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News Summary: German real estate booms

(AP) - BUYING BOOM: Home prices in Germany's largest cities are booming. Building permits and home ownership rates are climbing fast. And the percentage of foreigners snapping up second homes in Germany is on the rise.

CRISIS FALLOUT: The real estate fervor is a consequence of the European debt crisis. Low interest rates have pushed down homebuyers' costs and inflation fears have driven many to real estate as a safe haven for their savings.

NO BUBBLE: Experts downplay the chances of a real-estate bubble like those seen in the U.S., Ireland or Spain. Borrowing in Germany is more heavily regulated.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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