House prices were up 4.03% y-o-y in 2019

The average selling price of apartments in Romania rose by 4.03% in 2019 from a year earlier, following y-o-y rises of 3.07% in 2018, 7.3% in 2017, 11.01% in 2016, and 7.74% in 2015. In a quarterly basis, Romanian real house prices rose strongly by 4.3% in Q4 2019.

House price growth averaged 8.7% annually from 2015 to 2017 before slowing to 3.1% in 2018. Romania's strong performance over the past five years is a rebound from previous dramatic falls. House prices plunged by 24.22% in 2009, 22.08% in 2010, 6.99% in 2011, 5.96% in 2012, 10.43% in 2013, and 1.59% in 2014. It was only in 2015 that the housing market began to recover. 

Demand increasing again, construction activity steady

In the third quarter of 2019, the demand for residential dwellings in Romania’s six biggest cities surged 16% y-o-y to about 175,000 units, according to real estate intelligence platform Analize Imobiliare. This is in line with figures released by the National Agency for Cadastre and Real Estate Advertising, which showed that the total number of real estate sales transactions in Romania rose by 11% y-o-y to 382,996 units in the first three quarters of 2019.

Yet residential construction was almost steady. In the first eleven months of 2019, the total number of residential building permits in Romania fell slightly by 1.5% to 39,359 units from a year earlier, according to the National Institute of Statistics (INS). The area of residential building permits issued increased marginally by 0.6% y-o-y to 10.02 million sq. m. in Jan-Nov 2019.

Rents, rental yields: good yields at 6.07%

Bucharest apartment costs are low, at around €1,591 per sq. m.

Romania: typical city centre apartment buying price, monthly rent (120 sq. m)
  Buying price Rate per month Yield
Bucharest € 190,920 € 966 6.07%

Recent news: Romania’s economy remains strong, registering a real GDP growth of 4.1% in 2019, following y-o-y expansions of 4% in 2018, 7% in 2017, 4.8% in 2016, 3.9% in 2015 and 3.4% in 2014, according to the European Commission (EC). The government targets economic growth of 4.1% this year.