Notaries: House Sales Rose By 26.6% YoY In January

16 March 2016 – Expansión

House sales shot up by 27.7% during the first month of 2016.

The number of house sales recorded an increase of 26.6% in January compared with the same month in 2015, with 27,568 operations, although that variation moves up to 28% if we consider the series corrected for seasonal effects, according to statistics prepared by the General Council of Notaries.

The annual increase in the number of sales was driven by an expansion in the sale of apartments (+27.7%), the increase in the sale of single-family homes (+22.6%) and the sale of other properties (+22% YoY).

In the case of apartments, the sale of unsubsidised homes experienced a 28.2% increase with respect to January 2015. Within this segment, the sale of second-hand flats rose by 32.8%, which contrasted with the 3.8% decrease experienced by the sale of new apartments.

In terms of average prices, the price per square metre of the homes purchased in January amounted to €1,303/m2, which reflects a YoY increase of 2%, due both to the increase in the price per square metre of apartments (+1.5%), as well as the rise in the price of single-family homes (+4.5%). In terms of flats, the price per square metre of second-hand properties amounted to €1,405/m2 (+2.1%) compared with €1,732/m2 (+1.2%) for new homes.

Meanwhile, there were 6,590 operations involving other properties during the first month of the year, which represents a YoY increase of 22%. Of those operations, 38.6% related to plots of land. The average price per square metre of those transactions amounted to €243/2 (up by +34.6% YoY).

In light of this data, the General Council of Notaries believes that the Spanish real estate market is continuing its recovery, which is also being reflected in the evolution of the mortgage market for the acquisition of homes. (…).

Original story: Expansión

Translation: Carmel Drake

Residential Sales Exceeded €51,852M In Total In 2015

14 March 2016 – Expansión

In this way, the amount of funds changing hands in the market for unsubsidised housing in 2015 continued the positive trend that it recovered in 2014, the year that saw the end of three consecutive years of decreases.

In the market for unsubsidised homes in Spain, €51,853.6 million changed hands in 2015, which represented an increase of 10.3% compared with the previous year (€47,022.1 million).

In addition, investment in housing returned to its 2011 levels, when €50,924.4 million was moved in the market and recorded the highest figure since 2010,when €80,782.2 million changed hands. The figure of €51,852.6 million corresponds to 382,691 transactions involving unsubsidised homes that were closed in 2015, up by 10.2% compared with a year earlier (347,170).

Specifically, sales involving second-hand unsubsidised homes amounted to €44,842.9 million (up by 12.9%), whilst sales involving new build homes were significantly lower, amounting to just €7,010.7 million (down by -3.8%).

Madrid was the region where the highest volume of transactions involving unsubsidised homes was recorded in 2015, with €10,103 million. Next in the ranking came Andalucía (€9,130.2 million), Cataluña (€9,387.9 million) and Valencia (€6,180.7 million).

Those regions were followed by the Balearic Islands (€2,857 million), País Vasco (€2,783.1 million), the Canary Islands (€2,217.4 million), Castilla y León (€1,616.4 million), Galicia (€1,514 million), Murcia (€1,188.8 million), Aragón (€1,178.7 million) and Castilla-La Mancha (€1,078.6 million).

Meanwhile, the regions where least money changed hands in the unsubsidised housing sector were: Asturias (€641.8 million), Cantabria (€590 million), Navarra (€527.6 million), Extremadura (€425.7 million), La Rioja (€299.7 million) and Ceuta and Melilla (€132.8 million between the two).

Original story: Expansión

Translation: Carmel Drake

Ministry Of Development: 100,000+ Homes Sold In Q2 2015

25 September 2015 – Cinco Días

Improved access to credit and the increase in employment have been spurring on house sales for almost a year now and the upwards trend continued in the second quarter of the year. In fact, more homes are now being sold than a year ago in 14 of the 17 autonomous regions, when just a few months ago, the increase was being observed in just half of the country. And for the first time in five years, more than 100,000 homes were sold in one quarter, a figure not seen since 2010. (…).

A shortage of new homes

The numbers published yesterday by the Ministry of Development showed that house sales grew by 13.9% during the second quarter of the year compared with the same period in 2014. In total, 104,530 house sales were recorded, the best quarter since 2010, thanks primarily to the boost in the market for second hand homes and the activity in large cities.

