Foreign Investors & Discounts Trigger Property Sales

14/05/2014 – Cinco Dias

Neither it is a mistake, nor senseless gobbledygook of Spain´s National Institute of Statistics (or INE by its Spanish acronym) which publishes data showing an annual slump of 27.6% and 30 days later it claims there have been a considerable jump of 22.8%, the first recorded after 10 consecutive months of drop-off. Why the sudden upturn?

First of all, one shall learn from where the INE takes the information. It bases mostly on the Property Registry transaction records which sometimes temporarily shows slight shifts during one or two months. Therefore, the March data still corresponds to the January statistics which in turn were compared to January 2013, just when the tax incentive for property purchase was cancelled.

Consequently, from now on, we will obtain data proceeding only from months deprived from the tax relief.

One should take into account that the information provided by the notaries does not reflect the temporal shift but also has been showing gradual growth in number of transactions for many more recent months.

Last month 27.047 houses were sold, by 5.2% more than the previous month and by 22.8% more than in March 2013. It is worth to mention that in 2013 Easter was celebrated in March, whilst this year in April and that might have influenced the data as less working days means less transactions. In terms of accumulated sales, the figures still show an abrupt dip-down in January and February as the slump hits 14.4% if compared to the first quarter of 2013.

But here we go again, the data is impacted by the flourishing sales at the end of 2012.

Be as it may, certainly we observe fresh traces of stabilization. Moreover, speaking of house types, new homes sold 8.7% more, whereas the pre-owned dwellings (that represent 58.1% of the whole market) advanced 35.5% in regard to March 2013.

Another clue is that all Spanish regions see an improvement in their books, except for the five territories where the housing stock persists: Rioja, Aragon, Galicia, Castille and León and Asturias.

Two factors enhanced better sales: optimistic outlook for the economy and the house price slash.

According to Tinsa´s April report, dwellings values will depreciate more, less sharply though. To illustrate, January brought a 7.2% decline, while April 4.7%. Still, if accumulated decrease taken into consideration, houses have cheapened by 40.1% since 2017. The significant discount calls great interest from the part of foreigners whose purchases increased from 6% to 16% of the total.


Original article: Cinco Días (by Raquel Díaz Guijarro)

Translation: AURA REE