Luxury apartments on Tel Aviv’s shore are in great demand, and potential buyers are willing to pay the high price tag.
In the wake of the last financial crisis, and oft-heard claim was that while some of the mega-wealthy were hurt by the crisis, many others came out of it financially stronger. Simply look at what is possibly the most expensive strip of real estate in Israel – the stretch of central Tel Aviv’s shoreline.
By this fact, the wealthy are probably wealthier. The total value of apartment sales in the area jumped from 270 million NIS in 2010 to 444 million NIS in 2012. Real estate analysts predict it will reach over 500 million in 2014.
Traditionally, the number of new housing projects has been limited. The general public – the ones who don’t aim for a seaside luxury penthouse but rather for a simple day at the beach – fight to ensure access and unobstructed views. Most of the original construction on streets close to the shore are low-rise buildings (3-4 storeys) built on relatively small plots of land. Real estate developers usually have to buy out several property owners to end up with enough land in order to build a new project. This has meant that, for many years, no more than one new luxury housing project was under construction in the area in any given year. However, there are currently two luxury housing projects marketed at the same time, the 10 Herbert Samuel and the David Promenade Residences.
While the number of transactions of high-end apartments has increased, so has the price per square meter. Today, the prices for such properties in this area has topped the 100,000 NIS a square meter in the recent developments (David Promenades – a 17th floor, 612 sq. m. apartment was recently sold for 81.5 million NIS), and anywhere between 40,000 NIS to 70,000 NIS in the older ones, like the Opera Tower or the Sea Pearl Tower. A fifth floor, 60-square meter apartment in the Opera Tower that would sell in 1992 for 215,000 USD (approx. 600,000 NIS back then), today goes for over 3 million NIS.
These drastic price jumps should be qualified by pointing out that a considerable part was due to how large projects are marketed. The closer to the move-in date, the higher their prices go. Typically, developers sell their most valuable apartments in the later stages of the project.
So when people speak of a slump in the luxury apartment market due to the global economic slowdown, it should be noted that this does not apply to Tel Aviv's golden kilometer. When the entire market is in a slowdown, the opposite is happening on Tel Aviv’s shoreline.