British buyers head back to the Costas
With property prices up to 50 per cent below peak levels, househunters are snapping up Spanish bargains
There has been hushed talk of a recovery in the Spanish property market for about a year. Now though the pronouncements are louder and more resolute: confidence has returned. British buyers are back on the Costas.
Spain’s surplus of new homes — an estimated 400,000 — is slowly diminishing. Sareb, Spain’s “bad bank” created to shift the stagnant stock, sold more than 5,000 homes in the first four months of 2014, compared with 9,000 in the whole of 2013
Source: The Times2015 to see strong growth for properties in Spain
2015 to see strong growth for properties in Spain
The international financial markets are expected to be a key driver in the uptake of Spanish prime residential property during 2015, according to a new analysis.
The latest market reports from Lucas Fox International Properties, suggest there has been an increase in demand from UK, US and Swiss buyers thanks to the rise of the dollar, pound and Swiss franc against the Euro.
Conversely, the number of Russian investors is expected to dwindle as the rouble goes further into free fall in 2015.
‘With unemployment falling, the economy growing faster than predicted and property reaching the bottom, 2015 is set to be a pivotal year for Spain’s property market. Prices are on average 40% below what they were since the start of the crisis in 2007 and we predict a slow and steady recovery. This is an opportune time to invest,’ said Lucas Fox co-founder Alexander Vaughan.
The report says that prices in Barcelona have stabilised in the past 12 months and new international interest is impacting on demand for prime residential property. 2015 is expected to be the most significant year of recovery for the prime market in Barcelona since 2007.
Lucas Fox sales data shows that Middle Eastern buyers accounted for 12.5% of all purchases during 2014, followed by the Spanish and French both at 11%, the Germans at 8% and the British at 7%.
The bulk of prime market property purchases in Barcelona during 2014 was for investment use with two out of five buying for that reason, whereas in2013, the main reason for buying was for use as a primary or secondary residence.
The number of transactions in 2014 increased over 2013, with more properties above €1 million selling than in the previous year.
Courtesy of Propertywire.comBuy-to-let: bank offers 113pc mortgages – on repossessed flats in Spain
While banks at home are avoiding the lending excesses of the past – such as the notorious 100pc-plus loans that helped bring down Northern Rock – other European lenders are following a different tack.
In a bid to shift repossessed newbuild apartments, Spanish lender Banco Popular is offering a zero-deposit mortgage that also gives “cashback” to buyers up to 13pc of the property’s value.
In other words, a mortgage of up to 113pc of the property price.
Properties are available across the country. An apartment complex in Costa del Sol, for example, is being sold off piecemeal, including a £68,000 two-bedroom flat and £172,000 four‑bedroom penthouse.
The 113pc loan-to-value mortgage therefore reportedly lends an extra £22,360 on the four-bedroom penthouse without asking for a penny in equity.
The mortgage tracks European interbank rate “Euribor” plus 0.9pc for the first year, rising to 2.39pc plus Euribor afterwards.
By comparison, most Spanish mortgages tend to require a minimum 30pc deposit and interest rates start from 2pc above Euribor.
Unlike mainstream mortgages, these loans only apply to particular homes. Buyers can choose from a handful of Spanish apartments – all of which have been repossessed from bankrupt property developers and are now owned by the bank.