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Selling to Russians News: Russian and Ukrainian buyers of international real estate
July 01, 2015

Hi Everyone,

Russian and Ukrainian buyers of international real estate

The most promoted Russian real estate portal for international real estate Prian published a report on Russian and Ukrainian buyers of foreign properties recently. (Almost all Ukrainians are Russian-speaking and use Russian internet resources, although there are several local portals in Kiev – some in Russian and some bilingual in Russian and Ukrainian).

According to the report Ukrainians buy real estate abroad for two reasons: 1. to find a budget property in a foreign country to move there permanently and 2. to invest their savings in something more solid than their own country in turmoil.

The first reason explains the huge Ukrainian interest in Bulgaria – the number of requests from Ukraine is 5 to 6 times more than a year ago. Bulgarian realtors confirm: in many resort areas Ukrainians buy more than the Russians now. (Well, we are talking about citizens of Ukraine and Russia here, not ethnicity of course).

As a rule Ukrainians buy cheaper properties than Russians – usually they are ready to spend up to 30,000 or 50,000 Euros. Sometimes there are requests for expensive homes too.

The second reason explains the growing demand for properties in Germany from Ukrainian buyers (about 40% over the year ago) and Czech Republic (about 50%). Real estate in both countries means a reliable investment that can bring 4 to 5% of the rental income and the market entrance amount is rather low, as there are rental apartments available to buy for under 30,000 Euros in small towns and they are pretty good for renting out.

Also the report states that Ukrainians buy more in Turkey now (twice more in comparison with a year ago). There are two attractions in Turkish real estate: rather inexpensive apartments with a purchase of which a foreigner receives the residence right and the fast property price growth (10% and more per year) which means that the owner has a capital gain even without renting his property out.

Top 10 countries for Ukrainians in the 1st Quarter of 2015: 1. Bulgaria 2. Germany 3. Spain 4. Czech Republic 5. Italy 6. USA 7. Turkey 8. Montenegro 9. Greece 10. France

Top 10 countries for Russians in the 1st Quarter of 2015: 1. Bulgaria 2. Spain 3. Germany 4. Turkey 5. USA 6. Italy 7. Montenegro 8. Czech Republic 9. Thailand 10. Greece

The tastes in international real estate are mostly the same for Russian and Ukrainian buyers. The same leading countries they require: Bulgaria, Spain, and Germany. But at the same time there are some differences because of geography, politics and finances…

For example, Russian buyers are very much interested in Finland and Baltic countries (these countries are not in the top 10 now, but always stay in the top 15), while for Ukrainian buyers they are not that attractive in terms of geography.

Ukrainians are not ready for exotic countries like Thailand, Egypt, United Arab Emirates, Dominican Republic. Russians buy many times more properties over there.

Russians are not historically interested in Poland, but for Ukrainians it’s the one of the most attractive countries in the European Union, especially for those who dream of getting residence rights. In 2013 (the latest data available) Ukrainians got about 237,000 residence permits in the EU, which is more than citizens of any other countries of the world. About 172,000 permits they obtained just from Poland. (It was in the era before the real recent turmoil in Ukraine started, since then the number of refugees from Ukraine has grown many times of course).

In general, there are twice as many Russians in the market of buying international real estate now, but Ukrainian demand was the fastest growing during the last year, the report concludes.

From another source of business news from Ukraine: as business conditions keep to worsen in Ukraine, Ukrainian businessmen are looking for moving their businesses abroad (a restaurateur or hotelier closes his Ukrainian operations and opens up a similar one abroad, etc.) They prefer Europe (78%), China (51%), North America (30%), Middle East (27%) and South-East Asia (25%) according to a survey (the total is more than 100% as some businessmen are open to several countries for their new businesses).

So, to catch up with the trend of Ukrainians buying residential and commercial properties abroad, you may keep advertising your real estate in Russian internet resources that Ukrainian buyers are used to, or target specifically Kiev portals as you wish. I can help with both directions of your real estate marketing.

To your best business success,


Olga Kellen,
"Anything Russian",
English - Russian Translator,
Associate member of ATA,
American Translators Association
Author of the e-book for realtors
Selling to Russians

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