House Purchase by Foreigners Marks Record High in 2013

29/04/2014 – Expansion

Foreign investors represented 11.1% of all buyers who purchased a house in Spain throughout 2013. 36.600 units were acquired last year by foreigners, by 36.6% more if juxtaposed with the 26.790 dwellings purchased in 2012.

The data provided by Spanish Association of Registrars also indicates that since the beginning of the recession (2009) the appreciation was of 4.24% up to 11.15% (2013).

The Association reckons that foreign buyers constitute a spur for housing demand, especially visible over the past few quarters.

The report stresses out transformation of the purchaser´s profile. Great majority of the acquired stock corresponds to housing for holiday purpose, while before the recession foreigners would rather have bought property in Spain to stay to work.

Moreover, the “abrupt slump” in prices has become a “great opportunity” for nations less affected by the recession. Talking about nations, Britons still lead in home purchases with 15.1% of the total sales to foreigners.

They are followed by the French with 9.8%, the Russian (8.5%), the Belgian (7.26%), the German (7%), the Swedish (5,6%), the Norwegian (5.2%), the Italian (3.6%), the Algerian (3.2%) and the Chinese (3%). 

In large majority foreigners target areas with a lot of available stock, i.e. the Islands and the Mediterranean Coast. Thus, the Balearic Islands gather 30.73% of all acquistions, the Valencian Community 24.83% and the Canary Islands 24.60%. Madrid scores shy 3.8%.

Only 4.7% Sold For >500.000 Euros

On the other hand, the annual report reminds that recent changes in foreign purchasing regulation allows obtaining a permanent residence if the house price is equal to or exceeds €500.000. As the statistics show, in 2013 only 4.7% of all houses changing hands were as much expensive or more. To compare, in 2012 the percentage showed 5.2%, having in mind that the number of transaction that year was far smaller.

It is worth to mention that 42.1% of the purchases were carried out by non-residents (41.5% in 2012), whilst 57.8% were residents of Spain.

Considering the over-500.000 Euros acquistions in geographical terms, 14.3% of them incurred in the Balearic Islands, 10.8% in the Basque Country, 7.4% in Andalusia and 6.5% in Catalonia.



Original article: Expansión

Translation: AURA REE