The upswing in apartment and house prices in the Czech Republic has spread to the market for cottages and chalets. Indeed, such recreational homes have gone up by an average of 20 percent in the last year, according to a company that monitors property prices.
But those wishing to acquire a new place to relax away from the big cities are now having to spend considerably more than previously.
According to a study quoted by iDnes.cz from market monitors CeMap, who track all kinds of property prices, cottages and chalets have become a full one-fifth more expensive in the last year alone.
The biggest price hikes have been registered in the Vysočina and Zlín regions, where this type of country living has risen in price by almost 40 percent year-on-year. In the Liberec region a cottage will set you back 30 percent more today than it would have 12 months ago.
Among those in the market for cottages are people who have become frustrated by the high cost of apartments and houses in major urban areas, iDnes.cz reported.
Petr Ondrák of CeMap told the news site that buyers were opting to invest in cottages as they cost considerably less than regular houses. In addition, it is possible to take out a mortgage if such a property is occupied year-round, he said.
Goran Andonov of estate agents Maxima Reality said some young people were purchasing cottages in and near the Prague area as their only means of getting on the property ladder.
Martin Fojtík of market analysts Fincentrum Reality said others, such as older people, were upping sticks and moving to the country in response to a downturn in their family finances.
The most expensive cottages offered by estate agents RE/MAX range from CZK 10 million to CZK 14 million, iDnes.cz reported.
The highest number of cottage and chalet sales are registered in Central Bohemia, reflecting the fact many owners are based in Prague and unwilling to drive long distances.
Czechs are no longer willing to spend much time working on their small country residences either, according to a spokesperson for RE/MAX. He told iDnes.cz that whereas in the past people often gradually did up their cottages, today they just want to put their feet up when they get away for the weekend.