The proof is in the past. Take London for instance. Here
real estate prices have doubled every ten years since the
end of the Second World War. In the last decade they have
even outstripped this average rising 116% between the start
of 2000 and the end of 2007.
Perhaps when people say “Warsaw is over” they mean investors
will not achieve a 100% capital gain return in one to two
years anymore. If you do your research then this may also
prove false; you should still be able to achieve fantastic
capital gains if you buy wisely. Warsaw is no longer one
homogenous blob, it is a metropolis of neighbourhoods and
suburbs, each of which can rise or fall by differing
London’s recent past shows how locations within a city can
provide exceptional investments even when “the average” does
In Tower Hamlets, between 2001 and 2002, the values of many
ex-local authority flats went up 65%. In Stoke Newington the
Red Square development saw units that sold for £180,000 in
the same year jump to nearly £300,000 twelve months later.
In Shepherds Bush owners of two bedroom flats on the New
Holland Green complex became £100,000 richer in the space of
six months during 2007.
For experienced property investors, even after 60 years,
London is not over but locations are crucial. The same is
true of Warsaw because, like London, it is a sound city. Its
economy is supported by a strong and ever-growing business
and commercial district; its old town along with the
diversity of the rest of the city are slowly being uncovered
by tourists; its location by the motorway between Moscow and
Berlin makes it ideal for logistics; its culture is diverse
and the thousands of students and workers from all over the
globe who descend there every year keep it fresh and keep it
4 Factors To Consider for Warsaw Real Estate Buyers
So where to look? The answer is not to point at a particular
suburb but instead to consider the factors that will make an
area come to life. This can only happen when the general
population has been priced out of the city centre and it is
safe to say in Warsaw this has already happened.
The first factor is transport. No one wants to spend longer
than they have to commuting so follow the tramlines or the
bus routes with frequent services. Alternatively look for
neighbourhoods, such as Bialoleka, with large numbers of new
developments planned or under construction. In the future
these will have transport links to serve the demand of the
incoming owners and tenants.
2. Commercial Property
Secondly look for areas with space for commercial
businesses. It does not matter if they are beaten up cafes,
junk shops or even derelict at the moment. What matters is
that when young professionals move into an area there is
room for coffee shops, delicatessens, bars, restaurants and
other services. If an area does not have this but there are
a great deal of residential blocks and complexes being built
check if they have put aside space for these amenities.
Thirdly look up. Look at the architecture. It may be
crumbling or decaying at the moment but when it is renovated
will it look attractive? This factor is a little harder in
Poland than say, the United Kingdom, as Poles show
incredible ingenuity when it comes to re-cladding and re-
facing concrete blocks.
4. Green Space
Finally look for green space. It is not essential but if all
the other factors are in place at more than one location
then a park will be the bonus for buyers of the future.
Evidence of all four of the above can be seen in Mokotów.
Streets were eyesores but they were within walking distance
of the centre, there was plenty of space for the amenities
young professionals wanted, the architecture could be
returned to its former glory or there was space for modern
blocks and large parks were just around the corner.
In the case of Warsaw price rises are far from over but for
investors it is time to take a walk beyond the beaten track
of the mainstream buyers and make an educated gamble in the
suburbs. It is exactly what trailblazers did in the city
centre fifteen years ago when most people wouldn’t have
given Warsaw a second look.
Warsaw has all the makings of a city for the smart property
investor and over the coming years there may well be many
who regret their decision not to buy when the margin for
fast gains was so attractive. Don’t you be one of them!
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