The different events observed all along 2022 strongly and quickly hit the global economy, with an immediate effect on the real estate markets throughout Europe. Every asset class is impacted, though fortunes are different between countries and segments. However, the residential market observed a slightly different evolution.
In Belgium, the purchasing prices continued to rise all along 2022, though the number of transactions recorded a first hit since many years. Price increases, combined with tighter financing conditions, inflation and high energy prices limit the acquisition possibilities for households while the investment market recorded mitigated performances.
Belgian households pay increasing attention to the environmental performances of their dwelling, exponentially conscious of the sustainability issues and looking to limit their energy costs. In the meantime, the different regional governments set up ambitious objectives and aim to reach carbon neutrality of the residential stock by 2050. They also introduced indexation limits linked to the EPC performances of the dwellings. In the meantime, the number of building permits delivered in 2022 decreased strongly, limiting therefore the needed rejuvenation of the stock.
Price increases and societal changes contribute to a profound reshaping of the households’ needs regarding their dwellings. New residential formats emerge to adapt. The coliving is already common in other European cities and could potentially become the next “big thing” for the Belgian residential market. However, there is a need, both for the private and public actors, to understand the fundamentals of this new living form to integrate it into the future Belgian landscape.
These are some of the challenges and opportunities you will discover by reading the second edition of our residential market report.