Surge in British demand for Spanish property
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Despite all the uncertainty over the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union, the British appetite for Spain has not dimmed in the slightest. In the early days after the referendum vote it was widely assumed that British buyers might choose to stay at home until the final details of Brexit had been worked out.
However, according to information from Property Investor Today, “prime property sales in the country have grown year-on-year by 27%, and the number of British buyers is growing.”
The areas that the British and other overseas buyers are heading to are primarily Marbella, Ibiza and the Costa Brava.
Some 87% of sales in these areas this year are to foreign buyers, representing a 24% increase on 2017. Significantly, British, French and Scandinavian buyers make up the bulk of those from outside Spain looking for a second home.
Marbella and the British buyer
Marbella has for many decades attracted British buyers and this year even more came to purchase properties in one of the most famous areas of the Costa del Sol. British buyers accounted for 33% of property transactions in Marbella, compared with 27% of sales in Sitges, near Barcelona, 25% on the Costa Brava and 13% in Ibiza.
In some ways Brexit has contributed to the growth in the British buyers’ market. Buying before March 2019, when the UK leaves the EU, is an opportunity to move money into European assets before the final deal is signed.
All the uncertainty about what the deal may look like, or if there will even be a deal at all, has encouraged British investors to act now and avoid any possible restrictions on property purchases in Europe next year.
While this may feel counterintuitive to more cautious investors, it makes sense to many to act now rather than wait and find that they have more red tape to deal with when it comes to acquiring European properties.
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