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Here you will find news, views, events and information relating to real-estate in Spain.

British Still Most Numerous Foreign Buyers

Brits still dominate sales to foreign buyers
British buyers still dominate sales to foreign buyers

Brits still dominate sales to foreign buyers

The sale of property to foreign buyers fell by 3.2% in the first half of 2019. Non-resident foreign buyers accounted for 41% of those transactions, a fall of 9.7%. Resident foreign buyers accounted for 59%, representing an increase of 1.9%, according to data from the General Council of Notaries.

Purchases by foreign buyers varied greatly across autonomous communities. The most pronounced fall occurred in the Canary Islands with a 20.1% fall, and the Balearic Islands where sales to foreign buyers fell 13.7%. Falls were also seen in Aragon (-5.8%), and Madrid (-8.1%)

The most notable increases were seen in Cantabria (+47.6%), Asturias (+41.1%), and Galicia (+17.1%). However, most of the inland communities showed very high growth, reaching double digits in Castilla y León (31.0%), Extremadura (22.9%) and Castilla-La Mancha (20.4%).

Sales to foreigners in the Mediterranean coasts was uneven, registering increases in Murcia (9.6%) and Catalonia (7.8%) and falls in the Valencian Community (-4.6%) and Andalusia (-5.7%).

Sales to foreign buyers accounted for 18.6% of the total sales nationwide. This was exceeded in the Valencian Community (36%), the Canary Islands (35.3%), the Balearic Islands (34.3%), and Murcia (28.5 %).

Nationalities and Prices

The British remained as the foreign buyers with the greater proportion of sales accounting for 12.9%. The increase in the number of buyers from Morocco (21.4%), Argentina (12.7%) and the USA (11.3%) stands out. The most notable falls were buyers from Portugal (-8.6%), Ireland (-7.3%) and Italy (-1.3%).

Despite obvious Brexit worries, Brits still made up a large proportion in many communities. In Andalucia, British buyers accounted for 25% of sales to non-resident foreign buyers. In Murica, they accounted for over half (53%), while in Valencia Brits accounted for 19%.  On the Balearic Islands, British buyers made up 16% of non-resident foreign buyers. They even got noticed in Northern Spain accounting for 10% in Asturias, 9% in Cantabria and 13% in Navarra.

The average price per square meter of operations carried out by foreigners grew 2.5% year-on-year. This growth was higher for non-residents (5.8%) than for residents (1.3%) and a higher price is maintained for the former (€2,099 versus €1,428 p/m²). The price evolution was triggered by Autonomous Communities: prices soared in Cantabria (17.2%) and decreased in Extremadura (-22.8%), Asturias (-14.7%), La Rioja (-13. 0%) and Aragon (-12.0%).

The majority of foreigners who buy a property go to a notary for the legal control they perform and the legal security provided by the public deed.

 

Property Market Stable in September

Property Market Stable in September
Housing Market Stable in September

New apartment sales increased in September

There was 42,538 property sales/purchases in September, according to data from the General Council of Notaries. On the annual rate this figure is unchanged from the previous year. When compared to August the monthly variation is a fall of 4.8%.

By type of housing, the sale of apartments showed a slight decrease of 1.2%. This was exclusively due to a fall in the number of sales of second-hand apartments (-1.3%), as new apartment sales increased by 0.2%. The sale of single-family homes increased year-on-year by 4.3%.

In terms of average prices, a square metre of housing purchased in September reached 1,444 euros, reflecting a year-on-year decrease of 1%. This fall in prices was due to the decrease in the price of a single-family home (-3.6% year-on-year) as the average price of apartments grew slightly with a 0.8% increase.

The average price of second-hand homes stood at €1,612 per square metre (+1.0% year-on-year), while the price of new property stood at €2,117 per square metre (-0.6% year-on-year).

Finally, in September the purchase and sale of other types of property stood at 9,283 operations (-6.1% year-on-year), of which 39.2% corresponded to land or plots. The average price per square meter of these transactions was €329 (40.7% year-on-year).

Mortgages

In September there were 27,591 new mortgages approved in Spain, which represents an increase of 4.8%, year-on-year. The average amount of those loans was €171,884, reflecting an annual fall of 2.1%.

