Marco Aldany Founder Seeks Financial Partner for his Coliving Business

26 February 2019 – Idealista

(…). One of the founders of the chain of hairdressers Marco Aldany is strengthening his commitment to the real estate sector and, following the success of his student residence business, MiCasaInn, is raising the stakes with a search for financial partners to develop a coliving company in Madrid. According to explanations provided by Alejandro Fernández-Luengo to Idealista, the company already has three buildings in the centre of the capital that it could dedicate to this segment, although it wants a financial partner to help its growth across the rest of Spain.

This new venture into the coliving sector will arrive in the form of a spin-off. “After positioning ourselves as one of the main companies specialising in students housing in Spain through MiCasaInn, we believe that the natural step is to pilot a project for young people who have finished studying and who are joining the work place, so that they can continue with us”, said Fernández-Luengo.

Currently, the company has a portfolio of assets in which it has invested more than €50 million, in the hope of launching this project. It has one building in Plaza de Canalejas, measuring 4,500 m2, another in Puerta del Sol, spanning 7,000 m2 and a third in Chueca, which could become the group’s first coliving spaces once its new brand has been launched (…).

Original story: Idealista (by Custodio Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Lennar’s Socimi Al Breck Sells its first 4 Assets for €3.5M

5 January 2018 – Eje Prime

One of the largest real estate companies in the United States of America is doing business in Spain. Lennar Corporation has sold four properties through one of its Spanish Socimis, Al Breck, for €3.49 million, according to a statement issued by the company. The firm has carried out the transaction through the company Rialto Capital Management, an investment vehicle, headquartered in Luxembourg that Lennar uses to carry out real estate operations in Europe and the only one that has a stable structure in Spain.

The company disposed of the properties in December, whereby generating a profit of €1.79 million. The firm, which has a loan linked to the assets, will have to assume a financial cost of approximately €1.2 million in this regard.

Lennar Corporation debuted on the Alternative Investment Market (MAB) with Al Breck at the end of November 2016 (although it began its activity in Spain in December 2014), with a stock of almost 639 rental homes located in the centre of Madrid. The Socimi formed its asset portfolio by purchasing a batch of properties from Segurfondo Inversión in December 2014.

Specifically, the Socimi’s assets are located throughout the centre of the Spanish capital (in the following districts: Centro, Salamanca, Chamberí and Chueca), as well as in La Moreleja and areas close to Alcobendas and Torrejón de Ardoz. It also owns retail premises and offices. According to its IPO brochure, the market value of its asset portfolio amounted to €110.52 million (in November 2016).

The Socimi made its stock market debut with a business plan that seeks to generate value from its portfolio, in other words, by selling all of its homes within a five-year period, which ends in December 2020. The company has now started this divestment process with the sale of these four assets.

Al Breck’s strategy

Specifically, the company’s business plan involves investing in improvements to its homes, “to increase returns and improve their occupancy rates to stable levels, implementing an aggressive rental strategy that includes, where necessary, decreasing rents and making concessions to tenants to improve cash flow conditions”.

Subsequently, according to the group’s IPO brochure, “having improved the occupancy rates, the aim is to keep them stable and initiate a progressive increase in rental prices, to reflect the improvements made to the properties and market rates”.

Finally, the Socimi plans “to optimise the value of the portfolio, selling assets either individually or in batches, when demand and prices so favour it and having completed the minimum ownership period of three years”, according to details provided in the brochure.

At the end of last year, the company also launched a second Socimi, Ceres Real Estate Socimi. Although for the time being, the activity of that entity is very limited (it does not have any assets in its portfolio), the sole administrator of the company is Rialto Capital (…).

Original story: Eje Prime (by C. Pareja)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Airbnb, HomeAway & Wimdu Outperform Traditional Long-Term Lets

23 February 2017 – El Confidencial

Traditional rental agreements (…), which are governed in Spain by the Urban Rental Act (LAU) and which allow a tenant to live in a home for an extended period of time, are starting to become scarce in some very specific areas of large cities such as Madrid and Barcelona. They are falling victim to the unstoppable progress of so-called tourist apartments or short-stay lets (available on a daily, weekly or monthly basis), which have grown like wildfire in recent years, thanks to the development of platforms such as Airbnb, HomeAway, Wimdu, Niumba, Rentalia and Booking.

Users consider that these assets offer a much more flexible and economic alternative than the product offered by the hotel sector. Meanwhile, homeowners have found a business niche and are generating extra income both from their own homes and from properties acquired as investments. Moreover, their yields are ranging between 4% and 8%, which is well above those offered by other traditional investment products at the moment, including traditional rental properties.