By type, 91,499 second hand homes were sold between April and June, an increase of 22.6% with respect to a year earlier. But the most significant result is that second hand properties accounted for 87.5% of the total market in Q2 2015 – the segment continues to gain weight quarter after quarter, as the number of unsold properties in new developments dries up. In fact, the purchase of newly constructed homes increased by just 2.5% YoY in Q2 2015, to 13,031 properties, a volume equivalent to just 12.5% of the total number of transactions closed during the quarter. Nevertheless, it is worth remembering that the classification between new and second hand homes is clouded by the fact that many of the latter are actually new; they are classified as second hand because they come from developments that were included in real estate portfolios owned by banks or Sareb (and were finished more than two years ago). (…).

The other revelation disclosed by the Ministry of Development’s statistics relates to the classification of unsubsidised homes versus VPOs, which confirms the trend that has been observed in recent quarters: increasingly fewer VPO homes were sold in Q2 2015 for two reasons. The first is that the Government’s most recent housing plan tightened the conditions whereby individuals can sell those kinds of homes and the second is because no new VPO developments have been initiated since 2012, since the Executive of the PP has been more focused on (the promotion of) rental housing and renovations. Evidence of all of this is that only 4,590 VPO homes were sold between April and June, i.e. VPOs accounted for just 4.4% of all operations.

By autonomous community, house sales increased in 14 regions, led by La Rioja, where the volume of activity shot up by 44.2%, the Balearic Islands (+30.1%) and Cantabria (+29.4%). At the opposite end of the spectrum, a YoY decrease in house sales was recorded in 3 regions: Navarra (-14.7%), Extremadura (-1.5%) and País Vasco (-0.6%).

Another one of the findings from these statistics is that a few large capital cities behaved like hotspots in the market. Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia were the cities in which the most homes were sold between April and June, with 8,252 homes, 3,590 homes and 1,975 homes sold, respectively.

The housing market also recorded a positive result when we look at the figures for the last twelve months (July 2014 – June 2015), with 382,471 house changing owners, an increase of 13.3% compared with the previous twelve months (July 2013 – June 2014). In terms of the nationality of purchasers, the statistics reveal that foreigners bought 17.7% of all homes sold during the quarter.

Specifically, foreigners residing in the country acquired 17,307 homes, an increase of 17.2%, whilst operations closed by non-resident foreigners amounted to 1,244, up by 5% compared with the same period last year.

The provinces in which foreigners purchased most homes were Alicante (4,141), Málaga (2,517), Barcelona (1,470) and Madrid (1,173).

Original story: Cinco Días (by Raquel Díaz Guijarro)

Translation: Carmel Drake

INE: País Vasco & Aragón Led Rise In House Sales In June

7 August 2015 – Expansión

Recovery / The real estate sector consolidated its recovery in June, thanks to the second hand market. The Páis Vasco and Aragón were the regions that saw the highest increases in the number of house sales.

“If the current trend continues, 2015 will be the year that marks the before and after in the real estate sector”. The residential market is continuing to build on its stabilising trend, after seven years in decline.

Yesterday, the National Institute of Statistics (INE) confirmed that: house sales soared by 17% in June to record ten consecutive months of increases. According to Manuel Gandarias, Research Director at, if the trend continues, 2015 will signal the start of the recovery in the sector.

This increase, which is the largest since March 2014, is due to strong growth in the sales of second hand homes (27,947 transactions), which shot up by 44.5% YoY. By contrast, the sale of new homes (6,631) plummeted by 30.6% compared with the same month last year.

Experts say that the second hand market, which accounts for 80% of all sales, is the true barometer of the current health of the sector. They also explain that the data recorded in June relates to transactions signed in April and the beginning of May.

Thanks to this surge in the sale of second hand homes, increases have been observed across the whole of Spain, except for in Galicia, where sales decreased by 6.5%. The greatest increases were recorded in the País Vasco (40.5%), Aragón (35.3%) and the Canary Islands (31.8%), although the region with the highest number of sales per 100,000 inhabitants was Castilla y León (718), followed by Aragón (639) and La Rioja (605). At the other end of the spectrum, Asturias and Galicia were the regions with the least activity, recording just 46 sales each per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Castilla-La Mancha, with 53. In absolute terms, Andalucía led the market, recording 6,129 transactions in total, up by 13.9% from a year earlier.

