4 January 2017 – Expansión
According to Sociedad de Tasación, the price of new homes rose by 3.3% in 2016. It is the largest increase recorded since 2007 when, at the height of the real estate bubble, they rose by 5.1%. The price of new homes rose in every provincial capital and, for the first time since the crisis, “the rising trend was completely generalised”. Nevertheless, the price rises were moderate in almost every city. They only really stood out in Barcelona, with an increase of 6% and in Madrid, with a rise of 4.9%. Both cities continue to be the engines of growth in the sector.
The average price of new homes in Spain’s provincial capitals amounted to €2,120/m2 in December 2016 (up by 1.9% compared to the previous half year). The value of a typical 90. m2 home in the provincial capitals rose to €190,800. In other cities that are not provincial capitals, the average price of new homes amounted to €1,555/m2 in December, down by 26.6%.
“We think that 2016 was the year during which prices bottomed out, the cycle changed and the sector moved from stability to recovery, supported by price increases, transactions, the reactivation of off-plan house sales, the granting of mortgages and a decrease in the default rate. That makes us think that 2017 could be a good year for the real estate sector”, said Juan Fernández Aceytuno, Director General at Sociedad de Tasación.
Although all of the capital cities have left their losses behind, we are still seeing a two speed recovery in the residential sector. On the one hand, we have the large centres of demand and the tourist areas. On the other hand, we have the areas with the highest volumes of surplus new homes for sale, which still have several years of property digestion activity ahead of them. (…).
The index of confidence in the evolution of the real estate sector that Sociedad de Tasación compiles stands at 54.5 points and is continuing to rise from its neutral position of 50. This means that the indicator has grown by 10 points in two years, from 44.5 at the end of 2014. La Rioja (57.9), the Balearic Islands (57.9) and Madrid (56.9) have the highest confidence indices. Castilla-La Mancha (50.9), Castilla y León (50.8) and País Vasco (49.3) have the lowest.
Meanwhile, the appraisal company’s real estate effort index amounts to 7.4 years salary for the acquisition of an average home. The Balearic Islands is once again the autonomous region where buyers need the longest time to acquire a home – 15.8 years – and La Rioja the region where buyers take the least time – 4.6 years.
Most buyers are not new households, but demand is being nourished, above all, “from investors, in particular from people looking to buy to rent or reposition themselves”, according to the Director General of the appraisal company. As such, “the challenge is to analyse in detail the demand and understand why the cohort that makes up the sociodemographic profile aged between 25 and 35 years are not buying homes at the moment”, says Fernández Aceytuno. “It may be due to job instability, wages, geographic mobility, sociodemographic changes…but really, it is more important that we analyse who are not buying homes than who is”, he added.
Original story: Expansión (by Juanma Lamet)
Translation: Carmel Drake