What type of housing is most popular?
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Which flats are now selling fastest in new developments? Which projects are the most popular? Why? In which cities is demand the highest? To what extent are investors buying to let responsible for the record high sales? A survey was conducted by the real estate service dompress.pl.
Andrzej Oślizło, president of Develia S.A.
Invariably, the best sellers are flats from the popular segment, two-room flats with an area of about 40 sqm. Traditionally, the demand is also high for studio flats, especially those located in the vicinity of universities and office districts or in areas well connected with them. The share of individual investors buying flats with a view to renting varies depending on the city, location and standard of the investment. Over the past two quarters, however, we have actually observed more purchases made for investment purposes.
According to the National Bank of Poland, Poles have a total of nearly one trillion zlotys in deposits, savings and current accounts. In the face of record low interest rates and rising inflation, they want to protect their savings against loss of value. Residential real estate, whose prices in recent years have risen, depending on the location, from 9% to even 12% per year, is very well suited for this purpose. If all the savings of Poles were invested in flats, nearly 2 million units could be bought for them.
Zbigniew Juroszek, CEO of Atal
Although the scale of residential construction is growing and the industry records high sales results, the hunger for housing remains a permanent element. Hence, the high demand, created mainly by customers buying property for their own residential purposes. Investment buyers, however, have a significant influence on the situation on the primary real estate market.
High demand is observed in all seven markets where we operate, and increased interest of customers concerns basically all investments available for sale. Invariably, the greatest potential has flats located in city centres or with easy access to city centres. Customers are willing to pay more for such flats.
Nevertheless, the popularity of projects located in the suburbs, especially if they are close to green and recreational areas, has significantly increased recently. Families with children are mainly interested in such locations. A trend that is gaining momentum is the purchase of more spacious flats. This is related to the growing aspirations of the population and the desire to improve housing conditions. This trend is also confirmed by the growing demand for the largest flats and flats of over 100 sq.m. in high-standard developments. Moreover, the market share of customers who are interested mainly in smaller areas and compact layouts remains high.
Michał Witkowski, Sales Director at Lokum Deweloper S.A.
Customers made a variety of choices. The level of interest in an investment is affected by a number of factors, including location, advancement of construction and the size of the offer. Exactly these conditions determined that all the projects met the scale of enquiries and sales we had forecast.
In Wrocław, the Lokum Porto development in the Old Town enjoyed a surge of interest in January, which was maintained in subsequent months. With the arrival of warmer days, buyers’ attention was attracted by projects located slightly further from the centre: Lokum Verde in Zakrzów in Wrocław and Lokum Monte in Sobótka near Wrocław. In Cracow, the demand for flats in all our projects – Lokum Vista in Podgórze Duchackie, Lokum Siesta in Dębniki and Lokum Salsa in Zabłocie – was equally high, probably due to the advancement of the construction works and attractive flats that will soon be ready for pick-up.
The profile of our customers is diverse, also in terms of buyers for their own use or as investors. Investors show interest in our projects located near the city centre, because they are easier to rent, as tenants more often look for flats in such attractive locations. On the other hand, if we look at housing estates located on the outskirts or outside the city, we see a larger share of clients buying apartments for themselves. There, too, we find investors responding to the growing interest in the possibility of acquiring more space at a lower price than in city centres.
Adrian Potoczek, Sales and Marketing Director at Wawel Service
The developers’ record sales results surprised everyone this year. The fastest-selling flats were those with an area of about 45 square metres, which were chosen by young couples, singles and investors planning an investment purchase. Definitely the most popular was the several-stage investment Piasta Park. The estate is located near green areas, perfectly developed, and in the vicinity customers will find shops, kindergartens, parks and recreational areas. It is a place for those seeking tranquility and greenery in close proximity to the city centre.
Lublańska Park and Lema investments in Kraków also enjoyed great interest. These are locations closer to the centre, with excellent communication and quality of construction. These investments were often chosen by investors who wanted to invest their money safely. Both in Krakow and in Katowice, interest in buying flats is very high and we will observe whether this trend will continue.
Małgorzata Ostrowska, Director of Marketing and Sales Division in J.W. Construction Holding S.A.
All flats, from small ones to 93 square meter flats in the Horizon Housing Estate project in Gdańsk, where pre-sales began in January this year, are selling fast. This investment is very popular due to its location in the seaside belt, green recreational terraces on the roofs of the buildings and interesting architecture. Our clients are both investors and people looking for their dream M. Investors most often choose one- and two-room flats, while people who buy premises to satisfy their own needs opt for three- and four-room flats.
Zuzanna Należyta, Commercial Director at Eco Classic
Sales trends in our investments are in line with market trends. Two-room flats with an area of more than 40 square metres continue to be the most popular, which is additionally strengthened by the demand for theses and increased interest in purchases on the part of investment funds. We have also noticed an increased interest in three- and four-room flats compared to the pre-pandemic period.
Janusz Miller, Sales and Marketing Director at Home Invest
We execute our investments exclusively in Warsaw. The first quarter of this year proved to be record-breaking in terms of flat sales in the history of our development activity. Practically all our investments enjoyed great interest from customers. We are building in very good locations in Warsaw, perfectly communicated with the centre, near underground stations, which generated demand from clients looking for flats for themselves, as well as from investors who want to invest capital in premises for rent. We sold the largest number of two- and three-room flats.
