Safe investments, dynamic growth and great value on returns are prime beneficial offerings of a strong Polish economy
Dubai, January 3rd, 2016: Poland is witnessing growing interest from Middle Eastern buyers to invest in its key residential property market amidst a surging economy. Poland is the largest economy in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and is predicted to join the G-20 list of the largest economies in the world by 2022.
The World Bank's 2015 Doing Business report noted that Poland's ease of doing business ranking improved to 32nd (an all-time high) largely due to the burgeoning property market in major cities such as Warsaw, Lodz and Krakow, which have benefitted from significant new developments that have garnered considerable interest from both Polish and international buyers and investors. One of the key factors driving the Polish property market is the ease of property purchases and ownership for overseas investors. Foreign investors are treated with the same rights and privileges as domestics.
Karol Dzieciol, Partner at REAS, Poland's leading residential market consultant, commented: “Poland has a luxury housing market that has been recently revitalised and, when coupled with the country's strong economic performance, makes luxury property an investment which is growing in popularity. Our research has shown that the Polish market consistently rates among the most attractive in Europe, with 67% considering it ‘very attractive' for investment. Domestic demand is high, with just under 100% absorption of stock on offer in the market. Since July 2014, we have also seen a huge rise in the number of luxury property transactions in Poland, signalling that Poland's luxury housing market is on the up.”
The Polish economy has been boosted by the building of a new port in Gdansk, the easing of electricity tariffs and the provision of new public-sector infrastructure projects supported by an €82.3 billion EU Cohesion Fund. Safe investments, dynamic growth and attractive rental returns are prime beneficial offerings of a strong Polish economy.
In recent years, a key characteristic of the Polish residential market has been a lack of high-quality supply, with only 28% of the current housing stock built after 1989. This has left a shortfall for quality housing, particularly within the luxury sector.
However, the market has now taken notice of this deficiency and new schemes offer unparalleled opportunities for those looking to invest in the Polish residential market.
Recent property developments compare favourably to luxury high-rise residences in cities such as London, Berlin and Paris, where values often soar into the tens (and occasionally hundreds) of millions. The strong economic position of Poland offers attractive returns on investment, which is increasingly evident in the property sector. As the city continues to modernise and grow, the surrounding property and land values steadily increase.
Commenting on the demand for luxury housing in Poland, Alicja Kosciesza, Sales and Marketing Director at Zlota 44, said: “The demand for luxury housing in Poland is evident. Supported by the booming economy and increase in self-made millionaires - the number of millionaires in Poland is estimated to grow from approximately 50,000 to 89,000 by 2019 – the need for luxury homes will only increase. On a par with some of the finest residential developments in the world, Zlota 44 will set the benchmark for luxury living in Poland and meet the needs of the modern UHNWI.”
The tallest and most iconic residential development in Poland is Zlota 44, reaching 192 metres (629 ft.) in height. The luxury residential building designed by Daniel Libeskind has set a benchmark for skyscrapers in the city.
Located next to one of the largest shopping malls in Poland (Zlota Tarasy), Zlota 44 sits in the heart of the country's financial centre, with a number of global banks having major offices in Warsaw. The current major drivers that fuel the Polish economy include the technology sector, outsourced business services and chemical production industries, with Warsaw at the centre of it all. The city benefits from an abundance of green space, with of one quarter of the city consisting of parkland and open green space. Residents and visitors of Warsaw can also enjoy a number of restaurants, bars and cafes located in beautiful parks, town squares and along the riverbanks of the Wistula River.
In recent years, large European investment funds have begun to look to Poland as a reliable high-yield investment market, though mainly within the commercial sector. Funds such as Axa Group, Tristan Capital, IVG and Blackrock have all made large investments into retail, office and warehouse properties. Very few large funds have seen enough quality stock in the residential market to invest heavily, though with few super-prime developments, residential investment is becoming increasingly attractive to foreign and institutional investors.
The burgeoning Warsaw property market currently suits smaller-scale boutique investors. Gross rental yields regularly top 8.5%, significantly out-performing achievable yields in many other large European cities such as London (2%-5.5%), Paris (3%-4%), Berlin (3%-4%) and Budapest (6%-7%). Luxury property in Poland is also experiencing a high level of domestic demand, as a result of the rising purchasing power of professionals, businesspeople and high-net-worth Poles.
Most importantly for prospective investors, prices for super-prime luxury apartments in landmark developments such as Zlota 44 offer exceptional value, compared to similar schemes in other European cities. One-bedroom apartments within Zlota 44 start at £242,000 ($360,000) for 660 sq. ft. The opulent penthouses are available under private negotiation, with offers expected to exceed £7 million ($10.4 million). This is exceptional value for the level of quality on offer.
Investment in residential property is often seen as one of the most secure and appealing options for investors, due to a steady stream of rental income and opportunity for capital growth upon disposition – though this is also true of commercial real estate. However, the residential market is more accessible to private investors, given its smaller scale plus its large number of experts and service providers offering support to landlords. There is currently limited supply, with only a small number of large-scale residential developments in Warsaw (particularly in the luxury segment), and buyer demand is supported by a robust mortgage industry with low interest rates.
In particular, the luxury rental segment has experienced a lack of quality supply, with only slightly more than 1% of housing stock falling into this bracket. Super-luxe developments, offering top-level amenities, are in particularly short supply; however developments such as Zlota 44, which will feature the largest private swimming pool in Poland (along with other enviable amenities), are looking filling the gap in the market.
Poland's modern economy is supported by an ‘open-arm' government policy, allowing foreigners to purchase independent residential premises without strict requirements for non-national residential licences or forms. Landlord regulations are also in line with the rest of the European Union. There are no restrictions on initial rent levels and landlords have the right to increase rents if their property does not provide sufficient returns to justify continued investment, or if there is a sudden cost increase to the landlord.
Discussing the appeal of Poland to Middle Eastern investors, Alicja Kosciesza, commented:: “Year-on-year we are seeing an increase in interest, investment and visitors from the Middle East. One of the main reasons for this is the excellent education system on offer in Poland, currently ranked as one of the top 10 European nations in the Global Education League Table.
Ms. Kosciesza, further noted that: “Increasingly we are seeing more and more students from the Middle East come to Poland for its excellent schools and universities, culture and lifestyle, with their parents purchasing a home or apartment to live in whilst they study here. Zlota 44 is the most iconic building in Poland and will provide the most luxurious apartments, making it the ultimate residential destination for students seeking a high-quality luxury residence, with the same level of amenities and services found in the top residential buildings throughout the world.”