Romania Real Estate Market Overview
Romania is a kind of terra incognita not only in the European real estate market, but also in the field of tourism – except for the Black Sea coast of Constanta, Dracula’s castle in Transylvania, Gypsies, Ceausescu regime and the legendary Negresco hotel in Nice, named after its Romanian founder, – little is known about this country.
Romania in 2007 became part of the European Union, but so far has not joined the Schengen countries. True, news feeds report that in order to enter the Schengen zone, the country needs to fulfill a number of EU requirements, and this issue will have to be resolved in the foreseeable future. A similar situation is now with Bulgaria and Croatia, where it is also necessary to make national visas for entry, however, if the passport has multiple “Schengen”, then all three countries can be visited without problems.
Thus, everyone who wants to come to Romania with long-term visas and residence permits issued by the Schengen states, Croatia, Bulgaria or Cyprus no longer needs a Romanian short-stay visa to enter Romania for a period not exceeding 90 days during any period of 180 days. It is also important to know that buying a property in Romania does not automatically obtain a residence permit.
The Romanian real estate market at present is a very interesting picture: in 2018, the largest percentage of home ownership in Europe was recorded in Romania with an impressive 95.6%, ahead of Croatia, Latvia (both 89.9% each) and Slovakia (89.5%). A year earlier, Romania, along with Poland, led the European rating with the lowest number of overnight stays booked by non-residents, although the countries that followed were not much behind in terms of indicators – Germany (21%), Sweden (25%), France and Finland (31%) . Thus, we can conclude that the inhabitants of Romania become homeowners more often than other countries in Europe, while foreign tourists visit the country infrequently – a completely logical causal relationship.
Transylvania – the new leader in the real estate market
This year, in many European media, information is increasingly coming across that investors from all over the world have steadily turned their attention to Romania and its cities. Local real estate, which is almost unknown on the international housing market and therefore one of the most accessible in the region, the presence of the sea, mountains, numerous balneological sources, rich picturesque nature, delicious and ecological agricultural products and quite close to Romanian Italian and French, allows potential investors to actively invest in local square meters. Now, foreigners are most attracted to the cities of Transylvania, which in terms of demand will soon be able to compete with the capital Bucharest, which used to be the only settlement that interested non-residents of the country.
Due to the active development of the Transylvania region, investors began to acquire real estate in this part of Romania. The standard of living in Transylvania is now getting better, in some ways even surpassing the possibilities of Bucharest. In Transylvania, large offices of global companies are actively opening amid (so far) excellent environmental performance – all this attracts foreign investors well. The most popular are now such cities as Cluj-Napoca (the second largest city), Timisoara (the third largest settlement located near the border with Serbia) and Brasov (one of the ten largest cities in the country).
Romania can compete with Bulgaria in terms of the cost of housing – in both countries for 20-30 euros you can buy good quality apartments located with good geographical characteristics by the sea or in the mountains. However, if we are talking about buying real estate in Bucharest, you will have to pay over 50,000 euros for an apartment in a new building with an area of 65 sq. M. At the same time, residential real estate in historic buildings with a large footage can reach 100,000 euros. For the same price, you can buy a house on the Black Sea coast of Constanta.
Property for connoisseurs of historical architecture
Romanian cities, in addition to numerous royal palaces, are also beautiful in that there are a sufficient number of historic villas in the local housing stock (and also in the urban area of the capital Bucharest) in the Art Deco style with fireplaces and other picturesque attributes of a multi-year private home. The cost of such objects has no upper limits, however, on the local real estate market you can find similar objects for 600-700,000 euros.