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Shia Getter
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Israel’s Population to Skyrocket: The Opportunity & Adversity of Growth

There’s good news and there’s also bad news. And they’re both the same: Israel’s population is growing — rapidly. Whether you live here already or you just want to live here, this growth spurt is going to affect you. In fact, it’s going to affect us all, big time.

Back when Israel was founded in 1948, there were 800,000 people living here. Now, in 2022, there are around 9.4 million people living here. The population of this tiny country has grown by a breathtaking factor of 12 in less than 75 years.

Just for comparison’s sake, the U.S. population has barely doubled in that time. And the population of the United Kingdom increased by only a third over the same period. But thanks to high birthrates and lots of aliyah, ours has blossomed. And the population is projected to keep growing.

In fact, the Central Bureau of Statistics is projecting that by 2024, Israel’s population will reach 10 million. That means that in less than two years from now, an additional 600,000 people will be living here. Wow. And, also, whoa. Where is everyone going to go?

Getting Perspective

Israel’s population growth has actually decreased in the last several years (to 1.95% in 2019, and 1.6% in 2020). Researchers suggest that Covid dead rates and a decrease in aliyah are to blame. Nonetheless, even with the decrease, Israel still has one of the most rapidly growing populations in the Western world (and the third highest in the OECD). In fact, statistics show that by 2065, Israel will be the fourth most densely populated country in the world, with an estimated 922 people per square kilometer.

To handle this influx properly, we’d need add another two Haifa-sized cities to this country in less than three years. Or, in other terms: AHHHHHHHHH!

Why Panic?

Do you like waiting in lines? Or what about sitting on hold with the __________ (bank/ kupat cholim/ post office/insert your favorite bureaucratic institution)? How do you enjoy standing on super crowded buses? Does traffic sound fun? Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but all these “delightful” pastimes are only going to get a whole lot worse — unless Israel can somehow up its game in time and whip out hospitals, classrooms, transportation, and housing, rapid-fire. And the Central Bureau of Statistics expects Israel to be home to some 15 million by the country’s centennial, in 2048, which isn’t all that far away.

When a population is growing, it’s good for the economy. It’s also good for continuity; that is, there will be a younger generation to take over essential roles as the older generation retires. But it also means that the growth of infrastructure needs to keep up with the growth of the people. We need not just the space for these people to live and the hospitals and medical clinics for them to be treated in, and the transportation networks for them to get there. We also need the professionals to plan, design, build, and staff this infrastructure, and the jobs for all these new faces.

Of course, many of these new Israelis will be babies, and they won’t need jobs, homes, or cars … yet. But they will. And they need to fit into a national picture that’s already badly in need of overhaul. Because the way things look right now, we aren’t going to be ready.

Where Do You Come In?

So, practically speaking, is there anything an individual can do for his part, to meet the onslaught bravely and with eyes open? Aside from davening that everyone will have the resources they need when they need them, anyone who hasn’t bought an apartment can go ahead and do that now, securing his future — at least property-wise.

The math supports this advice. In 2020, 52,800 new apartments were being built in Israel. At the same time, 40,026 couples got married, 15,996 were divorced, and 17,307 babies were born. All those couples needed places to live. The divorced couples needed places to move into separately. And many families needed to find larger living quarters to accommodate their new babies. And what about all the kids who just grew up and wanted to move out on their own? Those 52,800 new apartments? Even if they were ready, they weren’t enough.

A simple calculation shows that if we want to meet the target for the next 30 years, we’ve got to build about 4 million new apartments. Yes, 4 million. (That’s an average of over 130,000 new apartments per year, in case you’re wondering.) According to this calculation, we’ll need to build about 100,000 new apartments per year during the next decade (2021–2030), about 125,000 apartments during the decade after (2030–2040), and about 150,000 new apartments per year during from 2040–2050. Hashem ya’azor!

As we always note at The Getter Group, the time is now. No client has ever returned to us bemoaning their apartment purchase, wishing they had only waited several years more. What they have said is, “You told me 10 years ago I should buy in Beit Shemesh. I didn’t listen, and now I regret it.”

Yes, buying a dirah is expensive now, more expensive than ever. But prices — and population — are not going to go down. In fact, they’re going up … and fast.

If you want to buy, do it today. Let us help. Contact The Getter Group today 718.473.3950 or email baila@thegettergroup.com.

About the Author
Shia Getter is known in Israeli real estate circles for “the man with common sense.” Having moved to Israel 12 years ago, Shia understands what rough experiences many people not used to the local ways of doing business can get entangled with. His company, the Getter Group, is Jerusalem’s #1 sales and brokerage services company, and trusted source of information, ensuring clients get the right investment, covering their bases and checking that they are getting full value and security for their hard earned money.
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