Real estate in St. Petersburg
St. Petersburg, the second largest and important city of Russia after Moscow, holds a confident second place in terms of real estate prices as well. Petersburg realty prices reach the level of the major world capitals.
In recent years, countryside real estate market experienced a stable growth and became more prestigious, elite and expensive: there are no other places in Russia, where you can work in the city and live in the countryside, spending about 1-1,5 hours to reach the fresh breeze of Baltic sea.
However, St. Petersburg real estate market is extremely varied, not only by price, but by quality as well.
Looking on the market at a whole we can outline three areas of construction. First area contains old buildings in the city center (mostly they are located in Central, Petrogradskiy, Admiralteiskiy and Vasilievskiy island districts). Relatively new industrial and residential area is the second (Viborgskiy, Kalininskiy, Kirovskiy, Krasnogvardeiskiy, Krasnosel’skiy, Moscovskiy, Nevskiy, Primorskiy and Frunsenskiy districts). The third area is Leningrad region in a radius of 20-40 km from St. Petersburg (the most expensive realty in this area is sold in Vsevologskiy, than Viborgskiy, Lomonosovskiy and Priozerskiy districts).
The most expensive urban real estate objects are located in the Petrogradskiy and Central districts of the city, followed by Vasilievskiy island and Admiralteiskiy area. Average price per square meter (APM) in this areas is 25% higher in comparison to residential districts. But this is the average data, that includes “komunalki” (shared apartments) and shabby buildings, on the verge of demolition. Practically a renovated apartment with a view on historical site like St. Isaac’s Cathedral or just close to Smolny, the governor residence, will cost several times more expensive than a cozy flat on the outskirts of residential area. Every year it’s harder to find sites for construction in the historic part of the city, new buildings in this area become the most expensive estate of St. Petersburg. Earlier Leningrad (former name of St. Petersburg) was a major scientific and industrial center of the Soviet Union and today the city has 57 industrial zones, still 29 of them are located at the heart of the city. That makes new construction extremely limited and obviously affects real estate prices.
At the beginning of 2013 average price per square meter (APM) in a new building in the center of St. Petersburg was 130 120 rub/sq. m (3 253 eur/sq. m), APM for secondary market was 93 000 rub/sq. m. Real estate prices in the city center proved themselves stable in recent years (no growth, sometimes slight falls), the residential area prices, on the contrary, are steadily growing.
The most expensive residential district is Moskovskiy. The price per square meter here doesn’t differ a lot from the city center and continues to rise, because the area consists mostly of “Stalin” buildings (High-cost architecture built in the Soviet Union under the leadership of Joseph Stalin), historically built and designed for high-class.
The next in the prices line come the Vyborgskiy, Krasnogvardeisky, Kalininskiy and Primorskiy districts. Krasnosel’skiy district is the cheapest area of the city, on average even lower than the suburbs (like Pushkin city or Kurortniy area). The prices increase in these areas on the secondary market about 10% per year and almost 15% on new buildings.
APM on the secondary market in St. Petersburg is 93 000 rubles. Prices in accordance with districts are represented in the table (as of January 2013):
Prices raised by 9% on the market of buildings under construction in 2012. Petersburg suburbs, such as Shushary Devyatkino, Kolpino, are developed faster due to availability of allotments for construction. The city grows in the direction of Leningrad region by its Primorskiy, Kurortniy and Vyborgskiy districts.
St. Petersburg is often called the “cultural capital of Russia”, a city of palaces, magnificent views and bridges, – buying luxury property here is both prestigious and fashionable. This trend appeared in 2000, when a native citizen of St. Petersburg Vladimir Putin became a Russian President. As it was already mentioned the most expensive and prestigious real estate is sold in the Central and Petrogradskiy districts. According to the experts, the price leader of the areas is project “Zoological 2-4”, a new building with a view at the Hermitage, priced up to 1.5 million rubles per square meter (37 500 eur/sq. m). Another object, which can be associated by price – house “Venice” on Krestovskiy island - 252 million rubles (6,3 mln euro) for apartment of 458 square meters. The top three most expensive buildings rating in St. Petersburg is closed by “Premier Palace”, the complex located on the shores of the Gulf of Finland with its own marina (price per square meter – up to 358.5 thousand rubles).
Apartment loan, mortgage
For residents with lower income the city’s banks offer a developed system of loans. Mortgage in St. Petersburg is offered by more than 40 banks excessing 350 different programs for apartment purchases at both primary and secondary markets. Mortgage rates are in the range from 6.00 to 18.00% per annum on loans in rubles and 5.98 – 15.00% per annum on loans in foreign currency. Mortgage down payment begin from 0%, the loan can be taken up to 50 years.
In addition, there is a social mortgage for those who are waiting for public housing improvements. This program registers you in a special waiting list to buy an apartment and when your time comes the apartment can be bought half the market price. Participation in the social mortgage program is approved for socially vulnerable citizens, eligible to take advantage of government subsidies and privileges (“maternity capital”, benefits for young and large families, military mortgages, etc).
However, the social mortgage has a very complicated procedure of documents collection and time-consuming process of confirmation of the borrower’s right on benefits.
Mortgage real estate market continues its growth. In 2012 in St. Petersburg 25,6 thousands of mortgage loans were granted amounting to 54,3 billions rubles, which is 15% more than in 2011.
Rating of real estate agencies of St. Petersburg
According to mafors.ru the real estate market of the city is presented by more than 500 participants, the largest of them are listed below: St. Petersburg real estate, Adveks. Real Estate, Ithaca, Alexander Real Estate, Bekar.
Translation by Kira Egorova