Record sales show Spanish prime market on the up
Latest market analysis suggests that overseas demand for Spanish property is continuing to rise, in turn providing a good indicator of the positive potential for the country’s shared ownership industry.
In the first three quarters of 2017, leading Spanish property agencts Lucas Fox saw sales increase by just over 50 per cent across all its regions, most notably in Madrid (70%) and Barcelona city (38%) as well as in Valencia and Sitges, which saw sales grow by more than 100% in the first nine months of the year compared to the same period in 2016.
Third quarter results from the agency also showed that the average price of a prime property has risen significantly – from €709,111 in September 2016 to €802,000 in September 2017, an increase of 13% year-on-year.
The agents reported that 65% of its buyers were foreign with British and French buyers accounting for 18% of sales. Sales to US and Canadian investors have continued an upward trend, and now represent 8% of all Lucas Fox sales.
An interesting break down of the figures shows that 31% of Lucas Fox buyers purchased a secondary residence, 30% bought as an investment and those seeking a primary residence accounted for 26% of sales in the first three quarters of 2017. Recent figures from the Association of Spanish Registrars show that foreign demand for Spanish property rose by 11.6% in Q3 2017 and currently represent 12.9% of the Spanish housing market.
Lucas Fox has also released its figures for October 2017, which suggest that the knock-on effect of the Catalan referendum has so far not had a major impact on the property market in the region. Lucas Fox Barcelona registered an increase in sales of 27% in October 2017 compared to the same month last year. Levels of interest in other major cities such as Madrid and Valencia also increased significantly in October, with enquiries up by 13% and 15% respectively.
Alexander Vaughan, Lucas Fox’s co-founder, said: “Our third quarter results make for extremely encouraging reading. In central Madrid and Barcelona city the property market is buoyant and we believe there will be further growth in pricing and the number of transactions the coming years.
“In Catalonia, following the events of 1 October we saw a temporary dip in the level of enquiries from national and international buyers but these have already recovered to 2016 levels. Some investment buyers in Barcelona city are choosing to put their purchase on hold until after the elections on 21 December but we are continuing to close high-end deals with national and international clients.
“To date there has been no impact on closing prices. We believe that the most likely outcome will be a renegotiation of the conditions of Catalonia’s financial autonomy and that the market in Barcelona city property market will soon recover to pre referendum levels. In the sought-after coastal areas of Catalonia such as Maresme, Sitges and the Costa Brava we are having an exceptional last quarter, significantly up on the same period in 2016.”
Rod Jamieson, head of Operations & Sales at Lucas Fox, said: “The Spanish new build sector has been the big success story of 2017 so far. Compared to most Northern European cities, new homes in Spanish cities continue to offer good value for money with prices for prime city centre developments starting from around €6,000 per square metre in Madrid and Barcelona.
“The investment potential and lifestyle advantages are continuing to attract international buyers from around the world and national buyers are also increasingly keen to buy now before prices rise further.”