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Warsaw makes top three of Europe’s metropolitan property markets


Warsaw climbed seven places to be ranked as the third most attractive metropolitan real estate market in Europe, according to Emerging Trends in Real Estate Europe 2012, an annual report by PwC and the Urban Land Institute.

The city received "good" scores for existing property performance and new property acquisitions (third and sixth place in Europe, respectively) and a "fair" mark for development prospects (fourth place). In the overall ranking it was bettered only by Istanbul and Munich, and came ahead of Berlin (fourth), Paris (sixth) or London (tenth). By way of comparison, Prague came 14th and Budapest 24th.

The study notes that Warsaw has become a strong favourite with international investors, right after London, Paris, German cities and Stockholm. This reflects the city’s anticipated growing role as the financial centre for Eastern Europe. Other pull factors mentioned by interviewees include high labour migration or favourable demographics. Of key importance is the strength of the Polish economy, which also makes raising investment financing easier. As a result, Warsaw is strongly favoured for office and retail investment.

However, outsiders rate the city and its prospects more highly than locally-based respondents, who just like their counterparts in other European capitals are preparing for more difficult conditions due to the anticipated economic slowdown. Under these circumstances, high-risk projects are less likely to be started. Residential construction in particular is perceived as a high-risk, oversupplied sector in Warsaw.

The report is based on interviews with more than 600 industry experts: investors, developers, property companies, lenders, brokers, and consultants. The interviews were conducted in November and December 2011.

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