Positive climate

Real estate experts believe that the positive sentiment in the residential market has now taken root and that the end of the crisis is near. (…).

According to Gandarias, “the granting of mortgages, which is fundamental for the increase in house sales, is flowing better than expected. Households have become less indebted and now have more (disposable) income”. In fact, according to INE, the signing of mortgages to purchase homes increased by 10.9% in May and has now recorded a whole year of consecutive increases. Moreover, residential prices increased by 1.8% in 2014 and by 1.5% during Q1 2015.

In monthly terms, house sales grew by 3.8%, the first increase in the month of June since the start of the crisis. Almost 90% of transactions related to unsubsidised homes, which increased by 16.4% (27,493 transactions). Sales of social housing properties grew by 22.8% (3,085).

Original story: Expansión (by Juanma Lamet) 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Notaries: House Sales Up By 8.4% In May & Prices Down By 2.5%

16 July 2015 – El Economista

According to data from the General Council of Notaries, 33,504 homes were sold in Spain in May 2015, representing an increase of 8.4% YoY.

Sources at the General Council of Notaries stressed that despite the fluctuations in the monthly figures, the trend reflects a recovery in sales.

By type of home, sales of flats increased by 8.1% YoY and sales of unsubsidised flats increased by 8.8% YoY. This increase in the number of flats sold was driven solely by a rise in sales of second-hand flats (up 14.5% YoY), since sales of new homes experienced a sharp decrease (-21.5% YoY). Meanwhile, sales of single family homes increased by 9.6%.

In terms of average prices, the price per square metre of homes purchased in May was €1,226, reflecting a decrease of 2.5% YoY. This decrease in the price per square metre of homes was driven by decreases in the price per square metre of both flats and single family homes, which decreased by -2.2% and -2.3%, respectively, YoY.

In the segment for flats, the price of second-hand properties averaged €1,339/m2 (-0.4% YoY) and the price of new homes equalled €1,505/m2 (-10% YoY).

Finally, 8,285 other properties were sold in May (+11.3%), of which 38.2% related to land or plots. The average price per square metre of those transactions amounted to €127/m2 (+37.9% YoY).

Meanwhile, the evolution of the mortgage market for the purchase of homes reflects the recovery observed in the real estate sector, registering an overall increase in the total debt balance.

Thus, 25,738 new mortgage loans were granted in May, which represents a YoY increase of 11.5%. The average amount loaned was €137,093, reflecting an increase of 7.7% YoY.

Original story: El Economista

Translation: Carmel Drake

Strong Recovery In Madrid’s Market For New Homes

14 July 2015 – Cinco Días

The lack of new housing developments in Madrid in recent years means that the few blocks that have been built are being sold quickly, as the economic environment improves. So much so that the marketing company Foro Consultores has conducted the first comprehensive study of the new build segment, which not only estimates the size of the stock of new homes in the capital, it also calculates when that stock may be depleted if the current strong rate of sales continues.

The study, based on visits to all of the developments currently for sale and simulations of purchases or direct surveys at the sites, has focused on analysing the existing supply in new urban developments (Arroyo del Fresno, Montecarmelo, Las Tablas, Sanchinarro, Valdebebas, El Cañaveral, El Ensanche de Vallecas and Carabanchel), since those are the areas where the new builds are concentrated. Whole new buildings are the exception rather than the rule in the city centre and in the city’s more established neighbourhoods.

Foro Consultores begins its report by highlighting the number of new homes: currently the stock of new homes available for sale in Madrid amounts to 1,770, of which 781 are “free” and 989 are social housing (VPO) homes. That figure represents just 20% of the total number of buildings that have started to be built since 2010. Moreover, we are talking about very small numbers if we take into account that the study has analysed 102 developments in total, containing 4,001 “free” homes and 3,861 social housing homes, almost 8,000 homes, which came onto the market in recent years as turnkey properties or homes sold off-plan.

