Residential Real Estate Developers Pull Back in Malaga

14 July 2019 – Richard D. K. Turner

Residential real estate developers in Malaga have significantly scaled back their operations after several years of continual growth. In the first semester of 2019, those developers registered 3,901 new homes in Malaga, a fall of 4.9% year on year. The fall stemmed entirely from a sharp cutback in the second quarter, with just 1,752 projected units, down 31% y-o-y.

Francisco Sarabia, the dean of the Malaga’s College of Architects, blames the sharp retraction on short-term factors, possibly due to seasonality. Juan Manuel Rosillo, the president of the Malaga Association of Builders and Developers (ACP) also downplayed the data, stating that the fluctuation was likely due to seasonality or the current election.

The main decline was also largely focused on the provincial capital of Malaga. Development continued unabated in other, smaller cities, including Estepona and Vélez Malaga.

Original Story: Málaga Hoy – Ángel Recio

Madrid’s New Town Hall Approves a 400-Home Residential Complex in Cuatro Caminos

20 June 2019 – Somos Chamberí

During its first week in office, the newly elected Town Hall of Madrid has approved plans for the construction of more than 400 homes above the old train depots in Cuatro Caminos.

The previous municipal government had prepared all of the necessary paperwork but its legislature ended before the plans could be presented for approval.

Now, the Community of Madrid must give the green light to the project, known as Residencial Metropolitan, which will include six buildings, including a 31-storey tower that will change the skyline of Chamberí forever.

Original story: Somos Chamberí (by Diego Casado)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Insur Delays the Scheduled Delivery of 650 Homes by 2 Years

3 June 2019 -Eje Prime

Insur has announced that it is delaying the scheduled delivery of more than 650 homes by two years. However, the real estate group claims that the delays “are not significant” and are due to external factors, such as the entry into force of the mortgage law, the strategy replanning of the company and “the redesign of plans to reflect the demands of clients”.

Nevertheless, the news follows the announcement of similar delays, and profit warnings, by rivals such as Neinor, Metrovacesa and Quabit, and so the market is understandably nervous about this latest news.

In the case of Insur, the company is delaying the delivery of more than 650 homes in 11 different promotions, including the BA-2 and BA-3 developments in Entrenúcleos, located in the municipal district of Dos Hermanas in Sevilla.

Nevertheless, the property developer claims that the delay in the scheduled delivery of its homes has nothing to do with Neinor’s profit warning and assures that the company’s analysts are not worried.

Currently, Insur has 275 homes under construction and 1,625 properties in developments through joint businesses. It also owns a portfolio of land spanning 95,000 m2 on which to build another 880 homes and has long-term purchase options over twelve plots with a buildability of 208,000 m2.

Original story: Eje Prime (by Marta Casado Pla)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Stoneweg Finalises the Sale of a Tower Containing 300 Rental Homes for €130M

20 May 2019 – Eje Prime

Stoneweg is joining the rental home development market. The fund is going to build a 300-home tower block on the land that it purchased from Dragados, the subsidiary of ACS, on Paseo de la Dirección in Madrid. The operation will amount to €130 million.

The company is holding advanced negotiations with the manager Ares and the US group Greystar, which specialises in student halls, regarding the development. Ares had been the favourite to acquire the tower but now Greystar is gaining ground.

Ares is on a mission to buy up rental homes. In the last few months, the company has agreed to buy 500 rental homes from Aedas Homes, 121 homes from Metrovacesa and 223 homes from Momentum.

Stoneweg purchased the plots from Dragados with the aim of building two residential blocks containing 600 homes in total. The first block will be handed over as a turnkey operation containing rental homes, whilst the second will contain homes with asking prices of €4,500/m2.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Spain Needs 150,000 New Homes Per Year But the Market is Capable of Delivering Only 75,000

16 May 2019 – El Confidencial

According to the experts, on the basis of the rate of formation of new households and for a healthy residential market, Spain needs to produce between 120,000 and 150,000 new homes per year. Those figures are a far cry from the 650,000 units that were constructed in 2007, just before the outbreak of the real estate crisis. Nevertheless, the latest data reveals that even 150,000 homes is too ambitious a target, at least for the next few years.

That is according to the latest Real Estate Pulsometer, compiled by the Cátedra Inmobiliaria in collaboration with the University of Málaga, which estimates that 70,400 new homes will be finished by the end of this year and 77,100 by the end of next year. In other words, half the number needed. The reason? According to José Antonio Pérez, Director General of the Cátedra Inmobiliaria, “In simple terms, the sector does not have sufficient manpower to build that many homes. There are sufficient numbers of qualified people – such as architects and surveyors -, but there is a distinct lack of basic labour, such as workmen and builders”.

Tens of thousands of jobs were destroyed in the construction sector during the crisis. At the height of the boom, the sector and its related segments employed almost 2 million people, but by 2017 (latest available data), that figure barely exceeded 800,000. In other words, almost 60% of the workers had disappeared. Most have either left the country (many were foreigners) or reinvented themselves in other sectors and are reluctant to return to construction now.

Employment in the construction sector has recovered slightly over the last three years, with almost half a million people working in the sector. But that figure is not sufficient to build the homes that the country needs, which means delays and higher construction costs.

