New RE Record: 450m2 Luxury Apartment In Barcelona Sold For €10M

29 June 2017 – Expansión

The Spanish real estate market is starting to reflect clear signs of a recovery after years of decline. These first indications of revival are already a reality in some areas of the large cities, such as Madrid and Barcelona and, above all, in a particular type of product: luxury housing.

An example of this boom can be seen in the record prices that have been achieved over the last few months in the high-end residential market. “The trend in the last three years has been a gradual increase in residential prices. If we focus on prime products and areas, we see that this increase has been considerably greater. Last year, nevertheless, was a year of transition due to the political uncertainty, and so, although prices continued to rise, in general, they did so at a more conservative pace, whereby stabilising. This year, the increase is continuing to display a bullish trend”, explained Carlos Zamora, Residential Director at Knight Frank in Spain.

The latest example is a home measuring 450 m2, located in the L’Antigua Esquerra neighbourhood of l’Eixample, alongside Barcelona’s famous Paseo de Grácia. The new owner has spent €10 million to acquire this 4-bedroom apartment, which has four bathrooms and a terrace measuring 250 m2 with views over La Pedrera and Paseo de Gràcia, explained the real estate agency Coldwell Banker Prestige Barcelona.

The home, which has been completely refurbished, includes an intelligent home automation system and a Zen garden located in an inner courtyard. In addition to the habitable surface area of 500 m2, the flat comes with five parking spaces for cars, two parking spaces for motorbikes and a storeroom in the basement, according to the estate agent’s advert.

Its price per m2 amounts to: €16,500/m2. “This price is due primarily to the fact that it is a unique property, located in the most prime area of Barcelona, which has been completely redecorated and furnished”, explained François Carriere, founding partner at Coldwell Banker Prestige Barcelona, who highlights that the average price of apartments in the area stands at around €12,000/m2, whilst the price of penthouses and ground floor apartments with gardens increases to €15,000/m2.

“An apartment with these characteristics in London would be sold for around €25,000/m2”, according to Carriere.

Original story: Expansión (by Rocío Ruiz)

Translation: Carmel Drake

ST: House Prices Rose By 2.5% In 2016

4 April 2017 – El Mundo

The average price of housing in Spain experienced an average annual increase of 2.5%, to reach €1,469/m2, according to the Real Estate Sector Trend Report from ST Sociedad de Tasación. In the second half of 2016 alone, house prices rose by 1.5%. Despite this YoY increase, the average salary required to acquire a home remained stable at 7.4 years.

According to Juan Fernández-Aceytuno, Director General of the appraisal company, “the positive variation experienced over the last 18 months confirms the recovery that we have been predicting since 2015”. “Nevertheless”, he clarified, “the average behaviour of prices is not the same across every province”.

In this way, by province, Barcelona experienced an annual increase of 5.5%, followed by the Balearic Islands, with an increase of 4.6% and Madrid, 4.4%. By contrast, Teruel with a reduction of -2.1% and Álava with a fall of -1.6% experienced the highest price decreases, followed by Pontevedra (-1.4%), Zamora (-1.3%) and Burgos (-1.1%).

By autonomous region, the price of new and second-hand homes are still decreasing in some areas, led by Asturias with a decrease of -0.5%, followed by La Rioja (-0.4%) and Castilla y León (-0.3%). Meanwhile, Cataluña (4.8%), the Balearic Islands (4.6%), Madrid (4.4%) and Melilla (3.3%) recorded the highest annual increases.

7.4 years of salary to buy a home

ST Sociedad de Tasación’s Real Estate Effort Index, which defines the number of years of full pay that an average citizen needs to buy an average home, did not change, remaining stable at 7.4 years in the first quarter of 2017.

The Balearic Islands continued to be the region where it takes the longest to acquire a home (14.4 years), although that figure has decreased with respect to 2016. By contrast, La Rioja is the region where it is easiest to access housing (4.9 years), followed by Murcia, where it takes 5.1 years of full pay to buy a home.

Meanwhile, the Accessibility Index prepared by ST Sociedad de Tasación reflects a slight improvement at the state level for the third consecutive quarter. Based on a benchmark of 100 points for those cases in which the capacity for indebtedness is sufficient, the average level in Spain in the first quarter of 2017 amounted to 107 points, three points above the level in the previous quarter. The state average remained above the minimum salary level for the acquisition of an average home for the fifth consecutive quarter.

