Latin Americans Look to Acquire Homes in Madrid

21 August 2019

According to a report by Knight Frank, Latin American investors, including buyers from as Venezuela, Colombia and Mexico, are increasingly looking to acquire properties in Madrid’s prime residential market.

The investors, many of whom tend to spend three to six months per year in Spain, look to buy flats that can be used as short-term rentals for the rest of the year. Holiday rentals in Madrid are increasingly sought out by sophisticated buyers who are willing to spend approximately €500,000 to furnish and redecorate the flats.

The trend is even expected to accelerate in the short-to-medium term given the high quality of life and lower cost of living in Spain compared to Europe’s other major capitals.

Original Story: Short Term Rentalz

Adaptation/Translation: Richard D. K. Turner

Lar & Pimco Sell A Luxury Home In Lagasca 99 For €16,000/m2

15 December 2016 – El Confidencial

They have exceeded all expectations and broken a new record in the luxury residential market in Madrid. The Socimi Lar España and the US fund manager Pimco, which jointly own (50% each) the most exclusive housing project in the capital, Lagasca 99 (previously known as Juan Bravo 3), have already sold half of the 42 super-luxury homes that make up the development, where the average sales price stands at around €10,000/m2.

But that is not the most interesting part of the story. One of the homes, measuring 800 m2 (one of the largest in the development) has been sold for around €16,000/m2, bringing its final sales price to around €13 million, including the price of the parking spaces (four or five), according to sources close to the project.

Moreover, these same sources also confirm that the project has just received the green light from the Town Hall of Madrid for the last urban planning licence necessary, not only for the definitive launch of the project, but also so that the sales of the homes can be formalised. Until now, only reservations have been accepted.

The price of €16,000/m2 undoubtedly breaks all records in the high standing market in the capital, where, until a few weeks ago, a 600 m2 penthouse on Calle Serrano 7 boasted the honour of being the most expensive multi-family home ever sold in the heart of Madrid. It was sold for €9 million, equivalent to €15,000/m2.

The transaction signed now at Lagasca 99 has even exceeded Pimco and Lar’s initial expectations, given that they had fixed a price range of between €10,000/m2 and €14,000/m2 for the properties. (…).

The identify of the purchaser has not been revealed and the utmost secrecy is being maintained. Nevertheless, several sources indicate that the buyers of Lagasca 99 include some very wealthy Latin American and Spanish investors, primarily from outside of Madrid.

The homes will be ready in 2018

The plot of land on which this exclusive development, designed by the architect Rafael de la Hoz, is going to be constructed, was sold to Lar España and Pimco at the beginning of 2015, when the two companies joined forces to purchase Eurosazor. The property developer was previously owned by Rafael Ortiz and the businessman Fernando Fernández Tapias, and owned a 26,023m2 plot of land on Juan Bravo 3 and a 5,328 m2 plot of land on Claudio Coello 108. Lar and Pimco paid €120 million for the business and since then, this asset has appreciated in value by more than 10% – the building on Claudio Coello was sold to the German firm Patrizia Inmobilien for €22 million. (…).

The homes are expected to be finished during the first quarter of 2018.

Luxury homes gain momentum

The luxury residential market in Madrid is enjoying a real boom. At the beginning of October, the homes on José Abascal 48 went on sale, with the first luxury properties now ready for their owners to move in. The building contains 17 homes measuring between 100 m2 and 400 m2, whose prices range between €6,000/2 and just over €10,000/m2. But there are also several important renovation projects being carried out right in the heart of the capital, such as on Príncipe de Vergara 11, Recoletos 13 and 8, Salustiano Olózaga 12 and Lagasca 19. (…).

Original story: El Confidencial (by E. Sanz)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Spain property: Madrid waits for the signal to ‘go’

27 April 2015 – Financial Times

Is the influx of Latin American buyers a sign the capital has turned a corner?

