ArmInfo. The real estate market of Armenia in the first half of 2017, despite the prolonged stagnation of prices, began to show weak signs of recovery. According to the director of the real estate agency "Bars" Marina Chatinyan, an increase in interest in real estate is observed in all market segments, from new buildings to land plots.
Commenting on the situation in the conversation with the ArmInfo correspondent, the expert informed that there is no activity that was in the pre-crisis period, and nevertheless, today there is a real movement. One of the key moments of the moderate restoration of the real estate market, the expert determined the seasonal factor, accompanied by the influx of representatives of the Diaspora, who rent accommodation for the period of rest in Armenia. However, similar revival in the market, according to Chatinyan, is not an innovation, but typical for the Armenian market every year in the summer.
Adhering to more optimistic views, M. Chatinyan does not exclude the duration of the observed positive trends and exclusion of dependence on seasonal factors. However, the expert could not give medium-term/short-term forecasts concerning the movement of prices for real estate. To this end, in her opinion, serious economic justifications are needed, in particular, creation of new jobs, liberalization of the tax field, etc. "The situation is certainly better than a year ago, but I do not see any significant progress. However, if the fact that our government is intentionally implemented will be clever and effective, then the situation will change for the better with time," she said.
In this context, as an influential factor, the expert noted the construction project for Block N33 (market area on Firdusi Street not far from Republic Square), where multi- storey underground parking lots, new streets, public and service facilities, business centers and hotels will appear. "When construction is in progress, it is a push for all types of business, new buildings will appear, investments will be made, jobs will be created and this will all bring economic revival first of all in the capital," said M. Chatinian. However, in her opinion, the stabilization of prices in Armenia may be affected by a decrease in the outflow of population due to the observed instability abroad.
Speaking about the activities of Bars agency, Ms. Chatinian noted that for the first half of 2017, sales of real estate increased by 10% year on year. Positive dynamics, according to her, is primarily due to increased interest in the primary real estate market, whereas previous year, the secondary was more active in terms of demand. In this regard, she noted the exclusive sale of luxury apartments in a residential complex located in one of the best parts of the city - on the upper left slope of the Cascade. In just one month, she said, three apartments were sold, which is a good indicator for this period. Along with that there is some interest in agricultural plots and commercial real estate, which to some extent, she said, is associated with positive trends in the economy. However, Ms. Chatinyan did not exclude the possibility of revitalizing the mortgage market, in view of the agency's agreement with the finance structures to provide housing in the complex Cascade in mortgage at an interest rate of 8.8% per annum. "According to the Yerevan standards this is a very good indicator, the program will be launched soon and the mortgage market should become more active," she explained.
Returning to the official data, the head of Bars agency, noted that State Committee of the Real Estate Cadastre of the RA leads several buyers disorienting the calculation. "How to average the prices for a new building, panel buildings, "Khrushchyevka", etc. and use these data as a pricing factor?" , - stated the expert. Summing up the conversation, Ms. Chatinian noted that the shift in the real estate market for the first half of 2017, although easy, but still tangible, as compared with the previous period affected all segments of the market.
Nevertheless, according to the State Committee of Real Estate Cadastre, the average market value of housing in Armenia decreased by 1% per annum in the first half of 2017, and by 1.3% over the first half of the year, to 183.1 thousand drams/1 sq. m. Apartment blocks on average for the year (first half of 2017 to the same period of 2016) fell by 0.3% - to 180.5 thousand drams/1 sq. m. (the decline for the half-year was 0.9%). In particular, the price of an apartment in Yerevan was 267.2 thousand drams/1 sq.m. (with an annual decline of 2.8% and for the half-year - 2.9%), and in the regions - 84.8 thousand drams/1 sq.m. (with a more significant annual decline of 3% with a decline in the half year by 5%).
Meanwhile, prices for private houses on average for the first half of 2017 fell by 1.6% to 185.7 thousand drams/1 sq. m., with a decline for the first half of 2007 by 1.7%. In the regions the cost of 1 sq.m. of private house decreased for the year and half a year by 1.6% to 89.4 thousand drams.
In the capital the cost of 1 sq.m. for private house in annual terms decreased by 1.6% to 282 thousand drams/1 sq. m., with a decline for the first half of 2007 by 1.7%. In total, the price is 1 sq.m. in the capital's residential real estate (multi-apartment buildings and private houses) fell by 0.16% on an annual basis, making an average of 279 thousand drams, and for the half-year - by 0.7%.
According to the State Statistics Committee, the highest prices for apartments in Yerevan have traditionally been kept by the community of Kentron (Center) - 435.5 thousand drams/1 sq. m. on average, with an annual growth of 1.8%, with growth for the first half of 2007 by 1.7%. Then follows Arabkir, where the price of multi-apartment buildings is fixed at 347.2 thousand drams/1 sq. m., with an annual decline of 2.7% and for the half-year by 2.8%. These communities also traditionally record the highest prices for private homes: Kentron - 476.2 thousand drams/1 sq.m. (annual growth of 0.02% with a decline of 0.03% over the half year) and Arabkir - 381.6 thousand drams/1 sq.m, with a decline for the year and half-year by 0.4%.
The lowest prices for housing in the capital are invariably preserved in Nubarashen, where the prices for apartments during the reporting period amounted to 156.8 thousand drams/1 sq. m. (annual decline by 0.4 and for half-year - 0.2%), and the cost of private houses - 150.4 thousand drams/1 sq.m. on average (a decline for the year and half a year by 0.3%).
In the regions, the highest prices for private homes were recorded in the resort town of Tsakhkadzor (Kotayk region) - 302.7 thousand drams/1 sq. m. (with a decline for the year and half-year by 0.8%). Then follows: Abovyan (Kotayk region) - 156.6 thousand drams/1 sq. m. (annual decline of 0.4%, and 0.5% for half year) and Vagharshapat (Armavir region) - 151.6 thousand drams/1 sq. m. (with a decline in the year and half a year by 1%). In the regions, the three above-mentioned cities are also leading in terms of apartment prices: Tsakhkadzor - 290.9 thousand drams/1 sq. m. (with a decline for the year and half a year by 0.5%), Abovyan - 151.4 thousand drams/1 sq. m. (with a decline for the year and half of the year by 2.4%) and Vagharshapat - 143.2 thousand drams/1 sq. m. (with a decline for the year and half a year by 7.1%).