According to a study carried out by the BBV bank in Spain and quoted yesterday in the Spanish newspaper El ABC, 150,000 houses are purchased by foreign residents in Spain each year – adding up to 15% of the overall property market.
The housing market in Spain is double (in terms of real estate sales) what it was ten years ago and there have been reports that it will be slowing down in the coming years,at least in urban areas. The article contains a few interesting figures. 1.800,000 houses in Spain belong to foreign tourists, attracted to the country because of the climate, housing prices and the quality of life.
More and more tourists are purchasing second homes here in Spain each year (90.000), and the number of immigrants living and working in Spain buying homes is also on the rise (45,000 per year).
Most of the houses bought by tourists from other European Union member states are situated along the Mediterranean coast or just a little way inland where property is generally cheaper – the difference in price between property in coastal areas and property in rural areas is considerable. In Campello a beautiful coastal village on the Costa Blanca for example, a small two bedroomed attached house with sea views and a shared garden and pool area can cost around 200.000 Euros, whereas a large villa with its own garden and pool located 20 km or so inland can cost half that amount.
Most EU nationals buying property in Spain prefer areas in which other nationals of their home country are already living. The Spanish refer to these areas as “colonias“. While many do not need to integrate into Spanish life and culture because their neighbours speak their own language and their local shops belong to expats too, more and more EU nationals use the Spanish health service, for example this experience of a British man who recently had heart surgery in Spain.