The purchase of properties continues descending – an annual 6,8% in the third quarter of 2013 – but not as much as it was expected. The cause: foreigners are chasing for bargains, mainly in the Mediterranean coast, with an excess of properties after the bubble burst.
The transactions carried out by foreigners reached 12.070, 25,5% more than the 9.614 in the same quarter of the previous year. The foreign investors have 17,2% of the market in their hands (in the third quarter the number of transactions reached 70.196 properties). A new historic record.
As always, the foreigners residing in Spain are the ones who usually acquire these properties, but the number of non-residents is growing. Both groups registered annual increases for the ninth month in a row. The residents registered an increase of 24,7% opposite to the third quarter of 2012 (10.960 acquisitions). And the non-residents bought 1.110, 34,6% more than one year before.
Also, foreign investors acquire properties which are 15,5% more expensive than the average. Specifically, 153.437 Euros, opposite to the average 132.970 Euros. That is, 20.650 Euros more than the average.
Beatriz Toribio, in charge of Studies at fotocasa.es, believes that “right now only those foreign investors searching for good opportunities at low prices are buying”. But this “should not lead to euphoria, as the sector will not recover only thanks to the foreign demand”, she adds.
Manuel Gandarias, director of Studies at pisos.com, delves further into the idea: “The fact that those economies in better shape than the Spanish one decide to invest in our real estate market is positive for the sector, as this means a boost in confidence, but the ideal scenario would be one where Spanish families would also participate in this process”.
How? Toribio believes that “tax benefits on the acquisition and less taxes are needed, but above all Spaniards should feel that there is an improvement in the economy”. Gandarias adds that it is vital that “financing reaches the society, not only for companies but also for those individuals who wish to buy”. Without this and without a descent in the unemployment rate, there will not be a real estate recovery. (…)