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International Health Insurance News: Eurozone property 'is risky investment'

Although international medical insurance can be an essential investment when relocating abroad to European countries, real estate might not be.

Buy-to-let specialists Assetz have claimed property values in many eurozone nations have an unacceptable level of risk, highlighting Spain, Portugal and Italy as some of these locations.

Although expatriates may be able to find accommodation in these places that is 50 per cent cheaper than it was at the start of the global economic downturn, people ought to wait until the sovereign debt crisis in Greece is resolved before they purchase any of these assets, the company recommended.

If weaker economies left the euro and began to operate with a national currency, the portfolio held by foreign property investors could be significantly devalued, the company warned.

Assetz chief executive Stuart Law argued: "Things are likely to get worse before they get better."

This is due to a combination of poor growth projections, the persistence of the economic downturn and a "weak performance from EU authorities and governments", he remarked.

However, more desirable districts, such as Paris and the Cote d'Azur, could still experience strong demand, the expert pointed out.

"The majority of investors would do well to sit tight until the situation becomes clearer, or concentrate on safer countries with less exposure to a partial eurozone breakup," Mr Law advised.

PrimeLocation.com has revealed the number of individuals considering purchasing property in European countries dropped during the final quarter of 2011.

The number of searches for Spanish and Italian real estate declined by 15 per cent over this period, with interest in Cypriot buildings experiencing a 14 per cent fall.

However, non-European destinations saw a significant growth in searches, with the number of people looking for property in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) growing by 47 per cent during this timeframe.

"The UAE enjoy low rates of taxation, a stable and wealthy economy and an attractive property market," PrimeLocation.com property analyst Nigel Lewis declared.

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