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"Peak" in the suit? Khabarovsk expert on the prospects of the housing construction market
The authorities of the Khabarovsk Territory set themselves the goal of building a million square meters of housing per year. Is it really that much to build? How is the Pik Group of Companies similar to McDonald's? Are local developers afraid of its arrival, and will a square meter fall in price if large-scale construction starts?
An expert, former Minister of Construction, Industry and Transport of the Khabarovsk Territory, Advisor to the Director of LLC NW Housing Construction Fund, Konstantin Pepelyaev, answered EastRussia's questions.
- How would you describe the current situation in the industry in the Khabarovsk Territory? Is it stagnating, is it in a fever, is there a struggle for orders, for land?
- I would say that there is a positive expectation. For various reasons, the construction industry has been in limbo for a long time, including due to the change of governors and their teams. The bankrupt Dalspetsstroy, the largest player on the market, has not built a single square meter since 2014. Only now they finished their debts, incomplete work last year under active pressure from the prosecutor's office and the authorities.
Since about the middle of last year, the surge in demand has devastated the secondary market. It was stimulated by a cheap mortgage - not only from the Far East, and by the fact that regional programs for the construction and provision of certain categories of citizens with housing failed. Prices in the secondary market have skyrocketed so that they are now almost on par with prices for new buildings. And in order to cool the market overheated by unsecured demand, it is necessary to build today. We need to build a lot, we need to build quickly, and therefore I would call the situation a positive expectation of new opportunities.
- This year in the region it is planned to commission housing in the amount of 317 thousand square meters. m., which is 38% more than in 2020. At the same time, for several years in a row the region did not fulfill the planned indicators. What is the reason and is there any reason to believe that they will be achieved this year?
- Previously, we - the Khabarovsk Territory - made 350 thousand square meters annually. meters of housing without straining. The tension was in 2014, when it was necessary to build housing for victims of the floods of 2013, then something about 480 thousand square meters was commissioned. meters. That is 350 ... up to 400 thousand square meters. meters it was such a stable level for the Khabarovsk Territory. Although even under Vyacheslav Shport (Governor of the Khabarovsk Territory 2009-2018), the idea of building a million square meters was voiced, even then there were many questions about the implementation of this message. By and large, this is an elusive dream. Now we do not have in the Khabarovsk Territory, first of all, a purchasing resource for such a volume of housing. The market is demand driven. Today we have a weighted average price per square meter of 105-110 thousand rubles. Now multiply by a million - how many billions will it be? Does the population have so much money? And if it is not bought, then there is a collapse and the industry collapses. Money is not returned to developers, developers, they go bankrupt and that's it. In our European part of Russia, somewhere in 2015, there was such a collapse, when they set up a bunch of houses - 84 - 86 million square meters. meters - and the market collapsed. Thousands of square meters, hundreds of houses were empty, unsold.
- But then the mortgage was expensive ...
- Yes, then mortgages were expensive, now there are tools aimed at improving the quality of life of the Far East, including cheap housing loans. Still, the volume of a million square meters is rather a dream for the market of the Khabarovsk Territory.
- And how many large construction companies are operating in the region today?
- We need to look at the objects ... According to my estimates, now, perhaps, we have five of the largest developers with resources. In the first place is the Housing Construction Fund, but not the Fund itself, but the "Specialized Developer of the Housing Construction Fund" now their main project is the residential complex "Berezki". There will be 17 houses, about 120 thousand square meters. meters. Last year they started this work, built the first house and laid four more in parallel. This year it is planned to commission at least 43.0 thousand square meters. The Housing Construction Fund (FZhS) is ready to build in blocks, it has a reinforced concrete plant, a production of construction accessories, specialized contractors, and designers.
Further, it is the "Specialized developer" Perspektiva "- they" plan "five houses of different heights from 9 to 26 - this is the residential complex" Vershiny "within the boundaries of Shatova-Sovkhoznaya-Trekhgornaya streets in the Zheleznodorozhny district of Khabarovsk, I repeat" in the plans ".
