European non-listed real estate funds last year delivered their best performance since 2006, according to INREV.

The industry body’s annual index recorded a 9.7% return, the highest since before the financial crisis and up from 8% in 2014, according to INREV’s latest Annual Index.

Overall returns were boosted by the performance of value-added funds, which rose to 14.2%.

Core funds also registered an improved return of 9%.

Closed-end (10.7%) funds slightly outperformed open-ended funds (9.3%).

Henri Vuong, INREV’s director of research and market information, said European non-listed real estate had recovered well following the financial crisis.

“Our latest index shows the industry is in good health,” she said: “It’s particularly encouraging to see positive returns weren’t limited to just the biggest markets – in fact, all the fund types we tracked were in the plus column last year.”

INREV said the UK topped the performance list of country-specific funds, although the overall return was down to 12% from 16.7% in 2014.

“There has been a lot of speculation recently about where we are in the cycle,” Vuong said.

“Although the overall return for 2015 was the highest in nine years, the 2006 peak was closer to double this figure.

“We are unlikely to see a similar high point in the medium term, suggesting lessons have been learned and the industry’s long-term trajectory is more sustainable.”

Dutch funds climbed into second place following a significant improvement from the 3.4% recorded last year to 9.6%.

French funds followed in third with 8.8%, and German funds were fourth with 7.4%.

Finnish (up from -1.1% in 2014 to 7.2% in 2015), Nordic (from 3.9% to 10.6%), Southern European (from -1.1% to 6%) and Italian funds (from -5.2% to 2.2%) were among the other top improvers.

Single-sector strategies saw good returns, the best of which was achieved by industrial and logistics funds, at 15.9%.

Office returned 10.1%, retail 10% and residential 9.7%.