Record levels of tourism, a property market on the turn and a weak euro make Spain one of the most inviting places for Brits to buy a holiday home or retire to in 2015.
Spain’s popularity with holidaymakers is as high as it’s ever been, with the country attracting 22.5 million visitors between January and May this year, representing a 5.1 per cent hike compared to 2014. The figure, published by the Spanish Tourism Ministry, includes a record number of long-haul foreign visitors, namely 6.5 million of the total, a year-on-year rise of 6.8 per cent.
Meanwhile, property prices in established hot spots along the Costas, as well as in sought after areas of larger cities, are showing signs of rising since the start of 2015. More encouraging news is the increase in new developments being started. In the first two months of 2015, 7,640 new-builds were begun - a 48.2 per cent rise compared with the same period in 2014.
There is also evidence of a growing demand for new properties amongst international buyers. While there is still a raft of resale homes for sale, concentrated in areas along the Costa del Sol, Costa Blanca and Murcia, at the same time more discerning buyers who prefer new-build are returning to the market. For them, the small number of new projects available in established areas, including developments that were completed but stood empty before being refurbished by banks, are very desirable and right now represent good value.
The exchange rate is also being kind to UK buyers. Since the start of 2015, Sterling has gained around 10 per cent in value against the euro, with the rate moving from circa £1/€1.275 to £1/€1.405. This shift of around 10 per cent has made a €150,000 villa in one of the Spanish Costas more than £10,000 cheaper.