Demand For Rental Properties Rises & Prices Soar

29 May 2017 – Expansión

Rental homes have become the most profitable and successful option in the residential investment sector. 80% of owners who put a home up for rent last year managed to let it without any problem, a percentage that is much higher than those who wanted to sell their property, 33%, according to Fotocasa.

Three out of every ten Spaniards had a direct relationship with the property market in 2016, with the demand for rental housing constituting the activity with the most weight, according to the findings of the “Survey of the housing market in Spain 2016-2017″, published by Fotocasa this week.

“At the moment, demand for rental housing exceeds demand for buying properties: whilst 14% of the population participated in the rental market in 2016, only 10% of Spaniards participated in the purchase market; and the percentages of people looking for rental homes (5%) and to buy homes (6%) are very similar”, said Beatriz Toribio, Head of Research at Fotocasa.

The strong growth in demand, coupled with the rigidity of the supply of rental homes, have led to blocks of unmet demand and important increases in prices over the last few months, according to the experts. In Spain, on average, rental prices have risen by 10% in the last year. That figure is higher in large cities such as Madrid and Barcelona, which account for approximately 50% of demand for domestic rental properties, according to Solvia.

“The two regions are where rental prices have grown by the most in the last year, specifically, by 17% in Cataluña and by 12% in Madrid”, said Toribio. The price per square metre of a rental property in Cataluña is €11.85/m2/month, whilst in Madrid, the price is €11.22/m2/month.

Rental prices have been growing continuously in these two areas of Spain for the last 34 months; meanwhile, they have been rising in Andalucía and Valencia for the last 27 months. The evolution of these cities is explained because they account for a higher supply of employment, which attracts young people, who are the main consumers of rental homes. The changes in the new generations have modified the real estate sector in Spain: 33% of people who are looking for a home choose a rental property, according to the Housing Observatory. In some areas such as Valencia, that percentage can exceed 50%. The profile of the people who prefer to rent are the so-called Millennials, a segment of the population that is going to continue to grow: they are expected to move out of home, generating a need for 520,000 rental homes over the next 3-5 years.

Original story: Expansión (by D. Esperanza and R. Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake

RE Portals Regard Lower Rate Of House Sales Growth As “Normal”

30 April 2017 – Europa Press

The real estate portals regard the moderation in the growth in house sales in February (which rose by only 1.2%, according to data published in April by INE) as a “symptom of normalisation”. They also believe that this data should not be interpreted as a “step backwards”, given that “very positive”, albeit “less bulky” figures are predicted for 2017.

The Head of Research at Idealista, Fernando Encinar, said that, although the figures are not “spectacular” and the statistics reveal a month-on-month decrease, they are still “positive” since they represent the best month of February since 2011.

Moreover, he said that if we take into account the homes sold during the last twelve months, the figure amounts to more than 410,000, which is 14% higher than during the previous 12 months. Moreover, this figure that “is getting closer to a normalised market”.

In addition, the Head of Research at Fotocasa, Beatriz Toribio, considers that this slowdown in the growth in house sales is a consequence of the trend towards normalisation in the Spanish real estate market.

“2017 will be a very positive year for the sector, in which we expect the recovery to be consolidated, although it is true that the increases in the different statistics that measure the sector’s health may not be as bulky as last year”, she explained.

A “very positive” year, with a “slow and moderate” recovery

According to Toribio, the sector is resuming its activity “in a firm and consolidated way, thanks to the return of credit, the improvement in the economy and interest from investors in homes”, but she states that “we should not forget that we are starting from a very low level, after the significant decreases recorded during the years of the crisis”, which means that the recovery will necessarily be “slow and moderate”.

Andalucía, Cataluña, the Community of Valencia and the Community of Madrid were the autonomous regions that recorded the highest number of operations (during 2016), which shows that “the improvement in the sector is not distributed evenly (across the country)”.

Finally, the Head of Research at, Manuel Gandarias, highlights that the sales figure has now exceeded one continuous year of increases. “The YoY data for the month of February shows a decrease compared to the figure in January, which is not the case if we take into account the fact that the data reflects operations undertaken between the end and beginning of the year when there are typically fewer signings”, he added.

In this sense, Gandarias explained that, although it is true that the YoY increase is “minimal” and is no longer in the double digits, the data “should not be interpreted as a step backwards, in any way”, but rather that it represents a “symptom of normalisation, given that we are no longer making comparisons with negative figures”. “It continues the positive trend, which has now been recorded consecutively for the last 13 months”, he said.

Original story: Europa Press

Translation: Carmel Drake

RE Portals Predict House Price Rises In 2016

11 December 2015 – El Economista

Experts at the real estate portals agree that the data published last Thursday by Spain’s National Institute of Statistics (INE) is positive. It shows a YoY increase in house prices of 4.5% during the third quarter, the highest since the start of the crisis.

Moreover, the experts consider that, although the recovery in the residential sector is not homogenous across the whole of Spain, it is likely that price increases will be seen in all regions next year.

The Director of the Research Office at, Manuel Gandarías, said that “prices will begin to increase across the board in 2016, after the areas with limited supply and high demand finished their downwards course months ago”.

“The overvaluations experienced in certain towns have all but adjusted to the new pace in the market, and few locations will see notable decreases, given that an equilibrium has now been achieved”, he added.

Meanwhile, the Head of Research at Fotocasa, Beatriz Toribio, believes that INE’s data “reflects that the housing sector has now left behind the large price decreases”, but she warns that “that does not mean that prices have bottomed out”.

“Over the next few months, we will see fluctuations characteristic of the normalisation that is happening in the sector, and it will become more apparent that the sector is recovering at two speeds, given that whilst in certain areas, sales and prices are on the rise, in others, the trend will continue to decrease for quite some time”, she added.

Sales are also normalising

Similarly, the Head of Research at Idealista, Fernando Encinar, said that the price data from INE “signals the normalisation of the sector”. (…).

The Ministry of Development also published data on Thursday about house sales, which showed that the number of transactions increased by 16.3% during the third quarter, to 93,528 units, the highest volume for that period since 2009. Encinar believes that “this is good news, although not a surprise for the sector”.

“The data also confirms the forecasts that the sector is going to normalise at two speeds, with operations growing by more than 20% on a YoY basis in some regions, and the rate of increase barely exceeding 6% in others”, he said.

Original story: El Economista

Translation: Carmel Drake