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Published: 19 february 2020 13:44

O. Lapinskė. Lithuanians no longer buy homes for life: needs change every decade

Olga Lapinskė
Olga Lapinskė

Will the property that I am buying be easy to sell in ten years? This is a question that comes up more and more often in real estate expert meetings with clients and it allows us to conclude that the times when we used to buy apartments or houses for life, are now behind us. Residents purchase real estate based on specific needs and as those needs change, they embark on a search for a new home.

Different needs – different homes

Newcomers that are looking for a new home, take many different criteria into account. Yet, as we can see from the resident opinion surveys of the five biggest cities in Lithuania, the most important is a functional layout. 50% of the respondents name it as their top priority. Yet, the residents with different needs have different understandings of what a functional layout is. It is one thing for young people, buying their first home, and another thing for families with children.

As we observed by communicating with clients in Vilnius, the latter are looking for 3-4 room ergonomically planned apartments, ranging from 52 to 87 sq. m. The families with two children are looking to provide them with separate rooms that don’t necessarily have to be large. Also, the families always evaluate the enclosed territory of the project and the opportunities to spend time outdoors, such as leisure spaces near the house or nearby city parks, cycling or hiking trails.

Young people (25-35 years) who are buying their first home or couples without children are looking for smaller spaces. They are interested in the apartments that are the most popular in Vilnius market right now – 2 room apartments ranging from 45 to 55 sq. m. They are career-oriented or study-oriented people, and they care about quick and convenient access to both downtown offices and academic institutions scattered throughout the capital. The same type of apartments are interesting for older people as well, but they also appreciate the surrounding nature and peace.

Yet, all of the aforementioned groups have a special interest in places with separate wardrobe spaces, two bathrooms, private terraces, three-way windows or panoramic city or nature views.

People change homes more often, but they choose carefully

When making real estate decisions, newcomers fully consider both short and long term prospects. To find out all the details, they dedicate 1-2 hours for a meeting with a residential development company.

First, they seek to understand the quality of life that one or another housing option has to offer: they are interested in energy class, customized technical solutions, inquire about whether the recuperator is included in the price, look at the leisure spaces and how the neighbourhood will be administered and maintained in the future. They are also interested in other perks that the developer has to offer - a chance to split the down payment, order finishing services, etc.

Secondly, the residents rationally consider their needs and understand that they will inevitably change in the future. This encourages them to assess the liquidity of the home that is being purchased – to find out how lasting are the solutions, what urban infrastructure will surround it in the future, how might the market price change in, for example, a decade. Of course, there are also those who want to replace their existing home with a new one, which can be caused by a variety of reasons, from the desire to have a bigger home for their growing family to a more convenient location or heating costs.

The real estate developers also react to the different needs of the clients. For example, we break down the Omberg's customer portrait into many micro-segments and then polish the project concepts in order to offer the market a broader assortment, tailored specifically for those micro-segments.

That is why in Bajorai we offer a life near the forest, but also all the advantages of city infrastructure. In Viršuliškės we offer panoramic views of the city and convenient communication with the centre of the capital and in Pašilaičiai we offer peace, that is in line with the city infrastructure and the benefits of the bypass. We also aim to tailor the solutions offered in a particular neighbourhood to different needs: from enclosed areas, underground parking and leisure spaces to roof terraces for recreation.

We and all the other real estate developers are driven to look for new solutions by the increasing demands of the clients and intense competition. In any case, this is good news for everyone looking for a new home: the market has never been this developed and diverse.

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