In February, there was a metamorphosis in the footage of apartments in new buildings

In February, there was a metamorphosis in the footage of apartments in new buildings

The rising cost per square meter has forced developers to reduce the size of apartments. But it seems the limit has been passed. According to statistics at the beginning of 2024, the square footage of housing has remained virtually unchanged, contrary to the five-year trend. The average area of ​​apartments and apartments for sale in all market segments was 54.4 square meters in February 2024 versus 54.3 square meters. m in February 2023.

In February 2024, the average area of ​​apartments (including apartments) in new buildings in Moscow for sale was 54.4 square meters. m, which practically coincides with the figure for February 2023. This dynamics was recorded for the first time since 2019, that is, in 2020-2022, apartments on average only became smaller. Thus, in 2020, the average area of ​​premises decreased by 5% (69.3 sq. m. to 65.7 sq. m.), in 2021 - by 11% (from 65.7 sq. m. to 58.3 sq. m.) , for 2022 – by 7% (from 58.3 sq. m to 54.3 sq. m).

Metrium analysts note that the average area varies under the influence of various factors. Among them is not only a change in the approach of developers to the formation of a product, but also, for example, an increase in the share of more expensive new buildings with relatively large apartments in the total supply. In addition, it affects the average area of ​​apartments remaining for sale and the demand for small premises, which are the first to go.

“First of all, such statistics are explained by the washing away of the most affordable and small-sized lots, which ultimately affected the overall picture on the market,” comments Oleg Kolchenko, shareholder, managing partner of Osnova Group of Companies. “In addition, from 2020 to 2023, demand was greatly influenced by state-supported mortgages, family mortgages, as well as reduced rates under subsidized programs of banks and developers, which expanded effective demand. As a result, many buyers could afford to purchase larger apartments than they could afford with a more expensive mortgage.

In the mass segment, virtually no changes in area were recorded over the past year. Thus, at the end of 2023, in new economy and comfort class buildings, developers offered premises with an average area of ​​44.3 square meters. m versus 44.6 sq. m a year ago. Meanwhile, in 2022 the figure decreased by 8%, in 2021 – 14%, in 2020 – by 5%.

At the same time, in business-class residential complexes, the area of ​​apartments and apartments decreased more noticeably over the year - from 61.8 sq. m. m up to 60.4 sq. m (by 1.4 sq. m or by 2%). But in past years, the average area of ​​premises in new buildings of this class decreased more radically: in 2022 - by 7%, in 2021 - by 8%, with the exception of 2020 (-1.5%).

Developers of premium residential complexes began to offer apartments with an average area of ​​1 sq. m less than at the end of 2022. In December 2023, the average room size in new houses of this class was 79.2 square meters. versus 80.2 sq. m in December 2022 (-1%). However, Metrium experts note, the average area indicator in premium new buildings is more volatile than in other market segments, and fluctuations of this magnitude may occur in other periods. As in other market segments, in the premium sector in previous years the average area of ​​premises decreased more noticeably: in 2022 - by 7%, in 2021 - by 15%, in 2020 - by 10%.

“The trend towards reducing apartment space cannot be interpreted unequivocally in a negative way,” says Zhanna Makhova, product director at MR Group. – This is especially true for the “premium” and “business” classes of new buildings. Let me remind you that the history of these segments began with residential complexes of the 2000s, in which 200-meter three-room apartments were the norm. Now the secondary housing market is full of such apartments - they are very difficult to sell, because buyers do not see the point in such huge apartments. Along with space optimization, the quality of planning solutions increased. In a modern premium complex, a 70-meter two-room apartment can be much more functional than a huge 200-meter penthouse from the 2000s.”

An exception to the general trend were new buildings in the high-budget segment of the market (elite and deluxe). On average, the area of ​​premises in them in February 2024 was 150.6 square meters. m versus 157.3 sq. m in February 2023. Thus, the indicator decreased by 4% over the year. However, experts note that in this market segment, the average often changes dramatically due to the supply structure. For example, in 2022 the average area decreased by 4%, in 2021 it increased by 24%, and in 2020 it decreased by 6%

In a broader retrospective, the average floor area in Moscow new buildings has decreased noticeably. Since the end of 2018, this figure has decreased by 21%. In physical terms, the average area of ​​an apartment or apartment in Moscow has decreased over five years from 68.5 square meters. m up to 54.4 sq. m, that is, 14.1 sq. m.

The most space lost was in new economy and comfort class buildings. Over five years they have become smaller by 25%, losing 14.6 square meters. m on average (44.3 sq. m now versus 58.9 sq. m at the end of 2018). This is followed by apartments in new premium buildings, which have decreased in area by 19% over five years. In 2023, their average area was 79.2 square meters. m, whereas at the end of 2018 it was 97.7 sq. m. m (minus 18.5 sq. m). Housing in new business-class buildings has lost an average of 16% in size. By the end of 2023, the average room area was 60.4 square meters. m versus 72.3 sq. m at the end of 2018 (minus 11.9 sq. m). Premises in elite and deluxe complexes have increased by 12% over five years (150.6 sq. m. versus 134.6 sq. m.).

“Most likely, the rate of reduction in apartments has slowed down temporarily,” says Ruslan Syrtsov, managing director of Metrium. – Mortgages are becoming expensive again, which means that buyers coming to the market for new buildings will save on space. If the period of high loan rates turns out to be long (more than a year), then we will see a new round of reduction in apartment space, as well as a change in the supply structure. There will be fewer three-room apartments, and the share of studios and one-room apartments will increase.”

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