Over the past decade and a half, making even a modest investment in Madrid’s housing market has been a bit like taking a rollercoaster ride. Since the market reached its peak in early 2008, average house prices in Spain have dropped by 35 to 40 per cent, according to a report issued in March by the Spanish Savings Banks Foundation, known by its acronym Funcas. New developments on the outskirts of Madrid have been some of the hardest hit.

Other figures suggest an even greater drop in values: also in March, the Spanish property portal Fotocasa.es calculated that the average home in Spain has lost 45 per cent of its value since the peak of the Spanish housing boom, with values in Madrid (a 44.6 per cent drop) representative, more or less, of Spain as a whole.

But both Funcas and Fotocasa.es report glimmers of light at the end of the tunnel: Fotocasa.es recorded a 1 per cent increase in home prices in Madrid in February, while Funcas says that the Spanish housing market is now in an “incipient, gradual recovery”.

As in Barcelona and the Balearic Islands, where small price rises have also been recorded in recent months, overseas buyers are helping to create a mild sense of optimism.

In Madrid, the most enthusiastic foreign homebuyers are heading from across the Atlantic, rather than Europe, according to Alberto Costillo, prime residential director at Knight Frank Spain. A “perfect storm” is bringing a new wave of wealthy Latin American house-hunters to Madrid, particularly from Mexico, Colombia and Venezuela.

“Madrid has advantages of culture and language, and Latin American buyers have long thought of Madrid as a safe haven. But with an improving Spanish economy, and the recent fall in the value of the euro [Latin Americans are more likely to have savings in dollars than euros], they see now see a real opportunity here,” says Costillo.

With its pretty boating lake and rows of statues, many wealthy foreign buyers look to purchase property near the city’s celebrated Retiro Park.

In the grid-like Salamanca district adjacent to Retiro Park, Knight Frank is selling a three-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment with 187 sq metres of living space, parquet floors and air conditioning in a building dating from the early 20th century for €1.47m.

In the well-heeled neighbourhood of El Viso, part of the Chamartín district north of the city centre, a 402 sq metre duplex apartment with four en suite bedrooms and a txoko — a combined cooking and dining space more commonly found in homes in the Basque Country — has an asking price of €4m. On sale through the agency Rimontgó, the unit has three parking spaces and the building has a pool and a gym for residents’ use.

“[El Viso is] quiet and exclusive, but also well-connected with the rest of the city and within easy reach of the downtown,” says José Ribes, director-general of the agency handling the sale. “This is a part of town most associated with aristocrats and intellectuals, but in recent years it has attracted people working in the financial sector, politicians and sportsmen.”

Salamanca and Chamartín are home to many of Madrid’s best restaurants. The capital has 12 Michelin-starred restaurants, compared with 23 in Barcelona. But Madrid is the only one of the two cities with a three-star restaurant — David Muñoz’s DiverXO, where dishes are called “canvases” and diners are asked to arrive “with an open mind”.

Central districts of Madrid are densely populated, but some of the city’s satellite communities, particularly to the northwest, offer more leg room for buyers. In Pozuelo de Alarcón, nestling among pine trees and benefiting from cool breezes from the nearby Sierra de Guadarrama mountains, a gated housing estate called La Finca is home to some of the capital’s wealthiest residents, including footballers from Real Madrid such as Cristiano Ronaldo.

Typical of the sprawling, cubist-style homes at La Finca is a five-bedroom, seven-bathroom house with almost 2,000 sq metres of living space. The property has a two-bedroom housekeeper’s apartment, a lift, indoor and outdoor pools, a gym, a sauna, a cinema, a wine cellar and a carport for six vehicles. On sale through La Finca Real Estate for €11m, the house stands on a plot of just over a hectare. However, according to one estate agent who prefers to remain anonymous, potential buyers are sometimes put off La Finca “because of its reputation as a playground for soccer stars”.

On Calle de Serrano, a broad, tree-lined avenue in the Salamanca district which is sometimes referred to as Madrid’s golden mile for its high-end shopping, there are few signs of the economic downturn, dubbed la crisis in Spain. However, the recession has hit some of the city’s public infrastructure.