Looking only at loans taken for the acquisition of a property, there was a 10% increase in new loans to 22,528. This was due both to the increase in the granting of loans for the purchase of a home (10.2% year-on-year) and the increase in mortgage loans for the acquisition of other real estate (7.7% year-on-year).

In the case of housing, the average capital borrowed was €136,981, reflecting a decrease of 4.7% year-on-year, and for the other types of real estate the average loan reached €284,014 (36.6% year-on-year).

Loans destined for construction showed an interannual increase of 7.2% in September, to 520 operations. The average amount borrowed in these cases was €386,925, thus showing a strong year-on-year fall of -37.0%. On the other hand, the average amount of loans for the construction of a house fell 42.6% to €229,061 (416 operations).

Finally, the percentage of home purchases financed by a mortgage loan stood at 49.5%. In addition, in this type of purchases with financing, the average loan-to-value was 74.9%.

 

House Prices Continue to Rise in October

House prices continue to grow across Spain
Second-hand housing prices continue to grow across Spain

House prices continue to grow across Spain

The price of second-hand property in Spain increased by 0.1% in October, when compared to September. On a year-on-year basis the increase was 2.4%. This change brings the average cost per square metre to 1,892 euros, according to the fotocasa real estate index. This is the fifth consecutive October to show an annual increase. The national average price is a staggering 37% below the average in Madrid, where the cost per square metre is 3,013 euros.

The price of second-hand housing in Spain is moderating and the proof of this is the interannual variations. Everything indicates we are seeing the last of the large annual increases. However, in communities such as Madrid, the Canary Islands and the Balearic Islands, prices continue to rise more strongly than in other communities where we are seeing more moderate increases or even slight falls in the price of used housing,” explained Ismael Kardoudi, Director of Studies and Training at Fotocasa.

In October, the most expensive autonomous communities in which to buy second-hand housing were Madrid and the Basque Country, with an average cost per square metre of €3,015 and €2,798, respectively.

Of the 50 provinces included in the data, 28 saw prices increase in October. The largest increase was seen in Soria at 2%. Increases were also seen in Huelva (1.4%), Santa Cruz de Tenerife (1.3%), Bizkaia (0.9%), Burgos (0.7%), Guadalajara (0.6%), Huesca (0.5%), A Coruña (0.4%), Segovia (0.4%), Seville (0.4%), Salamanca (0.4%), Ávila (0.4%), Cádiz (0.4%) and Alicante (0.3%), among others.

As for the price per square meter in October, only two provinces exceed the €3,000 p/m² barrier and are Gipuzkoa (€3,035 p/m²) and Madrid (€ 3,013 p/m²).

Prices up in 30 provincial capitals

The province capital with the biggest increase in October was Huelva with 2.4%. This was followed by increases in Huesca (1.9%), Bilbao (1.6%), Soria (1.5%), Cádiz (0.7%), Lleida (0.7%), Murcia (0.5%), Santa Cruz de Tenerife (0.5%), Jaén (0.5%), Valladolid (0.5%), Granada (0.4%), Albacete (0.4%), Malaga (0.3%) and Zaragoza (0.3%), among others.

As for the price per square meter in October, we see that only two provincial capitals had prices above €4,000 p/m² and are Barcelona capital (€4,437 p/m²) and Donostia – San Sebastián (€5,192 p/m²).

The average price of second-hand housing fell in 51% of the cities analysed. The four cities with double-digit declines are the cities of El Alamo (-16.8%), Olías del Rey (-14.8%), Mengíbar (-10.8%) and L’Olleria (-10.1% ). Meanwhile, the most pronounced increase was experienced by Yuncler (22%) in Toledo, followed by Villanueva del Río Segura in Murcia (12.1%).

As for the price per square meter in October, only two cities exceed the €5,000 p/m² barrier and are Eivissa (€5,262 p/m²) and Donostia – San Sebastián (€5,192 p/m²).

 

Housing Market Will Continue to Grow

Housing Market Will Continue to Grow
Housing and Mortgage Market Will Continue to Grow

2019 set to close with similar figures to 2018

Mortgage data released by the INE suggests a significant slowdown in lending from banks for the purchase of a home. Specifically, the number of loans granted in August was down 29.9% when compared to August of the previous year. A little over 20,000 new mortgages were approved which is the lowest monthly figure since October 2016.