Cezary Grabowski, Sales and Marketing Director at Bouygues Immobilier Polska
The demand for flats has recovered and is currently at a high level. At the beginning of this year, we recorded high sales results in each category of flats. If we look at individual categories, the biggest increases have been recorded in the group of three- and four-room flats. The pandemic has contributed to the increased interest in them. Customers are asking for larger floor areas in a given type of flat. In response to their new needs, we design three-room flats above 80 sqm or four-room flats above 100 sqm. Before the pandemic, such layouts were sought in smaller areas.
Smaller flats are invariably very popular. The demand for them is reported mainly by investors, encouraged by the perspective of higher profits in comparison with practically interest-free bank deposits. For them, investing in a flat is still a profitable and safe method of investing their savings. Smaller flats are also willingly bought for their own needs. As they attract the interest of more customers, they are the first to be sold.
Mariola Żak, Sales and Marketing Director of Aurec Home
We have had tremendous success with Tomorrowland. On average, we sold 20 flats a month. This is a record pace. Therefore, with optimism, we started the construction of the second stage of the project, in which we offer 140 two-, three- and four-room flats.
Investment clients are definitely most interested in projects located in the centres of large cities, while clients thinking of flats for themselves tend to choose areas on the outskirts. Our offer combines the expectations of both, focusing on districts with excellent transport connections to the centre of Warsaw – Ursus and Włochy.
Beata Cywińska, Vice-President of the Management Board of Waryński S.A. Holding Group
In line with our expectations, in the first quarter of this year we recorded high sales in the completed investment ATOL in Gdańsk. We sold the majority of flats from the 1st to the 3rd floor at the price of ca. PLN 10,000 gross per square metre. The main interest was in units of about 60 sq m, some with the possibility of separating a third room. The 3-4 room flats were less popular. In uncertain times, real estate will always be a safe alternative for investing money and making long-term profits.
Edyta Kołodziej, Sales and Marketing Director at Nickel Development
The good sales results we have recorded confirm a trend which is favourable for developers. The product diversity, which we have maintained for years, allows us to respond quickly to the market’s needs. Two-room flats have sold out the fastest from our offer. Interest in them was high, both among investment clients and individuals. In the ST_ART Piątkowo investment in Poznań, they accounted for more than 50 percent of the offer, and today there are barely a few left. Most of them were purchased by investors with a view to renting them out or securing them against loss of value.
Osiedle Księżnej Dąbrówki near Poznań is a multi-stage investment which is very popular among families and where the fastest to find buyers were large, three- and four-room, comfortable flats with gardens; moreover, the entire stage sold out in record time. Good results were also recorded for the Koło Brzegu Apartments. Although the second home model was a niche trend at the time of its introduction, it has gained popularity, which is reflected in the large share of individual buyers among our clients in this property.
Andrzej Gutowski, Vice-President of Ronson Development
We have a very balanced portfolio of investments and projects which are popular among our clients, regardless of the city. There is no single dominant bestseller, but we see some new trends in terms of customer needs. Above all, customers today do not just buy a flat, but a whole package of so-called added values that creates a self-sufficient housing estate. Over the years, our mission has been to create space that locally meets the needs of future residents. The answer to this are, among others, such investments as Ursus Centralny and Miasto Moje, currently very popular precisely because of the creation of a number of attractions for residents within their area. In Ursus, a boulevard was created, while in My City a Vistula walkway with a number of attractions, such as playgrounds with trampolines, a relaxation zone or an outdoor gym. A kindergarten and a nursery were also built on the estate.
During the pandemic period, interest in ground floor flats with their own gardens increased. Terraces and balconies have also become important when choosing a flat. Customers are now also looking for larger spaces, with the possibility to set up a place for remote working. This is an obvious effect of the pandemic.
We are also seeing a shift towards eco-investments. There is a growing awareness of the need to care for the climate, the planet and a belief that this must be our collective effort. Therefore, we are planning to launch in the middle of this year a project of ecological houses in Falenty near Warsaw, where we will apply a number of ecological solutions, such as recuperation, the possibility of installing photovoltaic panels and charging stations for electric cars. The advantage of the investment will be compact size of 69-128 sqm, which will allow to buy a house for the total price close to the value of a two-room flat in a good, central location of Warsaw.
Agata Zambrzycka, Sales and Marketing Director at Aria Development
In our investments the most popular are one- and two-room flats from 29 square metres to 43 square metres. The sales level is satisfactory. In comparison with previous years, we have observed a significant increase in the number of private investors investing money in real estate.
Sebastian Barandziak, CEO of Dekpol Deweloper
Definitely the most popular lately are the investments offering premises for rent, with a small area of 30 – 35 sq m in attractive locations in terms of recreation, i.e. in the city centre, near the sea, beach, lake, etc. This is mainly due to the still decreasing interest rates and, consequently, the willingness of clients to invest their savings in real estate, which can be a potential source of income. There is also a great interest in green and recreational areas in the vicinity of a given investment and within its area. As a result, investments in suburban areas, offering the possibility to buy an apartment with a garden are very popular among customers.
The pandemic has also caused many buyers to opt for the so-called second home in seaside investments. As a Tri-City developer, we offer three projects in close proximity to the wide, sandy beaches on the Sobieszewska Island.
Tomasz Czubak, Development Projects Director at Jakon
Two-room flats have invariably been the best-selling flats for years. Customers usually look for well-connected locations. An example of such an investment is the building at Jeleniogórska 4 in Poznań. The demand for flats is high in large urban agglomerations. As far as the purchase of real estate by investors is concerned, we have noted an increase in this segment. However, individual clients who buy flats for their own needs are still a strong group.