets and rising costs of property ownership, a growing number of landlords have exited the rental market. Availability is further reduced if assignees are relocating with their pet. During the pandemic, 78% of pet owners acquired a pet (Forbes). Pet ownership grew significantly during the pandemic however only 7% of landlords accept pets (Housing Hand).

International Relocations

This combination of factors means that specialist support in home search is hugely important. Most assignees are looking for rental accommodation whilst many host countries have a decreasing rental housing stock.

The BTR team excels at finding the right rental property for each assignee, even in challenging markets. Our global network of partners has specialist contacts with expert local knowledge of the housing market in host countries. Home search assistance looks at all the options, from temporary to short term and long term rental accommodation.

“On several occasions, we’ve been shocked by the lack of rental properties available to assignees,” says Sarah Huntridge of BTR International. “Most recently, this has happened in Germany and Scotland however it seems to be a global issue. A growing number of assignees want to relocate with the family pet. Finding pet-friendly properties has become increasingly difficult.

“This is where our tenacity, contacts and attention to detail are extremely helpful. We always find a suitable property for each assignee – it’s great to see our hard work find ideal homes for assignees.”

Are your employees moving overseas for work?

Do you need support in finding suitable accommodation for them?  

Talk to the friendly team at BTR International. We’ll discuss location, budget and requirements and chat through the options.

Similar resources

Dive deeper