By autonomous region, Madrid, Cataluña and the Balearic Islands continued to register insufficient levels for the acquisition of a home, with Cantabria moving into positive territory.

Confidence increases in the real estate sector

ST Sociedad de Tasación’s Real Estate Confidence Index continued its upward trend during the first quarter of 2017, registering an increase of 0.9 points, to reach 55.4 points, out of a total of 100. The index hit its lowest ever value in December 2012, at 30.6 points.

By autonomous region, La Rioja exceeds sixty points, with 60.2, followed by Madrid (58.4) and the Balearic Islands (57.6), which reported the highest confidence indices. By contrast, Castilla y León (50.7), País Vasco (51) and Murcia (51.2) recorded the lowest levels.

Original story: El Mundo

Translation: Carmel Drake

Tecnocasa: Rental Prices Rose By 4.72% In 2016

21 February 2017 – El Mundo

The rental market is booming, in particular, rental prices. They are accelerating significantly in the cities of Madrid and Barcelona, above all, in the latter.

In 2016, the average price of second-hand rental homes in the Catalan capital soared by 11.84% in YoY terms, whilst in the Spanish capital, prices rose by the not insignificant amount of 6.26%. In this way, the average increase in rental prices across the country with respect to 2015 amounted to 4.72%, according to the III Report about the rental market 2016 prepared by Tecnocasa and the University Pompeu Fabra (UPF) in Barcelona.

Converting these percentages into absolute terms, the average monthly price per m2 rose to €12.09/m2 in Barcelona, to €11.20/m2 in Madrid and to €8.87/m2 across Spain as a whole. “The difference (between the two largest cities in the country) is growing”, say sources at Tecnocasa.

According to the real estate network, other indicators that provide further evidence of the boom in the rental market include: the average period of time required to market a home; the final price with respect to the asking price; and the number of visits needed for a property to be leased. In terms of the first of these factors, it currently takes only 30 days to lease a home, which is 11 days less than in 2013 and another indication of the high demand that exists nowadays.

In the same vein, the number of visits needed to lease a home decreased to 7.22 on average in 2016, a figure that is well below the number registered in 2012 (8.44). Finally, in light of these parameters, it is hardly surprising that the final agreed price is increasingly closer to the asking price. “Tenants’ bargaining power has decreased. The final rental price paid is just 3% below the asking price”, according to Tecnocasa. In 2012, that discount averaged 6%.

Finally, sources at the real estate firm and the university responsible for the study describe the profiles of typical landlords and tenants. On the supply side, there are increasingly more pensioners (32%). Moreover, 95% of landlords are Spanish and 65% are married.

In terms of the typical tenant, they are usually single (58%), with a permanent employment contract (68%) and aged between 25 and 44 years (73%). Like in the case of landlords, the majority are Spanish (73%).

Original story: El Mundo (by Jorge Salido Cobo)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Town Hall Of Madrid Launches Campaign To Buy 150 Homes

7 February 2017 – El Confidencial

The Town Hall of Madrid, governed by Ahora Madrid, wants to increase its stock of social rental housing. The decision was taken last September by the Board of Directors of the Empresa Municipal de la Vivienda y Suelo de Madrid (Madrid’s Municipal Land and Housing Company or EMVS), but the marketing campaign has not been launched until now.

Its aim is to attract the attention of individuals and companies that are looking to sell off their homes. However, not all properties qualify. Homes must be “free from charges and levies, tenants, occupants and squatters”. In other words, they must be empty. Moreover, the Town Hall has said that it will pay between €65,000 and €160,000 per property. The EMVS is hoping to acquire 150 homes in total (…).

Nevertheless, the Town Hall is not willing to pay any price, not even for those homes located in the best neighbourhoods. (…). It has established fixed prices for the homes it is will to buy, which vary depending on location. In this way, the price per m2 may not exceed €1,300 in Puente de Vallecas and Villaverde; €1,500 in Carabanchel, Latina, Usera, Vicálvaro and Villa de Vallecas; €1,800 in Arganzuela, Ciudad Lineal, Hortaleza, Moratalaz, San Blas and Tetuán, and €2,000 in Centro, Chamartín, Chamberí, Fuencarral-El Pardo, Moncloa-Aravaca, Retiro and Salamanca.

On the basis of these figures, the Town Hall is going to spend, at least, €9.7 million (assuming that it buys 150 homes measuring 50 m2 and pays €1,300/m2 for each one). (…).

