Liisa Linna, a partner at Liverpool’s real estate law firm, pointed to changes in the law allowing notaries to conduct virtual transactions. “Last spring, we had stricter restrictions, and notaries almost immediately found a way to conduct online sales transactions with some changes in the law,” Ms. Linna said. “Now the restrictions are lighter and there are no restrictions on visiting the broker’s apartments, so I don’t think it would have any effect on sales activity.”
Ms Mutso said she had received a lot of inquiries from foreign buyers and those with Estonian ties living abroad who wanted to return home. “I know the numbers show that we bought fewer foreigners,” she said, “but I had more questions and requests than usual, perhaps because people have moved all over Europe and Estonia is in a good location. “
Most foreign home buyers in Estonia are looking for homes in the center of Tallinn, especially in its 13th-century Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as well as in the city’s new development and seaside luxury complexes, brokers said. The market in Tallinn, a city with a population of approximately 440,000, saw a year-on-year increase in apartment sales by 8.6 percent to 2,056 euros per square meter ($ 232 per square meter), Teslon said as apartment sales fell by more than 9 percent.
Many Tallinn residents also have summer houses outside the capital – often in recreational areas such as Parnu or Haapsalu or on the island of Saaremaa – which tend to attract foreign buyers, brokers said. In Parn, the average price of a house is about 1,100 euros per square meter ($ 124 per square foot), which is about half the price in Tallinn.