In Georgia, the real estate industry accounts for 12% of GDP, which explains the Georgian government’s interest and support of the sector over the previous decade, which has shown to be rather productive.
Tbilisi is a highly urbanized residential city where its population is gradually growing as it continues to expand. While the average household size in the EU is 2.3 people, the typical household in Georgia is 3.3. Although this figure is somewhat higher in comparison, it is anticipated to approach the European standard in the future, resulting in an increase in demand for residential real estate. As a result, restoring historic districts and expanding their infrastructure has become a top goal for Tbilisi, a city steeped in history. In addition to the domestic demand, Georgia hosts over 8 million international visitors annually and is a major tourism destination hub in the region. Numerous global hotel brands have entered the country, including Sheraton, Hilton, Radisson, Marriot, Le Meridien, and Best Western. The wealth of flora and wildlife, unique cuisine, and safe environment enable the development of nearly all forms of tourism, including eco-tourism, mining, skiing, Maritime Tourism, Rural Tourism, MICE Tourism, Culinary Tourism, Gambling and Extreme Tourism, and Cultural Tourism. Each year, festivals and concerts featuring worldwide stars are being held. The state has identified tourism as a key sector of the economy, and substantial resources are spent globally to build innovative tourism products and promote the country. Due to the economic interdependence between the real estate market and tourism, demand for and hence the value of investments made in Georgia continues to grow year after year. Although the pandemic crisis has exacerbated the situation, Georgia continues to hold a leading position among investors, thanks to the Free Trade Agreement, high returns on investment, simplified residence permit procedures, a flexible tax system, and fairly straightforward real estate ownership legislation, all of which make it easier for businesses to invest in Georgia. Every year, the necessity of an ecologically sound environment and energy efficiency grows. When it comes to its Georgian projects, York Towers adheres to these criteria. These projects include York Town in Tabakhmela, Lisi View, and Bazaleti Resort, all of which are in close proximity to Tbilisi. The firm has a total land holding of more than 2.5 million square meters. In spring, the company is initiating another large-scale construction now in Batumi by the seaside that is expected to serve as York Towers’ flagship project on the Black Sea. Mr. Amr Alabwaz, CEO of York Towers, discusses the return on investment on rental real estate in Tbilisi that is attracting foreign interest, particularly from the Middle East. “It’s basic economics. Increased demand and a scarcity of supply provide an ideal environment for high profits. When you factor in the comparatively low purchase pricing for property in Tbilisi, you’re looking at some extraordinarily high rental returns (ROI). For the right property in the right place marketed in the right way, you can be looking at Gross Rental Yields of up to 15%.” – As Mr. Alabwaz puts it. Mr. Alabwaz estimates that real estate values in Tbilisi grew by 8% over the previous two years, despite the Covid-19 epidemic and a brief decline in prices in 2020. What’s more, this occurred in dollar terms.
The prices have gone up by 34% in GEL.Apart from the Rental cashflow, property appreciation has to be taken into account. Tbilisi offers high capital gains potential. “The majority of people are aware that when something appears to be too good to be true, it almost always is. There are, of course, exceptions to every rule — this is Georgia. At York Towers, we specialize in such exceptions; we provide our clients with access to the Georgian rental investment market – an opportunity for investors to purchase prime Tbilisi real estate at affordable, pre-lauch prices, allowing them to earn a 45 percent return on investment (ROI) within 18 months solely on property appreciation,” the CEO explains. What’s more, there are no restrictions on international buyers. While other countries make it difficult for foreigners to purchase real estate, Georgia does not. Buyers can purchase property in full freehold ownership on the same terms as domestic Georgian buyers. The property registration process is very simple and quick. A property may be acquired in a matter of hours. Indeed, this is demonstrated by the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business report, which puts Georgia seventh in terms of ease of doing business and fifth in terms of property registration. Registration of a property in Georgia is just GEL 50-200 ($20-$80), depending on the speed with which you want it done. There is no Stamp Duty or equivalent to pay, which eliminates the hidden expenses associated with property ownership in the majority of other countries. Land taxes range from 0% to 1% depending on income, whereas income taxes rental earnings are taxed at a rate of 4.5 percent on residential property. As Mr. Amr Alabwaz puts it, “By investing in Tbilisi real estate now, you will be among the first wave of real estate investors to open the gates to Georgia and seize the unique prospects.” These chances, however, are not likely to remain hidden indefinitely. And when the rest of the wakes up to the potential of Tbilisi real estate, prices will soar. Fast. As a result, ‘early adopters’ hitting the market now may anticipate significant cash gains as the price of their property rises substantially.”