Lack of bank financing

The situation is compounded by the lack of available land and the shortage of bank financing to launch those 150,000 homes. The banks are willing to finance just 65,000 homes per year, according to Juan Antonio Gómez-Pintado, President of Asprima (the Association of Property Developers of Madrid). Several alternative financing funds are trying to cover the gap but they are not enough.

It is also true that stagnant salaries and problems of affordability for young people are other factors at play against the construction of so many homes.

Original story: El Confidencial (by E. Sanz)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Aedas Homes Recorded Losses of €3.4M in Q1 2019

30 April 2019 – Eje Prime

Aedas Homes recorded losses of €3.4 million during Q1 2019, up by 47.8% compared to the same period last year (-€2.3 million). Nevertheless, the property developer’s results were in line with the business plan and revenues grew by 55% YoY during the same period to reach €14 million.

This year, the property developer controlled by the investment fund Castlelake plans to launch the construction of 2,580 homes and hand over 1,055 units. The firm has already sold 83% of the homes that it expects to hand over in 2019 and 55% of those forecast for delivery in 2020 (1,986).

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake

ZAV to Receive €15.9M from the Sale of an Intermodal Plot for 198 Homes

11 April 2019 – El Periódico 

The company Zaragoza Alta Velocidad is going to receive at least €15,972,060 from the sale of a plot of land in the future AVE neighbourhood. That is the highest price offered in the auction for the plot, known as block 6, which is located next to the Delicias intermodal station in Zaragoza.

Assuming no last minute surprises, the winner of the auction will be the company SPV Reoco 1, which is the firm behind which one of the giants of the residential property sector in Spain likes to hide, namely Aedas Homes. It will be the listed company’s first venture into Zaragoza, although it already has a presence in Madrid, Sevilla and Valencia, amongst others.

Nevertheless, according to sources close to the operation, the auction has not been closed yet, and the other two competing firms Refacleta S.L. and Innovación and Desarrollo Asistencial (de Logroño) are still in with a real chance.

The plot measures 5,821.2 m2 and has a buildability of 27,956 m2, with capacity for 198 flats. Construction on the site, the second real estate development to be built in the AVE neighbourhood, is expected to begin later this year.

Original story: El Periódico (by D. López)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Metrovacesa Invests €41M in 196 New Build Homes in Lleida

3 April 2019 – Eje Prime

Metrovacesa is investing €41 million in the development of 196 homes in Lleida. The property developer has divided the project into two parts, with the first expected to be handed over in 2021. The real estate firm Finques Farré will be entrusted with the marketing of the development and Avintia Construcciones with its construction.

The Torres del Cel project will comprise two towers standing 60 m tall, with 21 storeys each. It will also include 210 parking spaces and 112 storerooms, plus four commercial premises.

The homes will be located in the vicinity of the La Llotja Conference Centre and will have views over the Segre River. The complex is 10 minutes on foot from Lleida train station.

Besides this project, Metrovacesa owns another plot in the city with capacity for the construction of another 250 homes.

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Spaniards Hold onto their Homes for Almost 15 Years on Average

1 April 2019 – El Confidencial

On average, families and individuals in Spain own their homes for 14 years and 8 months, almost double the figure reported in 2009, a year after the burst of the real estate bubble. According to data from the College of Registrars, the average ownership period recorded in 2018 is the longest in the historical series and reflects the fact that purchase decisions nowadays are more prudent and less speculative.

Specifically, 70% of homeowners have not sold their home for almost fifteen years, whilst 80% have owned their homes for more than 8 years. Meanwhile, just 10% of homeowners buy and sell their home within five years.

Moreover, the data reveals that second-hand homes accounted for 82.5% of all transactions in 2018, compared with new homes, which accounted for the remaining 17.5%. At the height of the crisis, the two types were almost on a par. Both of these data are positive for the real estate sector as a whole because they are allowing more sustained growth.

The other major finding to emerge from the Registrars’ data relates to the economic effort that families have to make to buy a home. The mortgage payment over salary percentage was 29.7% in 2018, with higher rates in Madrid (35%) and Cataluña (33%). According to experts, that figure should not exceed 30% if households are to have enough to cover their other expenses. What’s more, the ideal percentage is between 20% and 25%.

Original story: El Confidencial (by E. Sanz)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake

Íbero Capital Lends €80M To Property Developers to Finance 600 New Homes on the Coast

28 March 2019 – El Confidencial

Property developers are finally able to access alternative financing. Over the last 12 months, Íbero Capital Management has granted loans amounting to €80 million to various property developers to finance the construction of more than 600 homes across Spain.

In its latest operation, Íbero CM has signed an agreement with Grupo Sankar to finance six residential projects in the province of Málaga for €40 million. The projects will involve the construction of more than 400 homes, and follow three other projects to which financing was granted (to another property developer) last year in Mijas.

Looking ahead, Íbero CM expects to sign several new loan operations during 2019 to close the year with total financing granted of almost €250 million. The manager is negotiating with national and regional property developers alike in regions such as the Community of Valencia, Andalucía and Madrid.

Alternative financing for residential development projects is finally taking off after years on the fringes. Other companies operating in the sector include MCAP Global Finance, Azora and Oquendo Capital, amongst others.

Original story: El Confidencial (by E. Sanz)

Translation/Summary: Carmel Drake