In H2’19-H1’20 purchases in the high-class apartment segment in Vilnius totalled nearly EUR 100 million
The fourth continuous analysis of the most expensive apartments carried out by Ober-Haus shows that sales of such apartments in the capital city have reached new record highs. The analysis covered the H2 2019 – H1 2020 period. All apartment transactions where the purchase price per square meter exceeded EUR 3,000 (excluding the price of parking spaces, storage rooms and other appurtenances) registered in Vilnius in this period were selected and analysed (source: State Enterprise Centre of Registers).
The obtained results of the analysis show a further rapid increase in the number of transactions and its value in this segment in Vilnius. According to Ober-Haus, in H2 2019, 149 apartments (over 3,000 EUR/sqm) were purchased for a total of EUR 39.2 million (including appurtenances). This is a significantly better result than that in H2 2018 or H1 2019, where 88 and 125 apartments were purchased respectively. In H1 2020, 218 such apartments were purchased, which is the highest recorded number since H1 2016 (when the analysis of the high-class apartment segment was launched). According to Ober-Haus, the value of the purchases totalled EUR 58.4 million, which is also the largest amount spent in this segment in six months in the capital city.
“The share of the high-class apartment transactions in the overall apartment sales statistics in Vilnius continues to increase,” Raimondas Reginis, Research Manager for the Baltics at Ober-Haus, said. In 2018, the share of such transactions was 1.7%, in 2019 – 2.3%, and in H1 2020 it peaked at 4.1%.
“However, when assessing these figures, it should be borne in mind that a significant overall decrease in the number of transactions for apartments was recorded in Vilnius during the pandemic lockdown. In the meantime, the share of newly built apartments increased significantly. Just within H1 2020, a large number of transactions for newly built apartments, which actually were agreed to purchase in the previous years, were registered. Given that a large portion of the most expensive apartments under analysis were sold in newly completed projects, this inertia concerning the transactions for newly built apartments led to a sharp rise in their share in the total apartment transactions,” Reginis added. Preliminary estimates suggest that if the overall activity of the apartment market were to remain at the same level as at the beginning of 2020 (before the start of the lockdown), the share of the most expensive apartments in the total transaction number would have been 3.4–3.6% rather than 4.1%. In general terms, the implementation of new ambitious projects in the most prestigious parts of the city in recent years has essentially programmed this increase.
The analysis of the transactions for the most expensive apartments recorded in the last two half years shows that in very few cases the price per square meter reached the EUR 6,000.
In terms of price per square meter, the most expensive apartment was sold in the Misionierių Sodai project on Subačiaus Street in Vilnius Old Town in H1 2020 in Vilnius. The apartment of almost 120 sqm with parking spaces sold for EUR 770,000 (nearly 6,100 EUR/sqm).
In H2 2019, the most expensive apartment was sold in the Šaltinių Namai | Attico project on Aguonų Street in Vilnius Old Town. The apartment of over 100 sqm with several parking places and a storage room sold for over EUR 670,000 (nearly 6,000 EUR/sqm, excluding the price of parking places and the storage room).
However, during the period under consideration, one apartment sale stood out for its price. In H2 2019, a nearly 340 sqm apartment with several parking spaces in the Pliaterių Rūmai project (completed in 2017) on Bokšto Street in Vilnius Old Town sold at over EUR 1.9 million. “Among the transactions for the most expensive apartments, this was the most expensive apartment sold in 2019 not only in the capital city, but also in Lithuania,” Reginis said.
According to Ober-Haus, in terms of the share per price per square meter in the segment of high-end apartments sold in Vilnius, in H2 2019 and H1 2020, the share of apartments that sold at 3,000–4,000 EUR/sqm amounted to 84%, 4,000–5,000 EUR/sqm – 14%, and over 5,000 EUR/sqm – 2%.
According to Reginis, like in previous years, the largest portion of the most expensive apartments is sold in the areas of the Old Town and Naujamiestis in Vilnius. “The central part of the city, the Old Town, and the area of Užupis are not only rich with historical buildings, but also with the record number of newly developed residential projects. The transactions for apartments in the southern part of Šnipiškės and Žirmūnai districts or Žvėrynas district in Vilnius increasingly supplement the statistics for the most expensive transactions. Residential projects developed in these urban areas get attention of buyers who pay up to 4,000–4,500 EUR/sqm for an exceptional apartment,” the representative of Ober-Haus noted.
According to Ober-Haus, out of the 367 most expensive apartments sold in Vilnius in H2 2019 and H1 2020, 62% of them were in newly developed residential projects (in the apartment buildings built in 2018–2020). Looking at specific most recent residential projects in Vilnius in the period in question, the most expensive apartments (by price per sqm) were sold in the following projects: Paupys (Aukštaičių Street), Šaltinių Namai | Attico (Aguonų Street), Sierakausko 25 (Z. Sierakausko Street), and Misionierių Sodai (Subačiaus Street).
The rapidly increasing sales of the most expensive apartments and the record highs call for the question: what are the limits of the country’s capital city’s housing market? “The developing real estate market in Vilnius is being tested each year with an increasing number of upper-class residential projects which the market proves to be able to absorb. Even the most active 2006–2008 period of the development of apartment buildings in Vilnius cannot be compared to the development volumes in the most valuable and expensive areas of the city in recent years. If our economy is able to avoid greater losses in the near future, the prestigious housing market may again try to set new limits for its potential. The developers in this segment have determination and continue to compete for the remaining most valuable untapped spots in the city,” Reginis said.