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5 reasons to attend to a property exhibition

5 reasons to attend to a property exhibition

If you are thinking of buying a home in Spain, you’ve probably started to do some research on the Internet. You will have seen websites, real estate agency pages and even big real estate portals like Idealista, Fotocasa and Rightmove Overseas. So, why bother going to a property exhibition?

Here are five good reasons why going to a property exhibition will help you to find the home you are looking for, even though you might enjoy searching online.


Foreign buyers, except for Britons, are buying more than in the pre-recession period

Foreign buyers, except for Britons, are buying more than in the pre-recession period

One of the conclusions drawn from the presentation on international marketing challenges given by Alfredo Millá, Sonneil’s CEO (www.sonneil.com) at the last Barcelona Meeting Point in Barcelona, is that buyers coming from the major countries purchasing second homes in Spain are buying more than in the pre-recession period. Especially Northern countries, which have increased their volume of purchases by 450%, compared to the year 2006, followed by Belgians, 240% and French, 54%. All that according to the data provided by the Land and Mercantile Registrars Association of Spain’s Statistics Reports.

However, the main market, UK, has remained slack in the last few years. After the market “collapse” during the period from 2007 to 2009, UK market is picking up again now in 2014, although it is still far from reaching the pre-recession figures.

It is shown in greater detail in the chart below:

Source: own formulation on data from Land and Mercantile Registrars Association of Spain’s Statistics Yearbooks

British clients achieved 38% share of the foreign market in Spain. They stand for 15% now.

Source: own formulation on data from Land and Mercantile Registrars Association of Spain’s Statistics Yearbooks

Nevertheless, according to the research carried out by Sonneil, there are some hopeful signs. British market begins to rebound in 2014. Its weight on the total amount of foreign purchases is growing back again and the macro-economic indicators are positive after some years of decrease and stagnation.

These are the main aspects pointed out by Sonneil:

  • According to UK’s ONS (Office of National Statistics) The percentage of unemployed people in the UK has fallen from 2.7 million in 2011 to be slightly less than 1.9 million today, close to reaching 1.7 million as in the period from 2006 to 2007.
  • The current Exchange Rate is around 1.27, far from the parity achieved in 2008, the collapse date.
  • According to ONS UK’s GDP should grow by 2.8% and will approach the pre-recession period. In fact, the growth rate in the first three quarters of 2014 reaches 2.5%. The following chart shows the development.

Source: Sonneil’s formulation on data from Office of National Statistics UK

To sum it up, the second home market in Spain greatly depends on UK’s clients, in fact, due to its great weight on the market, it will mean a true path out of the coastal properties crisis in Spain. The amount of sales stills remains below the ones of the days of wine and roses, but it seems that the recovery from the crisis is clearly coming.

Brexit consequences, should you be worried?

Brexit consequences, should you be worried?

Antonio Verdonces Vivancos from My Lawyer in Spain has collaborated with us and written this clear article about the UK referendum and the possible Brexit consequences. As this might be an issue you could be worried about regarding your buying plans in Spain. This article can surely dispel some of the fears and questions you might have.

Should you be worried about Brexit consequences?

Some prospective investors may have concerns about how and when the result of a Brexit could affect them or their investment. Along past years, buyers of many other nationalities have bought properties in Spain as holiday homes or for their retirement. It should be noted that buyers from countries such as Germany, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium, Netherlands, France, Russia and others have made the market much more stable and wider.

Realistically would a positive vote to exit the EU affect a homeowner or a prospective buyer?

Exchange Rate between GBP and Euro

Pound Sterling exchange rate decreased after Scotland was given a referendum on whether it would remain within the United Kingdom, as the stability of the UK looked uncertain. This is what we are likely to see transpire now. As uncertainty unfolds on Britain’s decision whether they should remain in the EU the Pound is likely to decrease as markets react negatively to uncertainty.

The most realistic scenario reported by Open Europe tells us that a Brexit is a more finely balanced calculation. If economic growth were to continue after the exit, the Pound and Euro exchange rates could regain strength.

What next?

If Britain left the EU they could potentially negotiate what has been described as an “amicable divorce”. They could  retain strong trading links with the remaining EU nations.
In fact, the UK is (and will continue being) a member of the European Economic Area, and this gives the UK:
• Equal access to the single market;
• Leaves Briton’s free to live, work and study in the 30 EEA states.
• Like Norway, the UK would be free from EU rules on Agriculture, Fisheries, Justice and Home Affairs.

Furthermore, remaining a part of the EEA leaves options to negotiate a comprehensive Free Trade Agreement with the EU. That would allow the UK not only more freedom to provide financial services but also to have more say over how rules and standards are implemented.

This exact position is held by Norway; not belonging to Euro zone or the EU, but being part of EEA. We all know many cases of Norwegian citizens buying properties, enjoying holidays and retirement, and paying taxes in sunny Spain.

We should not forget that there is also the example of Switzerland; a country whom is not a member of the EU nor the EEA, but is a part of the single market by negotiating trade treaties on a sector by sector basis. Swiss nationals also have the right to live and work in the UK as other EEA nationals. Surprisingly, Switzerland is a member of the Schengen Treaty. Nonetheless, as the country voted to restrict free entrance for EU citizens in 2014, its role will probably be revised.

In summary, I believe the current exchange rate volatility is more of a concern when buying a property in Spain rather than the future status of Britons living in Spain or the EU. In short term, there are means to mitigate the effect of a weaker Sterling and, at the same time, other aspects such as an attractive price, right location or each one´s own lifestyle and plans are also very important factors to be considered.

Guest Author:

Antonio Berdonces Vivancos
Lawyer | Abogado