Housing Affordability in Russia
Given Russia’s public policy of increasing affordable housing, this study estimates its achievements. It highlights future obstacles and argues for modernization. Statistical estimates of housing affordability indicators in Russia generally and in major Russian metropolitan areas specifically show trends of substantial increase for the past 15 years. Although the housing affordability indicators are imperfect measures of actual levels, they are useful for monitoring trends. The affordability indicator trend in Russia differs from similar indicators for other countries. The main influencing factors for growth in housing affordability in Russia include a reduction in real housing prices, which declined faster than per capita real income, and a decrease in mortgage interest rates. Moreover, market housing pricing is influenced by housing supply. Nonetheless, extending the potential of housing affordability through lower interest rates has been largely exhausted, and further housing affordability may be achieved by increasing the stock and tenure types of affordable housing, including affordable renting.