The Moscow market is ever changing and growing. In Soviet times, property was state-owned and people only had the right to "use" them. Apartments were distributed based on one's place of work, and the options of moving were limited. After the fall of the Soviet government, a whole new era of property ownership became available. An explosion of new growth offers more modern options, while traditional properties are still readily available. Properties with an open plan, classically decorated, furnished or unfurnished can all be found.
Moscow property prices are now among the highest in Europe, ranging from $10,700 to $20,500 US dollars per square meter. The most desirable areas of central Moscow, where the elite and foreigners live, are known as Patriarch's Ponds, Arbat, Tverskaya, Zamoskvorechye, and Ostozhenka. These are the most in demand areas and demand for property in general is strong.
For such a large purchase, is highly advisable to deal with a real estate agent. If your understanding of Russian and local laws are not perfect, there could be serious problems in the deal. Sites like www.evans.ru/salesguide/, www.intermarksavills.ru/buy/, and www.moscowcity.com/real/agents.htm offer information on buying in Moscow as well as agent listings.