To put these figures in context, the price per m2 of second-hand homes in the neighbourhoods of Salamanca and Retiro amounted to €4,590/m2 and €3,734/m2 at the end of 2016, according to data from Idealista. Meanwhile, prices stood at around €1,400/m2 in Puente de Vallecas and Villaverde. (…).

Interested vendors should submit their tenders by 14:00 on 1 March 2017 in the EMVS’s General Registry in Calle Palos de la Frontera, 13. Further information is available on the EMVS website.

Original story: El Confidencial

Translation: Carmel Drake

TecniTasa: Spain’s Most Expensive Homes Cost €10,000/m2+

21 November 2016 – Expansión

(…). The latest report from the appraisal company TecniTasa reveals some surprising, and some traditional, conclusions about Spain’s real estate market. For example, Calle Serrano in Madrid is still the most exclusive in the country, with a maximum price of €10,246/m2. In other words, a 100 m2 flat on that street can cost more than €1 million.

Barcelona is the second ranked city for the most expensive housing per m2. The maximum appraisal value per m2 in the Cataluñan capital amounts to €8,957/m2 on Paseo de Gracia. That represents an increase of 6% compared to 2015, but is 12.6% less than the most expensive homes on the Madrilenian Calle Serrano, whose marginal price depreciated by 6% this year, even though the average price in the neighbourhood of Salamanca continued to rise.

It is worth remembering that TecniTasa does not measure the average price of luxury homes in cities, but rather the maximum price in the most expensive areas.

San Sebastián is placed third in the ranking, at €6,820/m2, for homes the area between Avenida Libertad, Boulevard, Plaza Guipúzcoa and Calle Hernani, in the city centre and very close to the La Concha beach. That price is 11% higher than in 2015.

Puerto Banús, in Marbella (Málaga), is the fourth most expensive area. A 100 m2 home in this exclusive enclave on the Costa del Sol can cost up to €555,900. It is followed by Bilbao (€5,500/m2, on Plaza de Euskadi), Santander (€5,359/m2, in El Sardinero), Pamplona (€5,048/m2, on Paseo Sarasate) and Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, where a beachfront apartment on Las Canteras beach can cost €4,561/m2.

“House prices are mainly rising in the cities in the north and east, as well as on the islands. We expect that these increases will spread and consolidate in the rest of Spain, as a result of the greater political stability afforded by the formation of the Government and the overall improvement in the economy”, said José María Basáñez, Chairman of TecniTasa. (…).

By autonomous region

In Andalucía, it is noteworthy that luxury homes in Marbella, as well as in Cádiz (€4,545/m2, on the Paseo Marítimo) and Málaga (€4,200/m2, in La Malagueta) are more expensive than in the capital, Sevilla (€4,141/m2, in the area around the cathedral). It is also worth highlighting that the most expensive homes in Jerez saw price increases of 8%.

Meanwhile, the most expensive street in Palma de Mallorca, the Paseo Marítimo, saw an increase of 5%, to €3,276/m2. (…).

In Castilla y León, significant decreases were recorded in Burgos – with a decrease in maximum prices of 8%, to €2,186/m2 -, as well as in Palencia (-3%) and Valladolid, where the most expensive street saw a price decrease of 3% to €4,559/m2, although it is still the most expensive capital in the autonomous region.

TecniTasa’s report also highlights the most affordable areas in each province. Talavera de la Reina (Toledo) is the cheapest, at €317/m2. It was followed by Castellón (€363/m2), Huesca (€392/m2), Elche (Alicante, €399/m2), all with streets where the house price per m2 falls below the psychological barrier of €400/m2. (…).

The highest increase was recorded in Zamora, where minimum prices rose by 20% with respect to 2015, to reach €944/m2 in the Pinilla and San Ramón area. Minmum prices in Madrid rose by 16% with respect to last year, to reach €723/m2 in San Cristóbal de los Ángeles. (…). In Barcelona, the cheapest homes are located in Ciutat Meridiana, at €1,143/m2.

Original story: Expansión (by Juanma Lamet)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Notaries: House Sales Rose By 13.3% In Q2

26 October 2016 – El Mundo

The housing market is sticking firmly to its path of recovery. This situation means that house sales, prices and the granting of mortgages are all continuing to rise, according to real estate statistics from the General Council of Notaries corresponding to the second quarter of 2016.

During Q2 2016, house sales rose by 13.3% at the national level (122,776 transactions were recorded), with double digit growth rates recorded in the vast majority of autonomous regions. Reductions in the number of house sales were recorded only in Navarra (-20.4%) and La Rioja (-2.7%).

