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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.