British market strengthens after Brexit certainty
The UK market has been one of the main sources of tourists and property buyers on the Costa del Sol ever since it first evolved as an internationally desirable destination in the 1950s. At times, British buyers made up as much as 65% of overall home sales in the area, but with the rise to prominence of other nations such as France, Belgium, the Netherlands and the Scandinavian countries, not to mention the unexpected Brexit referendum result of June 2016, that share has dropped markedly.
Though the impact of Brexit was never dramatic as such, and British property buyers on the Costa del Sol remained the single largest group, their share of the market dropped to around 15% in recent years, almost overtaken by Scandinavian and French-speaking homebuyers and investors. That number seems to be rising again now, for as the uncertainty that long hung like a shadow over the Brexit proceedings faded towards the end of last year. Those who had been holding their breath and waiting upon the outcome before taking any decisions on an overseas property purchase now began to move again.
The new year has therefore seen a marked increase in enquiries from potential UK buyers, with many real estate agents on the Costa del Sol reporting a busier than usual – and certainly busier than expected – January and start to the year so far. No official figures have yet been released, but our own experience and that of most of the agents we speak with is that the year has started well, partly thanks to a surge in interest from the UK, which has already resulted in an increased number of sales to buyers from this key market.
The British appetite for Marbella property has not diminished and the demand is certainly there, so with the pound also gaining a little in value (up ten cents against the euro compared with just a few months ago), British buyers are coming back in numbers. For the Costa del Sol a strengthening British market is always good news, yet this is now a highly diversified area in terms of the nationalities it attracts, which means that it is stable and no longer dependent upon a single nation or market.