The Spanish real estate sector in facts and figures

The key facts and figures of the Spanish real estate sector according to the Ministry of Public Works, Transport, & Housing

  • The price of free-market housing in Spain has dropped on average by 15.4% (more than 20% in real terms and as much as 24% in some provinces).
  • In municipalities with more than 25,000 inhabitants there has been an average 25% decrease, while in certain coastal towns the drop has been even greater. Such is the case in Marbella (40%), Torrevieja (31%) and Ibiza (29%), for example.
  • In 2010, property purchases by foreign residents in Spain increased by 20.8% over 2009.
  • In 2010, the British accounted for 23.4% of all property purchased by foreign residents in Spain.
  • In 2010, 491,000 property sales were recorded, 6% more than in the previous year and the first increase after three years of downturns; 60% of sales were in the Mediterranean coastal regions and in Madrid.
  • The number of empty housing units stands at less than 700,000 units in 2010; 61% of these are concentrated in the Spanish coastal regions.
  • The volume of finished housing has fallen by 60% in 2010 compared to the peak year of 2007, while newly constructed approved housing has fallen by 90% in 2010 from its 2006 high.
  • At present, the construction of subsidised housing (VPO) accounts for 50% of all new housing. As a result this type of housing now accounts for 11% of all residential real estate in Spain.
  • 1/3 of Spain’s more than 25 million houses are holiday homes.

+ Ministry of Public Works property information website (English)

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About Mark Stücklin

Mark Stücklin is a Barcelona-based property market analyst and consultant, and author of the 'Spanish Property Doctor' column in the Sunday Times (2005 - 2008). He can be reached by email on ms@spanishpropertyinsight.com.