The fourth quarter of 2012 and the first of 2013 performance data were unusual as the potential house buyers knew the tax incentive on property purchase was set to disappear in January 2013. For this reason, statistics for the Q1 2013 could not be worse in history in terms of sales.
Now, a year later when the economic circumstances are more favourable and banks start lending again, every improvement in transaction number hits two digits.
According to the Ministry of Development report, the over 80.000 houses sold represent a 48.4% upsurge if the number compared to the first quarter of 2013. In turn, when the last 12 months (April 2013 – March 2014) compared with one another, the increase is also significant (8.8%).
The sales performance is believed to go up provided that the present situation in the sector persists. Moreover, one must remember that the first quarter of the year always registers less transactions than the following quarters bring.
Over the last 12 months, three regions have seen jumps in sales: the Canaries, Madrid and Catalonia with +13.9%, +4.2% and +1.7% respectively. Also, purchases in Ceuta and Melilla advanced by 2.4%.
Among the capitals and big cities inhabited by over 100.000 people, the best performed Marbella (37.5%), Huesca (36.8%), San Sebastián (25.9%), Madrid (24.7%), Barcelona (23.5%) and Ceuta (18.8%), whereas Vitoria (-52%), Cuenca (-47,4%), Soria (-46%), Getafe (-45,6%) and Leganés (-44%) absolutely underperformed in comparison to last year.
If it comes to the buyer´s profile, foreign investors keep their lead in the transaction volume. Residents purchased 12.787 properties, by 52.6% more than in Q1 2013, while non-residents finalized 858 transactions, by 9% less than last year. Altogether, residents and non-residents dominated 13.645 sales, around 16.8% of the total. Alicante (3.191 transactions), Malaga (1.853), Barcelona (1.150), Tenerife (1.021) and Madrid (784) were the top picks.