2017 Demonstrated Slower Growth in Apartment Prices in the Main Cities
The Ober-Haus Lithuanian apartment price index (OHBI), which records changes in apartment prices in the five major Lithuanian cities (Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda, Šiauliai and Panevėžys), remained unchanged in December 2017 (0.2% increase was recorded in November 2017). The annual apartment price growth in the major cities of Lithuania was 3.6% (the annual apartment price growth in November 2017 was 4.0%).
Despite unchanged price index for all major Lithuanian cities, there were recorded different price changes in different cities. In December 2017 apartment price increase was recorded in Kaunas, Šiauliai and Panevėžys, where prices increased respectively by 0.2%, 0.3% and 0.5% and the average price per square meter reaching EUR 1,031 (+2 EUR/sqm), EUR 612 (+2 EUR/sqm) and EUR 576 (+3 EUR/sqm). In Vilnius apartment prices remained stable and were the same as in November 2017 – EUR 1,468. Meanwhile in Klaipėda was recorded 0.2% price decrease with average price per square meter reaching EUR 1,037 (-2 EUR/sqm).
In the past 12 months, the prices of apartments grew in all major cities: 4.8% in Kaunas, 3.6% in Vilnius, 3.1% in Panevėžys, 2.7% in Šiauliai and 2.4% in Klaipėda.
‘Looking at general and individual results it can be stated that 2017 saw moderate growth in housing prices. After the 5.5 % growth in apartment prices in 2016, general growth in apartment prices in 2017 in the main cities of the country slumped to 3.6%.
Nevertheless, the assessment of individual cities’ results shows that trends are already changing. While Vilnius was the leader in house prices between 2010 and 2016, in 2017, the greatest price growth was recorded in Kaunas. In 2016, apartment prices in Kaunas grew by 4.3%, and over 2017, this figure climbed to 4.8% and resulted in the biggest relative change in housing prices among all cities of Lithuania. The days of increasing house prices in Vilnius are finished and we are now seeing rapid increase in the regional area of Lithuania which is undergoing considerable economic growth, lower price levels and also better housing affordability indices compared to Vilnius.
On the other hand, it should be remembered that the faster growth in apartment prices in Kaunas, which was recorded last year, is only a relative dimension. Looking at how much apartment prices in Vilnius and Kaunas grew annually in terms of euros per square meter instead of percentage, in 2017, Vilnius showed an increase of EUR 51 per square meter, meanwhile, in Kaunas this figure was EUR 47’, Saulius Vagonis, Head of Valuation & Analysis Department at Ober-Haus, said.