The Balearic Islands – the main market driver

Six of the autonomous regions that recorded sales growth registered increases below the national average (13.3%), whilst the remaining nine recorded above-average increases. Notable rises were observed in the Balearic Islands and Cataluña, with increases of 27.8% and 25%, respectively.

On the other hand, average prices per square metre at the national level grew by 1.3% during the second quarter of the year, to reach €1,314/m2, and that figure was far surpassed in the Balearic Islands (€2,189), País Vasco (€2,169) and Madrid (€1,883).

Average prices decreased in eight autonomous regions, falling particularly sharply in La Rioja (-34.0%), Navarra (-20.1%) and Castilla y León (-12.3%). Meanwhile, price rose in line with the national average in País Vasco (2.1%) and Murcia (2.5%). Nevertheless, the highest YoY increases in the average price per m2 were recorded in the Canary Islands (7.7%) and Madrid (4.9%).

Regarding the mortgage market, loans signed to acquire homes recorded double digit growth rates overall. The national average increase amounted to 26.1% (with 56,815 operations), with the exception of Navarra, where the number of mortgage operations fell by 0.7%. The autonomous regions with the highest growth rates were the Balearic Islands (48.7%) and Cataluña (45.7%) and the smallest rises were seen in La Rioja (6.7%) and Cantabria (16.8%).

The average mortgage amounted to €130,254

The average mortgage at the national level rose by 3.5% YoY, to €130,254. Despite decreases in Extremadura (-29.1%) and the Canary Islands (-16.1%), significant increases were observed in the average loan amount in Madrid (14.6%) and the Balearic Islands (10.6%).

Finally, the percentage of house purchases financed using mortgages stood at 46.3%. The autonomous region with the highest percentage of financed house purchases was País Vasco (70.4%), whilst the Community of Valencia (31.7%) saw the fewest financed house purchases.

Original story: El Mundo

Translation: Carmel Drake

Notaries: Average House Prices Fall By 5.1% In 2016

18 July 2016 –

According to data provided by the General Council of Notaries, house prices (measured in €/sqm) have decreased since the start of 2016. Specifically, average house prices decreased by 5.1% between January and May to reach €1,261/m2. The average price in May was the lowest recorded so far this year and represents a 1.6% decrease compared with the same month in 2015.

The market for house sales normalised in terms of the number of operations during the fifth month of the year after two months of significant increases. In May, 38,845 transactions were signed, up by 11.4% YoY, but slightly below the number of operations recorded in March and April. According to the data published by the notaries, during the five months to May, 181,056 house sales were recorded, which represents an increase of 16.1% compared with the period from January to May 2015.

Sales were led by second hand apartments, which recorded 26,880 operations, representing an increase of 16.8%; they were also driven by family homes, which rose by 9.2% YoY to 7,885 transactions. Nevertheless, the sale of new homes decreased by 22.6% with respect to the same period in 2015 with 2,495 homes sold.

“The increase in house sales in May reflects the path underlying the recovery of the real estate market” confirmed the notaries.

In terms of price per square metre, the notaries found that during the fifth month of the year, house prices decreased by 1.6% YoY to €1,261/m2. Since the start of 2016, when prices amounted to €1,330/m2 (the highest figure in the last year), prices have recorded a cumulative decrease of 5.1%.

Original story: (by David Marrero)

Translation: Carmel Drake

House Prices Rise By 10%+ In Most Exclusive Neighbourhoods

5 April 2016 – Expansión

Changing trend / Madrid and Barcelona are leading the recovery in the residential market, with house price increases of 9.2% and 7.5%, respectively during Q1 2016. The appraisal value of homes is now on the rise in every district of both cities.

(…). According to statistics from the appraisal company Tinsa, the value of residential properties increased by 1.4% during the first three months of 2016, with Barcelona and Madrid leading the charge.

The average appraisal value of (unsubsidised) homes per m2 in Barcelona amounts to €2,551/m2, which is 19% more expensive than the average in Madrid (€2,142/m2). This gap between the two cities has a simple explanation: not only have house prices been rising significantly faster in Barcelona than in Madrid, but also the Catalan capital has a higher population density than Madrid, which affects supply and demand, resulting in a higher degree of concentration. Moreover, barely any new residential properties are being constructed in Barcelona. (…).

The evolution of house prices in Madrid and Barcelona varies by neighbourhood. House prices rose in all 10 districts of the Catalan capital during Q1 2016, without exception and, for the first time, they also increased in all 21 Madrilenian districts. That has not happened since the real estate bubble burst.

