Servihabitat: House Prices Will Rise By 3.8% In 2016

2 June 2016 – Expansión

The increase in demand, the reactivation of investment activity and the improvement in access to mortgage financing are some of the factors behind the marked improvement in the residential market.

In its report entitled “The Residential Market in Spain”, Servihabitat, which is jointly owned by TPG and CaixaBank, says that “the positive trend experienced in house prices/values in Spain during 2015 will be consolidated this year”. The largest price rises are forecast in the Balearic Islands (+6.8%), the Community of Valencia (+4.6%), Cataluña (+4.4%) and the Community of Madrid (+4%).

The average price rise across Spain is expected to amount to 3.8%, which is 2.4 points below the figure (6.2%) forecast by Servihabitat in November. This lowering of expectations may be due to the fact that prices actually accelerated at the end of last year. In addition, “there is a certain amount of volatility because the realities of the sector are very different by area”, said Julián Cabanillas, CEO at Servihabitat.

The report predicts “that this year, the rate of growth will continue” in terms of the sale and purchase of residential properties, driven “by pressure from increased demand”. Specifically, in 2016, the number of operations is expected to grow by almost 10% YoY, which means that more than 440,000 homes will be sold in total.

The autonomous regions where sales activity is expected to increase by the most this year include: Asturias, Cataluña, País Vasco, the Community of Madrid, La Rioja and the Community of Valencia, as well as in the Canary and Balearic Islands, all of which have a forecast YoY variation of more than 10%. The only region where sales are expected to decrease is Extremadura (-0.6%). (…).

The report also forecasts YoY growth of 12.5% in terms of the number new homes that will be completed this year, to reach 50,800 units.

The volume of new build stock will continue to decrease by approximately 25%, from 492,000 homes last year to 367,500 by the end of 2016, according to the study. (…).

Boom in the rental sector

The study points out that, according to Eurostat, the rental market in Spain has grown significantly in recent years. “More than 21% of Spaniards live in a rented home, a figure that brings Spain ever closer to other European countries with more tradition in this regard. In addition, the forecast until the end of the year shows that the number of rental operations will remain stable or increase with respect to the number of sale and purchase operations, at the same time as rental prices are forecast to stabilise”

On the other hand, the company highlights that more than 17% of purchases in Spain were made by foreigners in 2015, who acquired more than 69,000 homes in total, for both residential and holiday use. “The concentration in just eight provinces is noteworthy: Alicante, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, the Balearic Islands, Málaga, Girona, Las Palmas, Murcia and Almería”, adds the report.

Original story: Expansión (by Juanma Lamet)

Translation: Carmel Drake