Ministry Of Development: House Sales Return To 2008 Levels

9 June 2017 – El Mundo

After the storm always comes the calm. The same is true in the residential real estate market. During the first quarter of 2017, house sales returned to levels not seen since 2008. According to transaction statistics from the Ministry of Development, between January and March, 122,787 operations were completed, up by 18.5% compared to the same period in 2016. To find a higher figure during the first quarter of the year, we have to go back to 2008 (159,088).

Of the total number of operations, only 10,771 related to new builds, which accounted for 8.8% of the total. Meanwhile, second-hand properties (112,016) accounted for 91.2%. This data shows once again that the segment of second-hand homes is consolidating its position as the real driver of the market.

In term of protection regimes, the number of free (unsubsidised) house sales amounted to 117,477, accounting for 95.7% of the total. Meanwhile, social housing transactions amounted to 5,310 during the same period, up by 4.3%.

In terms of the data by autonomous region, increases in the number of house sales were recorded in every single one, with the exception of La Rioja, which recorded a decrease of -1.6%. The highest increases were observed in Aragón (53.5%), Asturias (32.5%), Cataluña (27.6%), Cantabria (26.6%) and Castilla-La Mancha (26.3%).

By municipality, the highest volume of transactions during the first quarter of 2017 was recorded in Madrid (9,674), Barcelona (4,657), Valencia (2,588), Sevilla (2,007), Zaragoza (1,799), Málaga (1,778), Palma de Mallorca (1,386) and Alicante (1,194).

Foreigners account for 16.8% of all purchases

In terms of the nationality of buyers, the number of transactions undertaken by foreign residents in Spain experienced a YoY increase for the 23rd consecutive quarter. Specifically, the number rose by 17.9% compared to the first quarter of 2016, totalling 19,805 sales. In total, the number of purchases made by foreigners (residents and non-residents) amounted to 20,593, in other words, 16.8% of the total.

By province, the most purchases by foreign residents were recorded in Alicante (4,539), Málaga (2,206), Barcelona (1,806), Madrid (1,581), Santa Cruz de Tenerife (1,416) and Baleares (1,254).

Original story: El Mundo

Translation: Carmel Drake