4.1 homes sold per development per month

The uptake of homes by region is not uniform. More than half of the new homes built in El Cañaveral, in the south of the city – the last development to get underway – have not yet been sold. Meanwhile, in other new neighbourhoods, such as Montecarmelo, less than 5% of the new homes or those under construction remain unsold. Furthermore, in Ensanche de Vallecas in 2007, there were almost 3,000 unsubsidised new homes for sale, but now there are just 166 left.

As well as the scarcity of supply due to the construction paralysis in recent years, one of the keys that explains the fast absorption of the stock is the acceleration in the rate of sales in recent months. Foro Consultores estimates that if no new developments come onto the market, then the excess would be depleted in just six months, at the current sales rate of 4.1 homes per development per month.

The study highlights that these 4.1 homes sold (per development per month) represents the sale of 5.3% of developments every 30 days, an average rhythm that has not been seen since 2003, and for unsubsidised housing, that figure is almost 5 homes per development per month, whereas during the crisis, it never exceeded one unit per month.

The study also shows that 79% of the developments on the market were started between 2010 and 2015, and of those 77% have already been sold.

In terms of prices, the report also highlights that in certain developments in El Cañaveral, the price of unsubsidised homes is lower than the price of VPO homes, which is not very typical in Madrid. “This shows that the social housing pricing model is out of synch with the market and that the promoters of unsubsidised homes have adapted better to the changes in conditions”, explained Foro Consultores.

In the areas analysed, the absolute prices of unsubsidised homes ranges between €77,000 and €657,000, with an average price of €273,021. Meanwhile, the prices of VPO homes range between €38,474 and €382,652, with an average price of €150,721.

Finally, the study concludes that by type of home, three-bedroom houses are in most demand. Meanwhile, the construction of studios and small flats, which were so fashionable during the boom, is now reducing.

Original story: Cinco Días (by Raquel Díaz Guijarro)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Ministry Of Development: House Prices Rise In 7 CCAA In Q1 2015

2 June 2015 – Cinco Días

The Canary Islands, Aragón and Madrid lead the ranking in Q1 2015.

In real terms, the average national increase was 0.9%.

In Spain as a whole, the average price of unsubsidised housing amounted to €1,457.90/m2 at the end of Q1 2015. This represents a negative variation with respect to the previous quarter (-0.36%) and the previous year (-0.11%), according to data published on Monday by the Ministry of Development.

However, this decrease did not take place in every region. Positive variations were recorded in some regions with respect to the same period in 2014. House prices increased in 7 regions: Canary Islands (3.56%), Aragon (1.9%), Madrid (1.67%), Valencia (0.69%), Extremadura (0.57%), Balearic Islands (0.1%) and Andalucía (0.05%).

The other regions experienced YoY decreases: Asturias (-6.53%), Castilla y León (-3.72%), Navarra (-3.15%), Galicia (-2.29%), País Vasco (-1.47%) and Murcia, Ceuta and Melilla (-1.35%).

At the national level, and in real terms, the price of unsubsidised housing experienced a YoY increase for the second consecutive quarter, rising by 0.9%.

If we look at the historic series of the Ministry’s statistics, the average price per square metre has decreased by 30.4% since its peak in the first quarter of 2008. The decrease has been even greater in real terms: 36.3%.

The five regions in which prices have decreased the most are: Aragón (-38.47%), Murcia (-38.28%), Castilla – La Mancha (-38.25%), Valencia (33.89%) and Cataluña (33.56%). At the other extreme (where prices have decreased the least) are the autonomous cities of Melilla (-5.19%) and Ceuta (-8.63%), followed by Extremadura (-16.75%), País Vasco (-20.52%) and the Balearic Islands (-22.74%).

In towns with more than 25,000 inhabitants, the highest prices per square metre are located in four regions. The two most expensive municipalities are in País Vasco, with San Sebastián leading the ranking (€2,996/m2), followed by Getxo (€2,663/m2). In third place is the Madrid suburb of Pozuelo de Alarcón (€2,489/m2). Calvía (€2,438/m2) in the Balearic Islands occupies fourth place and Sant Cugat del Valles (€2,433) in Cataluña is in fifth place. The cities of Madrid and Barcelona occupy sixth and seventh places (€2,411/m2 and €2,397/m2, respectively).

