The number of foreigners buying a property in Spain during 2020 fell by 26.5% according to the latest data just released by Spain’s National Institute of Statistics (INE). Whilst overall property sales across Spain fell to their lowest level in a decade. As the global Covid pandemic put a massive dent in buyer mobility and economic confidence in general.
In total 46,300 properties were sold to foreign buyers during the course of last year. However, despite this drop British buyers on-going love affair with Spain remained relatively undimmed – as purchasers from the UK comprised the largest group of overseas investors by nationality. Accounting for 6,043 sales – or 13% of all foreign sales. Followed by French buyers (8% with 3777 sales) and German nationals (7.8% with 3589 completions).
Spanish Property Sales To UK Nationals Fall By 44%
Year on year the number of properties in Spain purchased by UK nationals fell by 44%, from 8758 in 2019 to 6043 in 2020, according to the INE statistics. Figures that come as little surprise given the imposition of travel restrictions between the UK and Spain, along with the closure of notaries during the emergency and further complications and uncertainty caused by Brexit.
Total Spanish Property Sales Fall By 17.7%
Overall, 415,748 property sales were completed by all nationalities, including Spanish residents, during 2020 – a 17.7% decrease on 2019 figures. A figure that still pales in comparison with the massive shock delivered to Spain’s property market during the 2008 financial crisis when sales crashed by 29%.
Some Spanish regions fared better than others during the pandemic. The largest falls were recorded in key tourist regions such as the Canary Islands, where sales fell by 21.9% during 2020. Along with the Balaerics (down by 23.2%) and the Community of Valencia (down by 22.1%).
Northern regions with much smaller foreign tourist and property markets such as Asturias and Extremadura fared better, recording falls of 9% and 6.5% respectively.
Long-Term Rental Rates Fall
As well as impacting the number of house sales, the pandemic has also created a fall in rental revenues for landlords, according to leading national newspaper El Pais. Who monitored data accumulated by property portals such as Fotocasa and Idealista. As the collapse of tourism in 2020 led to a surge in the supply of properties being placed on the long-term rental market, in turn creating a fall in rental prices.
Whilst falling household incomes also resulted in some renters opting to trade down on their accommodation in order to reduce their monthly outgoings.