The 2023 annual apartment price increase stood at 1.7% and the average annual price increase – at 8.2%

2024-01-15

The Ober-Haus Apartment Price Index (OHBI) in Lithuania, which records changes in apartment prices in five major Lithuanian cities (Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda, Šiauliai and Panevėžys), increased by 0.5% in December 2023. Overall, the apartment prices in the major cities of Lithuania have increased by 1.7% over the last 12 months. The average annual apartment price increase in 2023 (January-December year-on-year) stood at 8.2%.

In December 2023, apartment sales prices in Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda and Panevėžys increased by 0.4%, 0.6%, 0.8% and 0.8% respectively and the average price per square meter in these cities was EUR 2,575 (+11 EUR/sqm), EUR 1,736 (+10  EUR/sqm), EUR 1,640 (+13 EUR/sqm), and EUR 1,081 (+8 EUR/sqm). In Šiauliai, apartment sales prices decreased by 0.7% and the average price per square meter was EUR 1,098 Eur (-8 EUR/sqm).

Apartment prices rose year-on-year in December 2023 in all major cities of the country: 1.1% – in Vilnius, 2.7% – in Kaunas, 2.4% – in Klaipėda, 2.4% – in Šiauliai and 2.0% – in Panevėžys

“Despite the decrease in the number of sales transactions in the Lithuanian housing market by 14% for two consecutive years, the country avoided a decline in the sale prices in 2023. In the course of the year, only minor positive or negative monthly changes in the sales prices of apartments were recorded, resulting in a symbolic overall annual price increase of 1.7%. The last time even lower annual price increase was recorded in the country’s major cities was ten years ago, in December 2013, and stood at 1.1%. Since apartment sales prices remained record high throughout the year, the average annual change in 2023 remained quite solid – at 8.2%. Looking at the results of the last decade, a faster average annual growth of apartment prices in the country’s major cities was recorded only in 2021 (14.2%) and 2022 (21.5%). Overall, the sales price curve for apartments in 2023 coincided with the national inflation rates and almost replicated the changes in prices of other consumer goods and services.

Looking at individual cities or housing segments in the country, the overall trends in price changes during the year were almost identical. A rapid slowdown in price growth was recorded across all major cities and housing segments. Despite the low activity of the primary apartment market and the discounts and various gifts offered by developers, the prices for newly build apartments in 2023 increased slightly more than the prices of older apartments, an increase of 3.2% and 0.7% respectively.

Even the subdued mood and the noticeable drop in activity on the property market did not force the majority of the sellers to actually reduce their prices and as the year progressed housing market participants essentially moved into the waiting mode. Potential buyers were waiting for a clearer geopolitical situation, lower mortgage rates or lower house prices, while sellers expected buyers to return to the market in the future and waited patiently for them. Meanwhile, housing developers were as active as ever in promoting their properties and offering various benefits to buyers, and reduced the volume of new developments. If there is a turnaround in the market expected by sellers and buyers in 2024 and buyers return to the market, a negative annual change in house prices is likely to be avoided. However, taking into account all the existing global or local challenges, it is possible that the recovery of the housing market will not necessarily be sudden and it will take longer than expected for the buyers’ willingness and capacity to buy homes to recover,” says Raimondas Reginis, Head of Market Research for the Baltics, Ober-Haus.

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