#1 Real estate in Latvia by BalticLegal 19.12.2022 18:16

Real estate in Latvia is immovable property, which usually consists of land (possibly including all natural resources, depending on the agreement) and all buildings attached to it. A condominium can also be a specific part of a building, combined with a defined participation in the underlying property. If a foreigner buys a property in Latvia and the deal meets certain requirements, this type of investment can entitle the buyer to apply for a residence permit.

Overview of the Latvian real estate market
According to the annual overview provided by the Latvian State Land Service (hereafter SLS), in the period from the second half of 2011 to the second half of 2012, 49% of the total real estate transaction turnover came from residential and commercial construction, making more than half ( 51%) of all sales are made with land.

As SLS mentioned in its report, today the biggest players in the real estate market in Latvia are commercial banks and their affiliates. The second position (by the volume of financial turnover with real estate) is occupied by foreign investors, many of whom aim to obtain a residence permit in Latvia on the basis of real estate purchase. The fact that Latvia's credit rating and GDP have risen significantly in recent years while the ratings of other European countries have fallen has been instrumental in stimulating the interest and confidence of foreign investors - particularly in the Latvian real estate market. Many studies and visible trends show that spending on real estate in Latvia will continue to increase for the foreseeable future. The pace of growth has been strong but steady, boosting confidence and reducing the risk of a housing bubble. According to statistics from the Office for Citizenship and Migration Affairs, 2,435 foreigners applied for a residence permit based on the purchase of real estate last year alone.

The SLS data shows that the role of the Riga real estate market has always been bigger than the rest of the Latvian market. This trend has intensified in recent years. The number of real estate transactions in Riga is twice as high as in the rest of Latvia, which makes the demand for real estate in Riga quite high.

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