Swedbank: In the fourth quarter of 2018, the housing affordability index (HAI) increased in all Baltic capitals on annual basis

    • SwedbankIn Tallinn, the HAI rose by 10.4 points to 161.9 as rapid wage growth outweighed growing apartment prices and interest rates.
    • In Riga, the HAI improved by 12 points to 191.7 as wage growth outpaced apartment price growth. For new-project and renovated apartments, the HAI increased by 15.2 points to 146.0.
    • In Vilnius, the HAI increased by 7 points to a record high of 136.9 as strong wage growth compensated for rising mortgage interest rates.

The housing affordability index (HAI) is calculated for a family whose income is equal to 1.5 of average net wages with an average-sized apartment of 55 square meters. The HAI is 100 when households use 30% of their net wages for mortgage costs. When the HAI is at least 100, households can afford their housing, according to the established norm. The higher the index, the greater the affordability.

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