The impacts of the war between Russia and Ukraine were still marginal in the real estate market in February, although after February 24th, the situation has drastically changed. As the situation is unpredictable, largely depending on the course of the war, various scenarios are possible.
The market of developments shows that the rapid increase of the input prices due to sanctions has forced real estate developers as well as people building their own houses to take some time out. As for ordinary people, the changed security situation and the double-digit inflation has reduced their feeling of security, and consequently, we will see a drop in the activity for some time. In the lease market, however, the movement has been just the opposite – an increase in demand can be expected, which in a while may be expected to result in a price increase. To sum up: the situation is unclear, so the best suggestion would be to take some time out and keep from doing transactions based on strong emotions.
1,816 transactions were concluded in the Estonian apartment market in February, which was about twenty less than in January and nearly a hundred less than during the same period last year. In the first two months of the year, 1.4% transactions less were concluded than during the same period last year, whereas the median price of transactions has increased by nearly 20% when comparing the periods. In February, the median price of transactions was over 1,800 €/m2 (1,878 €/m2 to be exact) for the third consecutive month, whereas the median price one year ago was 1,536 €/m2.
Based on the first two months, a larger increase in the number of transactions has been seen in Põlva County (+43%) and Jõgeva County (+28%), whereas in more densely populated counties like Harju County, Pärnu County and Tartu County, the number of transactions has been lower than during the same period last year. The only exception is Ida-Viru County where 6% more transactions were concluded. Not only the apartment market but also the market of immovables has calmed down. In February, 183 transactions were concluded with houses (228 last year), 44 transactions with summer houses (46) and 241 transactions with plots of residential land (374).
Apartment market in Tallinn
In Tallinn, the number of transactions concluded in February was 713, which was 2 more than in January, whereas the number of transactions concluded was 70 less than during the same period last year. In the first two months of the year, 8% fewer transactions were concluded in comparison to the same period last year; the drop has been caused by the market of new developments (-45%), whereas 7% more transactions were concluded in the secondary market.
For the first time, the median price of transactions rose above 2,500 €/m2, which was 20% higher than last year. Even though calmer times are expected to come in the economy, the rapid price increase and low offering predict a continued environment of price increase.
Apartment market in Tartu
In February, 158 transactions were concluded in Tartu, which was the lowest result of the past 12 months. In comparison to last year, the number of transactions dropped regardless of the increase in the sales of new developments by 8; in the first two months of the year, the number of transactions has dropped by 9%, and the drop has been caused by the secondary market. A drop in the number of transactions was also predictable in the pre-war situation, as when the offering becomes lower, the number of transactions inevitably drops with a constantly high demand. The median price broke a new record in Tartu – the figure in February was 1,952 €/m2, a year ago, median price was 9% lower.
Apartment market in Pärnu
In Pärnu, only 53 transactions were concluded in February, of which 10 were transactions with new developments. In comparison to the same period last year, the number of transactions dropped by nearly 20, and not just due to the small drop in the volume of new developments. As a result of low offering and rapid price increase, the median price of transactions increased to a new record-breaking level. In February, the median price was 1,717 €/m2, and in the first two months of the year, the median price has increased by 34% (1,250 €/m2→1,674 €/m2). The number of transactions during the same period has dropped by 19%.
Apartment market in Narva
In Narva, 82 transactions were concluded in February, which was 16 transactions more than a year ago. When comparing years, the median price was also slightly higher – 435 €/m2. Due to a several times lower offering and a changed situation, it is difficult to see any increase in the number of transactions in the near future.