Then I would call the group of companies "UIP" - "Management of investment programs" - they are building "Petroglyph Park", "East Park", "South Park" - this is the developer Yurchenko. He builds a lot with such small complexes - three to four houses. Then GC "Enka" - they have a complex "U-City". And I would also call the group of companies “YES! Development "- they have a residential complex" Culture ". These are all companies that build large houses, large areas. Now the Siberian company "Talan" has come to us - they are actively buying out land and successfully building houses.
TOP developers by the volume of current housing construction in the Khabarovsk Territory for April 2021
If you still give examples, then you need to mention the Kereng construction holding - a 30-storey apartment building in the Richeville-Sky RC, Stroymetall GC - they have Nadezhda RC across Alekseevskaya, Bask GC are building Leningradsky RC - 22 storey building in the center of Khabarovsk, between the NK City shopping center and the Platinum Arena ice palace, and GradService. Well, the arrival of a federal-scale player, the Peak group, has been announced.
- And here I would like to get more details - do you know the details, when it comes, what does the "Peak" come with? Do you have a feeling that the "Peak" is about to come and that difficult times will come for local developers, because they will crush the scale?
- You know, Peak is like McDonald's. They go to all major cities where there is money and this money is pumped. The fact that they will build cheaply is absurd. This is not why they come here. In principle, we do not mind. Because any business has a right to exist, everything is determined by competitiveness, but competition should be built in an absolutely equal and transparent environment. Conditions like theirs must be provided for all players in the market. Here the main question is, again, in the land - the "Peak" has no land. That is, such a land on which one could immediately build - with communications, with networks. They give them land, but without infrastructure, but it still needs to be taken somewhere, infrastructure. And the question is whether they will receive preferences in the form that the infrastructure will be built at the expense of local budgets, and they will already begin to work according to their own scheme.
Now, for example, a normative act is being prepared for adoption, which stipulates that those who built, for example, no less than 500 thousand square meters last year, will have preferences in tenders for land on which it is possible to build. The federal structure will easily show such a volume, but the local ones are immediately cut off. This mechanism does not work yet, they tried to do so, but our business opposed it, made a remark to the government of the Khabarovsk Territory that this is unacceptable. It turns out such segregation, although everyone should have equal conditions.
- So you are not afraid of the arrival of the "Peak"? That he will take your "piece of the pie"?
- We are not afraid, because we ourselves can create the infrastructure. And "Peak" does not have such a task. I think that in the basket of their financial expenses there is no such task, to create an infrastructure here. They come to the finished one, or to the one that someone is ready to make. Another important point is that in order to build, productive forces are needed, that is, enterprises and people. This is now nothing, it means either to buy at a high price - that's how he came to Talan, bought people at a high price, people came to him, but this all affects the final price of the product. Today we sell 80-83 thousand rubles per square meter, and Talan - 160, however, they sell closer to the center, and we are in a new microdistrict, and they say that they have a premium class. How much will Peak sell? What are they going to build from, on what production base? When everything works, they will build quickly, they have an industrial doctrine, the maximum readiness of the so-called "semi-finished product" - their sections should already be equipped with radiators, double-glazed windows, with some part of the wiring, and all this is assembled without "wet" processes. This is almost the same as our large-panel housing construction. Once we assembled the contour, covered it, insulated ourselves - also with a minimum of "wet" processes. Everything is done at the factory, everything is done according to GOSTs.
When "Peak" will come here - to the Khabarovsk Territory - it is not yet clear. They came to Primorye, bought several sites in Vladivostok. What and how will be here ... we'll see. If we are talking about the same “million square meters per year”, then there will be enough space for everyone. We can give 100 thousand square meters. meters per year, and this is an impressive figure for our region. Our production facilities won't allow us anymore. If we want to build more, we need to create more, and this is not fast. Plus, people should work there, specialists who need to be trained, etc. And "Pik", I repeat, will have to either buy production facilities, or create their own. Therefore, he will not build cheaper than us, I am saying this for sure! They simply will not succeed, despite the fact that they will have to invest a lot at the initial stage, organize the process, and everything is already working for us. Therefore, this year they will not start building - this is 100%, I think that next year is not visible either.
