Surplus housing in Spain

The Minister for Housing, Beatriz Corredor, announced last week that there were around 700,000 unsold houses and flats in Spain at the end of 2009 which is 87,000 more than at the end of 2008. According to Corredor this figure will begin to decrease gradually.

This year is the last year in which buyers will receive tax deductions for the cost of buying a house and therefore it is expected that house sales will rise compared to the last couple of years. However, many people are asking what will happen over the next few years. It is estimated that in order to absorb the surplus stock of housing at least 1,200,000 buyers are needed (and in most cases houses and flats are purchased by two buyers). And for the number of surplus houses and flats to go down, no more property should be built, which is bad news for the Spanish construction industry, one of the sectors worst hit by the crisis.

Faced with a situation where the surplus stock of flats and houses is at a maximum and many financial entities have a portfolio of properties for sale easier access to mortgages is believed to be crucial to the recovery of the housing market.

People interested in buying a property are advised to keep a close eye on offers available.