Overseas property

Statistics: In 2022, Russians bought up thousands of apartments in Turkey, Georgia, and Dubai

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The authorities of Turkey and Georgia reported a record number of real estate deals concluded by Russians in these countries during the 12 and 9 months of 2022, respectively. The high activity of buyers from Russia was noted by official sources from Thailand and Spain based on the data on registration of ownership rights in 2022.

Official sources in the UAE as well as in many EU countries, popular among Russian investors, did not disclose statistics on foreign transactions. According to Tranio, in 2022, the top 10 countries for buying property abroad, along with the countries mentioned above, included Greece, Cyprus, Montenegro, France, and Italy.

Top 10 countries popular among Russians for buying property
Tranio’s data on applications from Russians for the 12 months of 2022

The Middle East has become the main direction of real estate investments for Russians: the number of deals is in the thousands

According to Tranio, the demand of Russian-speaking clients to buy property in Turkey over the past year increased by more than 3 times (by 267%), in the UAE — by more than 4 times (by 368%).

The Turkish authorities confirm the high activity of Russians on the local market: in 2022, Russian citizens purchased 16,432 residential properties in Turkey. According to TUIK, foreigners bought 67,490 properties in total, in other words, Russians accounted for about a quarter of all deals. According to Tranio, the median budget of Russian-speaking home buyers in Turkey was 142,000 euro.

Property for sale in Turkey 10,039 listings on Tranio

In the UAE property market, the vast majority of investments fall on Dubai: this emirate has the most areas where foreigners can purchase apartments, houses, and land plots in full ownership (freehold), and not only in long-term lease (leasehold). Many Dubai property market experts have noted a sharp increase in demand from investors from Russia; however, the Emirate Land Department (DLD) has not yet provided any official data on the buyers’ citizenship.

In 2022, the total number of real estate deals in Dubai reached 97,252, according to DLD. Tranio estimates that Russians have purchased at least 15,000 of these properties. If we also include the CIS citizens’ deals, then the total result can be about 20,000 properties. The median budget of buyers was 300,000 euro, according to Tranio’s statistics.

Dubai property for sale 681 listings on Tranio

Last year, Russian citizens actively invested in real estate in Georgia: according to media reports, citing the data from the online portal of the Ministry of Justice of Georgia, in 8 months (from 01/01/2022 to 09/09/2022) citizens of the Russian Federation purchased 15,164 properties in this country, including 13,152 apartments. Given the surge in Russian demand for overseas property in October 2022, the total annual number is likely to significantly exceed 20,000 properties. However, in monetary terms, the volume of Russian investments in real estate in Georgia was less than in the UAE and Turkey: according to Tranio, the median budget of Russian-speaking buyers in this country last year was 80,000 euro.

In Europe, Russian investors choose Cyprus, Spain, and Greece, while in Asia — Thailand

According to Tranio, a significant proportion of requests from Russian-speaking clients are related to the purchase of real estate in European countries, primarily in Spain (8.0%), Greece (7.5%) and Cyprus (5.5%), as well as in Montenegro (4.3%), France (3.7%) and Italy (3.2%). By the end of January 2023, only a few of these countries published official data on real estate deals involving foreigners.

According to the Land Registry Offices of Spain, in 2022, Russians accounted for 1.81% of all property deals, or 1,685 in absolute terms. The activity of Russian investors in Spain only slightly decreased in 2022 compared to 2021, when they accounted for 1.9% of deals. Unlike some other countries, the Spanish authorities have not suspended the Golden Visa issuance for real estate investments for citizens of the Russian Federation, which helps to maintain Russian demand in this market. According to Tranio, the median budget of Russian-speaking clients for the purchase of real estate in Spain in 2022 increased to 220,000 euro, while a year earlier it was 200,000 euros.

Property for sale in Spain 10,103 listings on Tranio

In Greece, on the other hand, the Golden Visa’s issuance for Russians was suspended last year. According to the Greek Ministry of Migration and Asylum, by the end of H1 2022, 431 Russians had an active investment visa in Greece, which is 28% less than in December 2021. It is not yet clear how exactly this has affected the volume of investment in real estate, since the Bank of Greece has not yet provided relevant statistics. According to Tranio, the median budget of Russian-speaking buyers in Greece last year was 250,000 euro.

Real estate in Greece 6,052 listings on Tranio

In previous years, Greece has been one of the most popular holiday destinations for Russians. After the suspension of the Golden Visa programme, resort houses by the sea in Greece have become less in demand; however, the demand for real estate in Athens remains. In 2022, this market has become one of the leaders in the EU in terms of rental price growth.

Tranio’s clients looking for a stable rental income are now willing to invest in serviced apartments in Athens. When moving to Greece, you can get a digital nomad visa with a Russian passport; investors can apply for a Golden Visa with a second passport (for example, Turkish or Grenadian).

However, in 2022, our clients from Russia, who are planning to move to Europe for permanent residence, have often considered Cyprus. In this EU country, you can get a residence permit for investments in real estate from 300,000 euros, and tax benefits attract many businessmen and IT specialists to Cyprus.

Elena Milishenkova Elena Milishenkova Tranio’s Chief Commercial Officer

According to Tranio’s statistics, the median budget of Russian-speaking clients for the purchase of real estate in Cyprus in 2022 coincided with the requirements of the permanent residence for investment programme and amounted to 300,000 euro. According to the Cyprus’ Department of Land and Surveys, over the past year, property in the country was purchased by 3,383 foreigners (non-EU citizens). The authorities do not disclose the origin of the participants in the transactions. According to Tranio’s experts, based on their own data and statistics of developer partners, Russians accounted for about half of foreign deals in the primary property market in Cyprus in 2022.

Property for sale in Cyprus 7,375 listings on Tranio

Last year, Russians became one of the most active investors in the real estate market in Thailand. According to the Government Housing Bank of Thailand, in 2022, Russian citizens purchased 813 apartments in the country, taking second after Chinese citizens in the ranking of the most active foreign investors. According to Tranio, in November and December 2022, the demand of Russians for Thai real estate was noticeably higher than the year’s average, so the total number of deals over the 12 months may exceed the statistically probable threshold of 600 deals. In 2022, the median budget of Russian-speaking clients for the purchase of real estate in Thailand amounted to 150,000 euro.

Thailand property for sale 3,251 listings on Tranio
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