- Already this year, the implementation of the Far Eastern Quarter program should begin, which implies a large-scale complex development. One of the first projects within its framework is planned in the territory of Khabarovsk. On a land plot with an area of 83 hectares, it is planned to build a residential microdistrict with a total area of 330 thousand square meters. m. And there is an opinion that such large projects can only be done by such large developers as the Pik group. Do you agree with this? What construction organizations from among those already present on the market of the Khabarovsk Territory would be able to build "DV-quarters"?
- Our project, which we launched last year, our industrial construction program implies this. Therefore, "Far Eastern Quarters" is what we are already doing, what we have come up with - industrial development of housing construction on large areas through integrated development of territories - with all engineering and social infrastructure. Here is our complex "Berezki" - there are 120 thousand square meters of housing so far only with a kindergarten, but when we go further, there are schools and a polyclinic.
- And besides you, someone else is ready to build this way - in blocks?
- Now right away, at high speed, to 60-90, say, thousands of squares? So far, I think, no one is ready today. However, one of the developers is preparing - Specialized Developer Perspektiva LLC, he began to build production facilities, and he has something of about 69 hectares of land, but it is still empty - without networks.
- What do you have to import from building materials to the Far East?
- We now have no glass, no polymers - various plastics, no aluminum structures, stained glass groups, entrance lobbies - we are bringing all this from Tatarstan, the European part of the Russian Federation, we have no cable products, elevators, power plants, all imported ceramics and paints. We produce cements and fittings here, but even then - “thin-gauge” has to be transported from Siberia.
- And who will build? After all, the shortage of imported labor has not been resolved?
- Yes, it has not yet been decided, Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin said that the scheme of a simplified delivery option is being worked out now with the obligatory vaccination of all arrivals, but I think that the workers brought under this scheme will most likely be sent to large federal construction projects - to BAM, to Central Russia. In addition, I would note the lack of an educated middle management - foremen, foremen, highly qualified workers. There is a shortage of qualified performers - concrete workers, reinforcement workers. Imported labor partly solves this problem, but imported labor is expensive. It is generally accepted that all these Central Asian workers are worth a penny. Nothing like this. But at the same time, it is very difficult to find a qualified worker among workers from Central Asia. The price tag for a person who knows how to work, for example, with facing bricks, is very high now.
- And finally, the question that we have already partly touched on - is the scenario real, and what should happen for a square meter in the Khabarovsk Territory to fall in price? According to statistics, we see that the price for 1 sq. m in the primary housing market of the Khabarovsk Territory in the first quarter of 2020 amounted to 78,2 thousand rubles (from 59 to 110 thousand rubles), in the first quarter of 2021 - 100,7 thousand rubles (from 78 to 180 thousand rubles) , the growth was 28,8%. But it was built a little, will prices fall if large-scale construction begins?
- Not. Will not fall. Look, a square meter is traded in a conditional corridor of its segments. Here is the “standard” segment - and today we have it 80 thousand rubles. We - "Specialized developer" Housing Construction Fund "- build housing according to this standard. Nobody builds below, only if it is not some kind of" hut "- without a normal sewage system, where everything is poured. But there is a" standard ", and we we offer for 80. And then - only upwards. Here is "Talan", what they say: "160 thousand, but we have a premium class." And there is even more expensive - "smart" houses, etc. But the main thing is the cost price construction, which includes: the price of land, the cost of building materials, the cost of work, machinery and equipment, overhead costs, banking services, the cost of technical connections, etc. And none of this is getting cheaper.
Today, the construction policy has changed through the participation of citizens - escrow accounts have appeared. The developer no longer receives real money from citizens - buyers, the bank receives it. Escrow accounts are a guarantee of the safety of citizens' funds. It costs citizens an additional 8-12%. This is the starting rate for the cost of a bank loan for a developer. Another important condition is the level of project marginality. If it does not cover the possible risks of the bank, then the bank will deny you credit resources. All this taken together directly affects the final cost per square meter. Those. even if you build in blocks or kilometers, the price per square meter as a whole will not decrease. The volume of new housing in each segment can be adjusted. Well, for example, to build more housing of the "standard" class, thus increasing the market share of this product and, accordingly, ensuring its availability for a larger number of buyers.