The ranking

The highest price increases were concentrated in Barcelona. The two districts where average prices rose by the most were Les Corts (13.5%) and Sants-Montjuïc (12.2%). They were followed by the district of Salamanca, Madrid’s main real estate district, with an increase of 11.8%.

With an average price of €3,597/m2 and despite the heterogeneity of the neighbourhoods that comprise it, Salamanca is the district with the second highest prices of all of those analysed by Tinsa, behind only Sarrà-Sant Gervasi, which has an average price of €3,671/m2 (5.8% higher than in 2014). (…)

According to calculations from the consultancy firm Knight Frank, prices are going to rise by between 5% and 10% in prime areas in 2016, especially in five areas of the Madrilenian capital, namely Salamanca, Jerónimos, Chamberí, Justicia and El Viso. (…).

In Madrid, the most expensive districts after Salamanca are Chamberí (€3,444/m2 for subsidised homes, up by 5.4% compared with Q1 2015), Retiro (€3,270/m2, up by 4.3%), Chamartín (€3,312/m2, up by 1.7%) and the Centro, which has exceeded the €3,000/m2 threshold once again (€3,014/m2, up by 3.7%). All of the others sit below this psychological barrier, such as for example Moncloa-Aravaca (€2,793/m2 and 6.9%) and Arganzuela (€2,697/m2 and 8.5%).

The cheapest areas

The cheapest areas in Madrid are Villaverde (€1,232/m2), followed by Puente de Vallecas (€1,307/m2), Usera (€1,398/m2) and Carabanchel (€1,531/m2).

Average house prices will increase significantly in the Madrilenian capital during 2016, according to predictions by real estate analysts.

In Barcelona, Nou Barris is the district where house prices are lowest (€1,752/m2), followed by Horta Guinardó (€2,007/m2) and Sant Andreu (€2,105/m2). They are the only three places in Barcelona where prices are lower than the average price in Madrid (€2,142/m2), however, as is always the case in a market as fragmented as the housing sector, each area has its own micro-market. (…).

In any case, the forecasts are promising, in general terms. “In terms of both the number of transactions and prices, there has been a certain rebound effect following the collapse of the market that had not been seen for many decades. Now we need to wait for the stabilisation of the market, for similar data to that seen last year”, says Jorge Ripoll, Director of Research Services at Tinsa.

For the upwards trend to be maintained, the growth forecasts must be met and the labour market must improve. The other factors are already working on autopilot, at least in Madrid and Barcelona.

Original story: Expansión (by Juanma Lamet)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Notaries: House Sales Rose By 7.3% In September

17 November 2015 – Cinco Días

House sales rose by 7.3% in September with respect to the same month in 2014, according to data published yesterday by the General Council of Notaries, which has been corrected for seasonal variations. The uncorrected data reflected an even greater increase, of 8.7% YoY.

This information also reveals that the price of these transactions per m2 rose by 1.7%. Despite the fluctuations in the monthly figures, the notaries argue that the series reflects a recovery in house sales although the volume is still a long way below the figures seen before the crisis.

By type of home, transactions involving flats increased by 7.1% in September. This increase was primarily due to sales of second-hand homes, which rose by 13% YoY. Meanwhile, sales of new homes experienced a 19.7% YoY decrease.

On the other hand, sales of single-family homes increased significantly, by 14.7%.

In terms of prices, the average price per m2 amounted to €1,242/m2, representing an increase of 1.7%. This was driven by an increase in the price/m2 of flats (by 2.7% YoY) as well as in the price of single-family homes (by 2.3% YoY).

In the case of flats, the price per m2 of second hand homes rose by 2% to €1,359/m2, whilst the price of new homes increased by 13.6% to €1,632/m2.

In addition, there were 7,394 sales involving other types of property, up by 11.8%, of which 42.6% related to land and plots. The price of these transactions amounted to €201/m2, representing a decrease of 5.7% in YoY terms.

The statistics also reveal a 17.4% increase in the number of mortgage loans granted for the acquisition of properties in August, in line with the rise in the number of transactions, to 12,048.

In that month, the (average) size of mortgage loans remained constant at €122,993.

In terms of the constitution of new companies, there was a decrease of 4.4% in September to 7,062.

The average capital of these companies also decreased, by 14.4%, to reach €15,218.

Original story: Cinco Días

Translation: Carmel Drake