The cheapest places include Elda (€591/m2); Almendralejo (€592/m2); Tomelloso (€610/m2); Ontinyent (€611/m2); Jumilla (€620/m2); Novelda (€628/m2) and Credvillent (€632/m2).

Finally, the average price of subsidised social housing in Spain during Q1 2015 was €1,095.40/m2, i.e. 0.41% lower than during Q4 2014, whilst the variation with respect to the same quarter in 2014 was a decrease of -0.68%.

Original story: Cinco Días (by Amanda Andrades)

Translation: Carmel Drake

INE: House Sales Increased By 2.1% In March

11 May 2015 – Europa Press

House sales increased by 1.4% in Castilla-La Mancha in March with respect to the same month in 2014, to a total of 1,150 transactions, according to a report published by the National Institute of Statistics (Instituto Nacional de Estadística or INE) on Friday. It stated that the number of house sales per 100,000 inhabitants was 71 during the month in that autonomous community.

In absolute terms, Andalucía continued to lead the ranking in terms of the volume of house sales during the third month of the year, with 5,331 transactions, followed by Cataluña (4,334), Madrid (4,011) and Valencia (3,837).

In relative terms, the regions where the inter-annual rates of house sales increased the most was in Asturias (+39%), Galicia (+18.3%) and Castilla y León (+13.6%), whilst the highest decreases were recorded in the Balearic Islands (-21%), La Rioja (-20%) and Extremadura (-18.8%).

During the same month, the highest number of house sales per 100,000 inhabitants were in Valencia, with 98 and the Balearic Islands, with 87.

Spain as a whole

Nationally, house sales increased by 2.1% during March with respect to the same month in 2014, with 27,280 transactions. The inter-annual increase in March was much more moderate than in February, when house sales increased by more than 15%.

Even so, the indicator succeeded in recording its seventh consecutive inter-annual increase in March, due exclusively to a 32.8% increase in the sale of second-hand homes (20,683 transactions), given that the sale of new homes decreased by 40.9% with respect to March 2014 (6,597 transactions).

The data published by INE corresponds to sales registered in the property records based on public deeds signed in the months preceding the reference month.

During the first quarter of the year, the sale of homes rose by 9%, with a decrease of 35.6% in transactions involving new homes and an increase of 44.6% for second-hand homes.

If we look at the monthly data only (March versus February), the sale of homes decreased by 8.2%, compared with the monthly increase of 3.9% recorded a year earlier.

Most of the homes bought and sold during the third month of the year, specifically 89.7%, were unsubsidised homes. The sale of this type of home increased by 1.4% on an inter-annual basis, to 24,473 transactions, as the number of sales of subsidised homes amounted to 2,807, with an increase of 8% with respect to March 2014.

Total property sold increases by 3.8%

If we add together rural and urban properties (homes and other properties of an urban nature), the total number of property transfers amounted to 143,761 in March, up 3.8% from the same month in 2014.

In terms of sales, 4.2% more properties were transferred than a year earlier, whilst transfers from donations rose by 0.4%. The volume of ‘exchange transactions’ (operaciones por permuta) decreased by 2.6%, whilst the number of properties transferred by inheritance increased by 11% on an inter-annual basis.

According to INE’s data, the number of rural house sales increased by 10.1% in March in inter-annual terms, whilst the number of urban properties sales (which includes homes) increased by 2.9%.

In March, the total number of transferred properties registered in the property records for every 100,000 inhabitants was highest in La Rioja (678), Castilla y León (671) and Castilla-La Mancha (640).

The regions that recorded the highest increases in these transactions were Navarra (+9.9%) and Castilla-La Mancha (+9.7%), whilst the most marked decreases were recorded in Extremadura (-9.4%) and Murcia (-4.4%).

Original story: Europa Press

Translation: Carmel Drake

Notaries: House Sales Decreased By 10.9% In January 2015

17 March 2015 – El Mundo

House sales decreased by 10.9% in January 2015 with respect to January 2014 and prices fell by 6%.

On the up side, the volume of new mortgages increased by 11.4%.

The real estate statistics published by the General Council of Notaries relating to the month of January 2015, have somewhat dampened the euphoria that the housing market has been enjoying in recent weeks. The notaries report a 10% decrease in sales and a 6% year-on-year reduction in prices. Nevertheless, on the up side, the notaries indicate that during the first month of the year, mortgage lending increased by 11.4%.

