In 2023, developers handed over the keys to 136.5 apartments. That’s 5.2 percent. less than last year, but next year may bring even worse results. The Polish Association of Developer Companies has prepared a document in which it indicates actions that the government could take to make it easier for developers to build new apartments.
On Monday, January 22, the Central Statistical Office published the report “Housing construction in the period January – December 2023”. It shows that the number of apartments put into use last year amounted to a total of 220.4 thousand. premises, of which 62 percent were apartments built by developers.
Cooperative, municipal or social-rental construction accounted for less than 2 percent of total production.
PZFD warns against a decline in the number of apartments put into use
The Polish Association of Developer Companies estimates that in 2025 the number of new apartments handed over to buyers will not exceed 117,000 units.
-In the next three years, the Polish housing sector will experience a structural shortage of supply of new investments, which will result in fewer apartments being handed over to buyers than has been the case in the last few years. Rebuilding supply will be a long-term process, and very susceptible to economic and political factors. And it will largely depend on the actions taken by those in power whether developers will be able to efficiently launch new investments and introduce apartments for sale. – said Patryk Kozierkiewicz, expert of the Polish Association of Developer Companies.
After a disastrous year for the industry in 2022, developers failed to break the negative trend and started building over 50,000 fewer units than in 2021.
“The supply collapse would have been even greater if it were not for the fact that over the course of the year the KNF’s S recommendation regarding the calculation of creditworthiness was relaxed, the Safe Credit 2% program was introduced and the inflation level was relatively stabilized,” we read in the Association’s press release.
Developers propose solutions to the government
The Polish Association of Developer Companies argues that the biggest challenge facing the market and legislators is to ensure an adequate supply of new housing. The organization has developed a document identifying the biggest problems developers encounter in the construction process and indicating actions that the government could take to make it easier for developers to build new apartments.
One of the important areas is the unblocking of land for the construction of apartments, especially plots owned by State Treasury companies and KZN, frozen for the Mieszkanie Plus program. It is also important to postpone the entry into force of key stages of the Spatial Planning and Development Act. This includes giving local governments more time to prepare local plans.
“The most urgent action and the one that should be implemented as quickly as possible is the need to withdraw from unfavorable changes in the so-called special housing act regarding parking space indicators. As part of the amendment to the regulations in May last year, excessive parking standards were introduced, requiring the construction of 1.5 parking spaces for each apartment, regardless of the parking policy of a given commune. As a result, the regulations have made investments carried out under the Special Housing Act unprofitable, and the act that could have increased the supply of land and allowed for the transformation of degraded areas has become a dead law,” say developers’ representatives.
Cancellations slow construction
Construction law also requires changes, especially regarding unjustified appeals against building permits. According to experts, the prolonged investment process is often the result of the need to consider complaints that have no reference to reality. Therefore, a symbolic fee should be introduced and the rule should be to consider only complaints that have substantive justification.
The regulation on technical conditions, including the amendment regarding playgrounds, also requires modifications. One of the ways to reverse the negative effects of the last amendment is to abolish the obligation to locate a playground for investments in single multi-family buildings, as well as to correct other minor assumptions.