However, it isn’t all bad news. A report from fotocasa suggests that “the fall is characteristic of the season following the summer months and the normalisation that the real estate market is experiencing. Additionally, new mortgage laws that came into force in June are affecting the figures and in many cases has mean a delay in the granting of requested loans.”

Although it is true that the property market is going through a deceleration process, everything still indicates that 2019 will close with figures very similar to those of 2018, with around 345,000 mortgages registered throughout the year and the lower figures in the back end of the year are normal. The housing market will continue to grow, although at a slower pace than in recent years.

The fotocasa report suggests “we are witnessing a moderation in the growth of the real estate market which was correctly predicted for 2019. What remains to be seen is whether this process will be more or less intense due to the evolution of the economy, the political uncertainty and the latest legislative changes.”

While the number of new loans may have dropped, the average amount borrowed increased by 7.4%, to reach 155,619 euros. However, the total borrowed was significantly lower at 2,619.5 million euros, a fall of 26.4%.

Mortgages by Autonomous Community

The communities with the highest number of mortgages taken for the purchase of a home in August are Andalucía (3,924), Cataluña (3,607) Madrid (3,208).

Borrowed capital reached its highest levels in Madrid (589.1 million euros), Catalonia (507.4 million) and Andalusia (438.5 million).

All communities showed negative annual variations in the amount of borrowed capital, except Valencia (+0.2%). The smallest decreases occur in Aragon (–8.2%) and Catalonia (–15.2%). The largest were in La Rioja (–64.6%) and Extremadura (–56.1%).

All communities recorded negative annual rates on the number of home mortgages taken in August.

The smallest of these decreases were in Valencia (–9.1%), Catalonia (–19.4%) and Murcia (–20.2%). On the other hand, La Rioja (–61.5%), Extremadura (–53.8%) and Navarra (–52.9%) registered the greatest decreases.

 

Málaga Airport Records Busiest Ever September

The skies over Malaga were busy in September
The skies over Malaga were busy in September

The skies over Malaga were busy in September

For the first time in its 100 year history, Malaga airport saw more than 2 million passengers pass through in September. In fact, 2,026,920 travellers used the airport, an increase of 2.4% compared to the same month last year making it the busiest September ever. The increase in passengers was seen in both the international and domestic market according to airport operator AENA.

The bulk of the passengers travelled on commercial flights and 1.7 million were travelling on international flights, a 1.7% increase in overseas passenger numbers when compared to September 2018. The number of international flights increased by 1.1% to reach 11,222 take-offs/landings.

A little over a quarter of a million passengers travelled between Malaga and other Spanish airports, showing an increase of 6.4% when compared to September last year. Similarly, the number of domestic flights increased by 9.1% to 2,502 operations.

In terms of flight operations, Malaga-Costa del Sol Airport served 14,038 flights in September (13,724 were commercial), 1.7% more than in the same dates of 2018.

On the first Sunday of the month the airport saw the most traffic, reaching 506 landings and take-offs. The peak day for passenger numbers was on Saturday 14, with the influx of 74,539 travellers.

Brits Still Love Malaga

The UK remained as the main destination with the highest number of passengers either coming from or going to the UK. 639,037 people travelled between Spain and the UK in September. German travellers numbered 159,632, while 132,515 French passengers passed through Malaga.

Turismo Costa del Sol presented figures showing that British tourists spent an average of 8.4 days in Malaga province and on average they spent €100 per day while here.

The study further suggested the favourite activities of British tourists include the beach (no surprise there!), hiking, visiting monuments and dining out.

When asked, the average British tourists scored the region 9 out of 10. Three out of four also said they will return to the Costa del Sol. 99% said they would recommend the province to friends and family.

Year-to-Date

The statistics in September contributed to the airport consolidating a positive balance in the first nine months of the year, as the number of passengers accumulated since January rose to 15,676,525, representing an increase of 5.2% compared to the same period of 2018.

Of the 15,635,200 commercial passengers counted, 2,260,957 travelled on flights between national destinations (+9.3%) and 13,374,243 did so on international connections (+4.7%).

With regard to operations, the airport registered 113,741 flights between January and September (110,258 of them commercial), a 3.9% increase.