According to these house purchase figures, there were 21,320 transactions in January, which represented a year-on-year decrease of 10.9%. “Despite this decrease in the monthly figures, the data actually reflects a stabilisation in terms of sales. This decrease may be explained by the end of the ‘base affect’ due to the normalisation of the figures following the conclusion of the period for tax deductions on purchases”, explain the notaries.

By type of property, the sale of flats experienced a year-on-year decrease of 11.5%, similar to the decline observed for unsubsidised flats (-11.4%). This decrease in the volume of transactions was due, primarily, to the significant decline in the sale of new flats (-31.8%). Meanwhile, the sale of second-hand flats shrank by 7.6% year-on-year. Regarding the sale of detached homes (viviendas unifamiliares), the number of transactions decreased by 8.4%.

Price decreases

In terms of average prices, the cost per square metre of homes purchased in January was €1,234, which represented a year-on-year decrease of 6%. This reduction in the price per square metre of homes was driven by both a reduction in the price per square metre of flats (-5.6% year-on-year), as well as a decrease in the price per square metre of detached homes (viviendas unifamiliares) (-6.4%).

In the flat segment, the price per square metre of second-hand properties amounted to €1,347 (-3.2% year-on-year) and of new homes amounted to €1,624 (-12.5% year-on-year). In terms of detached homes (viviendas unifamiliares), the average cost per square metre amounted to €1,001, i.e. 5.4% lower than in January 2014.

Mortgage lending is on the increase

Meanwhile, the number of mortgage loans granted to purchase homes increased by 11.4% year-on-year, and the average amount of capital loaned amounted to €126,989 (up by +9.2% year-on-year). In this sense, the percentage of home purchases financed using a mortgage amounted to 41.5%. Moreover, for this type of purchase, with financing, the mortgage amount represented an average of 76.2% of the appraisal value of the house financed.

Original story: El Mundo

Translation: Carmel Drake

INE: House Sales Accelerate Overall And Fall In 4 Regions Only

9 March 2015 – Cinco Días

The recovery in house sales is strengthening slowly, month after month, according to the statistics prepared by the National Institute for Statistics (INE) – refer to article published on Friday for high level data. (….).

(….). The sale of second-hand homes accounted for 73.1% of all sales recorded in January, whilst the sale of new homes accounted for 26.9% of transactions, heavily influenced by the scarce construction of developments that still afflicts the market. During the first month of the year, just 9,003 new homes were sold, 37.1% fewer than 12 months earlier.

Unsubsidised housing

As INE highlights in its notes, the data released on Friday relates to sales recorded in property registries for transactions closed in the months leading up to the month of January. In any case, even through there is a certain timelag, the statistics prepared by the notaries and the Ministry of Development (using the figures of the former), which lack this mismatch in terms of dates, show exactly the same trend towards a clear increase in the volume of sales. The recovery of employment and the re-opening of the funding tap, together with significantly lower prices, explain the increased volume of transactions.

By type of home, the majority of the homes sold during the first month of the year, specifically 88.8%, were unsubsidised. The sale of this type of home increased by 10.4% in year-on-year terms, to amount to 29,667 transactions. By contrast, 3,749 subsidised (VPO) homes were sold during the month, an increase of 3.3% with respect to January 2014. Another way of assessing whether this recovery is sustainable or not is to look at how this trend is evolving across the country. Although at first, only a minority of autonomous regions recorded positive annual rates in terms of house sales (those with a higher income per capita and with a higher percentage of tourist homes), now the situation has turned around (with only a minority of autonomous regions recording negative annual rates). In absolute terms, Andalucía continued to lead the ranking in terms of house sales in January, with 6,114 transactions, followed by Madrid (5,282), Cataluña (5,219) and Valencia (4,630).

Nevertheless, in relative terms, the regions that saw the highest increases in house sales were the Canary Islands (+56.7%), La Rioja (+48.3%) and Extremadura (+30%). Only four regions recorded annual decreases: Cantabria (-17.3%), Navarra (-17.2%), Galicia (-7.3%) and Castilla-La Mancha (-3.9%)

Original story: Cinco Días (by Raquel Díaz Guijarro)

Translation: Carmel Drake