The number of international buyers back in the Spanish listing market is rising with British people now representing almost 20% of foreign sales, new data shows.
In absolute terms, the number of purchases by foreigners is increasing to over 42,000 in a year with close to 11,000 transactions quarterly, and over 42,000 in a year.
According to figures from the Ministry of Public Works sales to foreign residents in Spain increased year on year in the latest quarter by 17.2%, the 16th quarter on a row of growth to this sector of buyers.
The nationality with the greatest volume of home purchases is the British, amounting to 19.8%, and it is suggested that this is due to the UK’s economic recovery and currency rates which give buyers more euros to the pound.
French buyers accounted for 8.1% of sales to foreigners, Germans 7.6%, Belgians 6.4%, the Swedish some 5.5% and Italians 5.3%.
But sales to Russian buyers have dropped from 9% during 2012 and 2013 to less than 4% currently, and this is likely due to the fall of the rouble and the price of oil. Asian buyers still only account for a small percentage of sales.
Quarter on quarter sales to foreign non-residents reached 17,307 while sales to foreigners who are not residents increased by 5% to 1,244 transactions.
A rise in foreign demand has also been recorded by the Association of Registrars whose latest data suggests that while there was a slight decline in the first quarter of the year, in the second quarter sales reached 12.8% of the total home transactions.
In the first half of the year, foreign home buyers accounted for between a third and a quarter of all the home purchases in some regions. For example, in the Balearic Islands, some 33.5% of all the home purchases in the second quarter were made by international buyers, while in the Canary Islands they accounted for 27.5%, and in Valencia some 25.7% of all transactions.
The regions of Murcia, Andalucía and Catalonia recorded percentages of home purchases by international buyers of between 12% and 15%, while in Madrid they accounted for only 4.7% of sales.
The data also shows that in Aragón foreigners bought 4.5% of homes, in La Rioja it was 2.8%, in Navarra 2.3%, in Asturias and Cantabria 1.9%, in Castilla-La Mancha 1.8%, in the Basque Country 1.7%, in Castilla y León 1.1%, in Galicia 0.6% and in Extremadura just 0.4%.
Meanwhile, the latest house price data suggest the housing market in stable with average national prices down by just 0.8% in the 12 months to the end of September, according to data from appraisal company Tinsa.
A second set of figures from Idealista suggests year on year listing prices fell 1.6% to a national average of €1,574 per square meter.
According to Mark Stucklin of Spanish Property Insight, these latest figures back an overall trend of stabilisation in the country’s real estate market. But he is sceptical about official figures from the government which suggest that listing prices have been increasing by as much as 5%.
However, whilst average national prices are still negative but steady, some markets are showing much stronger growth, led by Barcelona, according to the data from both Tinsa and Idealista.
Although Tinsa measures new and resale homes and Idealista’s figures are for asking prices of resale homes, both agree that house prices in Barcelona rose by 7.4% in September compared to the same time last year.
‘It may be a coincidence they both arrived at the exact same figure, but news of fast rising house prices will surprise nobody looking at the Barcelona listing market today,’ said Stucklin.
According to Idealista, asking prices in Madrid rose 4.5% to €2,824 per square meter but still 30% below the high of €4,035 in the second quarter of 2007. In Valencia asking prices rose 3.2% to €1,444, still below the high of €2,802.
Tinsa’s data shows that 10 provinces have seen prices rise year on year while 11 provinces saw prices fall by more than 5%.
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Source: Property News Spain