Guillermo Bernardo, a former banker with two young daughters who now runs his own cabinet-making business, points to cutbacks in the maintenance of neighbourhood parks and gardens. “The Retiro is Madrid’s calling card, and it’s immaculate, but there is less money these days to clean and repair local playgrounds,” he says. “The perception that most people have is that the state of the economy hasn’t changed a lot but we may be about to turn a corner. Nothing is forever, not even la crisis”.

Buying guide

● Buyers should budget 6 per cent of the sale price to cover land registry taxes

● Estate agents typically charge vendors a commission of 3 to 5 per cent

● Madrid has the third largest metropolitan area in the EU by population size

● Units in a building without a lift are unpopular and may be difficult to resell

● Madrid has hot, dry summers and cool, usually sunny, winters

● Violent crime is rare but pickpocketing and bag snatching can be a problem

What you can buy for . . .

€500,000 A modern, 90 sq metre flat with two bedrooms in the Chamartín district of Madrid

€1m A 140 sq metre, three-bedroom apartment in the Salamanca district, within walking distance of Retiro Park

€5m A seven-bedroom house in El Viso with an outdoor pool on a plot measuring 1,000 sq metres

Original story: Financial Times (by Nick Foster)

Edited by: Carmel Drake

Savills: Spain’s Commercial Property Market Outlook Is Improving

11 March 2015 – Property Wire

There are already signs that Spain’s residential property market is recovering and now a new report shows that its commercial markets are also growing.

International real estate advisor Savills is predicting CBD office yields in Madrid will move from 5% to 4% and 4.5% for super prime properties, as a lack of good quality stock puts pressure on pricing.

This follows strong investment volumes in Spain’s office market during 2014 in which €2.8 billion was transacted, triple the €990 million total in 2013.

The firm states that in terms of location, 60% of investment was made in Madrid, 30% in Barcelona and the remaining 10% in other locations throughout the country.

Savills reports that the growing amount of demand and the lack of supply continues to push achievable yields down in the CBD and the main business areas. Prime yields at the end of the year moved by 100 basis points, secondary areas by 75 basis points and out of town locations saw a change of 50 basis points.

‘Investors preference for Spain’s more mature market of Madrid is undeniable, accounting for a total of €1.65 billion. But the lack of good quality stock is putting pressure on yields,’ said Luis Espadas, director of investment at Savills Spain.

‘The yield in the CBD stands at 5%, and for super prime properties could achieve between 4% and 4.5%,’ he added.

The firm finds that SOCIMIs, the Spanish equivalent of REIT’s, were very active in the office market, with 27% of their total capital being invested in commercial property and 76% of that total in offices.

‘Whilst the SOCIMI and domestic investors were very active in 2014 this year we predict we will see large Latin American investors capitalizing on opportunities in the Spanish office market,’ said Pablo Pavia, director of investment at Savills Spain.

The Savills report also states that take up in the office market at the end of 2014 was 382,000 square meters, some 2.5% less than the previous year. However, 2013 take up was heavily distorted by the Vodafone letting of 50,000 square meters, and discounting that letting take-up grew 12% on the previous year.

Additionally, it points out that there are a number of large space requirements currently in the market, several of which are seeking space exceeding 5,000 square meters.

‘Thanks to signs of a recovery in Spain some occupiers are more willing to sign pre-lease agreements on speculative space in the CBD which in term is prompting major market players to carry out speculative developments. The increase in take up activity will cause rents in the best properties to continue to rise through 2015,’ said Ana Zavala, director of office agency at Savills.

According to Savills rents in the CBD are currently in excess of €25.50 per square meter and could reach €28 per square meter in 2015 given continued strong take up. The firm also predicts landlord will continue to undertake refurbishment projects in 2015, with three quarters of new space in the pipeline for the upcoming year related to refurbishment projects.

Original story: Property Wire

Edited by: Carmel Drake