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Select European cities ranked by overall prospects in real estate 2021

Multiple factors can play a role in the decision to invest in real estate. To calculate how prosperous European cities are on the estate market, the Urban Land Institute considered transport connectivity, forecasted real estate returns, a city’s economic performance, availability of assets/opportunities for new development, market size and liquidity, regulatory environment, digital connectivity, attractiveness to talent, city leadership, housing affordability, and affordability of space for new/small/growing businesses.

Leading European cities for development and investment

According to the ranking, the leading five European cities by overall prospects for 2021 are Berlin, London, and Paris. As most important factors for selecting a European city for investment or development, industry experts outlined transport connectivity, availability of assets or new development opportunities, forecasted returns, market size and liquidity, economic performance and regulatory environment. When it comes to the issues influencing real estate professionals in their investment choices, the major concerns shared were construction costs, availability of suitable assets/land for acquisition and development, and economic growth.

Leading investment real estate sectors

In terms of investment prospects, the sectors with the highest scores were data centers, logistic facilities and life sciences. This should come as no surprise taking into consideration that the value of investment in industrial and logistic real estate in Europe has increased by more than threefold since 2012.

Select leading cities ranked by overall prospects on the real estate market in Europe in 2021

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Release date

October 2020



Survey time period


Number of respondents


Age group

18 years and older

Special properties

industry experts, including investors, fund managers, developers, property companies, lenders, brokers, advisers and consultants.

Method of interview

Face-to-face interview, online survey

Supplementary notes

* The survey was made up of respondents from twenty European countries and made up from the following professional industries. The source adds that respondents could choose more than one category, so percentages do not add up to 100. Real estate service firms (36 percent), Private property company or developer (26 percent), Fund/investment managers (21 percent), Institutional/equity investor (10 percent), publicly-listed property company or REIT (7 percent), Bank, lender or securitized lender (5 percent), homebuilder or residential developer (6 percent), real estate operators (3 percent) or other (5 percent).

Respondents scored sectors' prospects on a scale of 1=very poor to 5=excellent, and the scores for each sector are averages; the overall rank is based on the average of the sector's investment and development score.

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Statistics on "Real estate investments on the European market"

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