Anyone who wanted to buy a condominium in 2022 had to be quicker and had less choice than in 2021. In other words: condominiums sold more easily again, especially in the conurbations. In rural areas, on the other hand, they were less in demand in many places than a year ago. Overall, the number of advertised condominiums decreased by five per cent last year. At the same time, the average listing duration fell by nine per cent. In summary, this results in higher demand than a year ago. This is surprising since interest rates increased significantly during this time, while the use of home office decreased.
Zurich, 20 April 2023 – The latest edition of the Online Home Market Analysis by the real estate portals Homegate and ImmoScout24, in collaboration with the Swiss Real Estate Institute (SwissREI), analyses the listings data for condominiums for the year 2022. The listings analysed come from several major real estate portals in Switzerland and thus comprise the majority of all online listings for the period under review.
Declining number and duration of advertisements
While the listing period for condominiums remained above 80 days during the Covid19 pandemic, it has now fallen again by eight days to 77 days nationwide for 2022. At the same time, there was a five per cent decrease in supply to around 70,000 properties. The combination of these two values shows that across Switzerland, demand for condominiums increased in 2022.
For Martin Waeber, Managing Director Real Estate at SMG Swiss Marketplace Group, the results of the current analysis show the robustness of the Swiss real estate market: “Home ownership is and remains a sought-after but limited commodity in Switzerland. Because despite significantly higher financing costs, condominiums sold faster again last year than in the previous year”. Except for the regions of Ticino and Geneva, the length of time for which condominiums are held has shortened, in some cases significantly, in the majority of the regions surveyed. “On the one hand, this shows the continuing and even increased demand for condominiums. On the other hand, real estate platforms such as Homegate and ImmoScout24 are the best possible way to avoid missing out on offers in a highly competitive market and to maintain an often time-critical lead”, Waeber continued.
Advertisement durations in the regions are aligning – with the exception of Ticino
Looking at the individual regions of Switzerland, the spread in the listing duration has narrowed over the past year. In other words, the Swiss real estate market is becoming more balanced in terms of condominium sales. Condominiums continued to sell fastest in the Zurich region, namely within 43 days. This value remained unchanged compared to 2021. In six other regions, the tender duration even decreased between five and seventeen per cent. The situation is different in Geneva, where the average listing time increased slightly by just under two per cent. Ticino continues to be decoupled from the other regions. Here, the already longest duration of advertisements increased by another seven per cent last year.
Almost universal increase in demand for condominiums
The combination of changes in the duration and number of advertisements allows conclusions to be drawn about demand in Switzerland as a whole and in the individual regions. In the Zurich region, for example, a thirteen per cent increase in the number of advertisements was registered compared to the previous year. Since, despite this increase in supply, the duration of listings in Zurich did not increase to the same extent – but, on the contrary, remained unchanged between 2021 and 2022 – from this, an increased demand for condominiums in this region can be derived.
With one exception – Ticino – the same picture emerges for the remaining regions of Switzerland: they all report a combination of listing duration and number for 2022, which places them in the area of increasing demand. In Ticino, on the other hand, condominiums had to be advertised for nine days longer last year with an almost unchanged supply volume. It can therefore be concluded that demand is decreasing in this region.
Conurbations clearly stronger in trend than rural communities
Differences in the demand for owner-occupied flats are not only apparent with regard to the regions, but a clear picture also emerges when comparing the type of municipality: while in the municipalities in the first ring of conurbations (“suburban municipalities”), seven of the eight regions surveyed showed an increase in demand for home ownership, in the “rural commuter municipalities”, on the other hand, a weakening in demand was frequently observed. The rural communities in the regions of Espace Mittelland and Ticino suffered a particularly strong decline in demand. On the other hand, demand only increased in Zurich and central Switzerland. The situation is completely different in the suburban municipalities: here, it is only Ticino where demand declined slightly, even in the urban areas.
For Peter Ilg, Head of the Swiss Real Estate Institute, it is astonishing how quickly the real estate markets have “returned to normal” after the Covid19 pandemic: “During the pandemic, it was often claimed that an irreversible trend towards a new world of work had begun. Just one year later, we see that this is hardly the case. Home office is already being significantly reduced again in most, especially smaller, companies. This is also reflected in the change in demand for condominiums: rural communities are once again less in demand, while those around the centres are once again significantly more in demand.”