The egg building and construction sites, Wednesday, Nov. 1, 2017. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)
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It's no surprise that real estate developers in Lebanon face tough times.Marwan Mikhael, head of research at Blominvest Bank, said BDL-subsidized home loans had boosted demand for small, affordable residential units. Seeing this, some developers continued to expand and grow their portfolios thinking this demand would never end. "If this situation continues, [developers] may come to a point where we hand over our [properties] portfolios to the banks and let them handle it!" Chehwane said.He noted that while waiting for market conditions to improve, loans taken out by developers and due to the banks continue to accumulate interest. Byblos Bank's Real Estate Demand Index for the first quarter of 2018 posted a monthly average of 33.2 points, constituting a decline of 26.1 percent from 44.9 points in the fourth quarter of 2017 and a decrease of 23.7 percent from 43.5 points in the first quarter of 2017 .Mikhael said other developers have agreed with banks on a rescheduling of loan repayments when the banks judge the developer to be viable.
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