To give us an idea of the volumes being handled by these types of platforms, Airbnb has 13,000 online adverts in the city of Madrid, whilst Idealista has 8,700 adverts for rental homes. In Barcelona, the online platform has 20,000 adverts compared with 6,400 on the real estate portal.

Nevertheless, the problem is limited to very specific locations, such as Malasaña and Chueca in Madrid and Las Ramblas and El L’Eixample in Barcelona. There it is almost impossible to find a long-term rental home. As such, the few products that do come onto the market are leased in a matter of hours and at much higher prices than they were just a couple of years ago. (…).

Rental prices in Malasaña now rarely fall below €800 for a one-bedroom flat measuring just 40m2, but on average, homes there cost between €1,200 and €1,300 per month. On the real estate portal Idealista, there are a few 60m2 flats for rent, for which the owners are asking €2,700/month and even €3,500/month for luxury properties.

Emergence of individual investors

Airbnb defends the “home-sharing” concept, saying that it does not remove available housing from the market because people who live in these homes are still around, they are just sharing their primary residences. Some of these people are using the money to pay for their housing costs”, says the platform. “Studies have been carried out in several cities around the world, showing that the number of homes advertised on Airbnb for exclusively professional use is too low to have any impact on the housing market”.

Nevertheless, the high returns offered by tourist apartments have led many individuals and small-time investors to buy homes in these areas, to subsequently sell them or rent them to tourists. Specifically, individual investors are behind 3 out of every 10 house sales in Madrid, according to data from Tecnocasa. (…).

A very localised phenomenon

What is happening in Malasaña is also being seen on some other very specific streets both in Madrid and Barcelona, where rental prices have really soared. According to Urban Data Analytics, rental prices have risen by more than 20% in neighbourhoods such as Sant Andreu and Sants-Montjuïc, and by 15% in areas such as Gràcia, where prices decreased slightly during the crisis. (…).

According to Bankinter, in its latest report about the Spanish residential sector, these price increases will not last forever. “In our opinion, these double-digit increases, which are driven by a shortage of supply and the boom in tourist rentals, will not last in the long term, nor will they spread to the market as a whole, especially if new legislation is introduced to limit the number of tourist homes a given owner may rent out”.

Sources at Airbnb insist that “The increases in house and rental prices are due to normal factors at play in the real estate market, including: the high demand to live in cities, the appeal of real estate as investment property, the lack of space to build new developments…also, the pressure on house prices is not just being seen in Barcelona, it is happening in all of the large cities around the world (….). House prices were rising before Airbnb ever existed (…)”.

Original story: El Confidencial (by E. Sanz)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Al Breck’s Socimi Debuts On The MAB With 300 Rental Homes

30 November 2016 – Cuatro.com

The Socimi RREF II Al Breck will debut on the MAB today (Wednesday 30 November) at a price of €5.40 per share.

The fund Al Breck will debut its new Socimi on the Alternative Investment Market (MAB) today, Wednesday 30 November. The Socimi was constituted with a stock of around 300 rental homes, located in the centre of Madrid. The fund acquired the properties from the Spanish fund Segurfondo Investion in December 2014.

The firm, known as RREF II Al Breck Socimi, will debut on the stock market at a price of €5.40 per share, which represents a company valuation of €28.8 million, according to the BME.

Specifically, the new Socimi owns a stock of 293 homes located in the centre of Madrid (in the following neighbourhoods: Centro, Salamanca, Chamberí and Chueca), as well as in La Moraleja (Alcobendas) and in towns close to Alcobendas and Torrejón de Ardoz. It also owns twelve retail premises and one office.

According to the prospectus for the IPO, the market value of this portfolio of assets, calculated by an independent firm, amounts to €110.52 million.

On the other side, the company’s debt amounts to €70.03 million, and comprises a participative loan granted by the parent fund, i.e. a liability equivalent to 63% of the value of the portfolio. In addition, all of the homes are mortgaged in favour of Banco de Sabadell, the entity that financed their acquisition.

The Socimi will debut on the stock market with a business plan that involves generating value from its portfolio, in other words, forecasts selling all of the homes within a five-year period, which will end in December 2020.

Aggressive strategy

Specifically, the plan involves investing in improvements in the homes “to increase returns and improve occupancy rates to stable levels, implementing an aggressive rental strategy that includes, where necessary, lowering rents and making concessions to tenants to improve their cash flows”.

Subsequently, “once the occupancy rates have increased, we will ensure they remain stable and start to progressively increase rental income, in accordance with the improvements made at the properties and market prices”.

Finally, the Socimi expects “to optimise the value of the portfolio by selling the assets either individually or in batches, when demand and price make such a decision worthwhile and only after the minimum holding period of three years (applicable to all Socimis) has been exceeded”, according to the prospectus.

Original story: Cuatro.com

Translation: Carmel Drake