Holiday-home glut is one of Spain’s biggest problems

The glut of coastal holiday-homes is the biggest problem bedeviling Spain’s property market, new figures from the Government (Fomento) confirm.

Of Spain’s glut of 687,387 new homes on the market, 65pc, or 446,800 of them, are located in coastal provinces, many of them built with holiday-home buyers in mind.

Coastal provinces have an average of 20,521 new homes for sale, compared to just 8,425 for inland provinces inland; that is, 59pc less.

That said, the average conceals wide differences in inventories on the coast, ranging from 60,000 in Barcelona province (mainly primary residencies), to just 2,897 in Cantabria, North Spain.

The Valencian Community, home to the Costa Blanca and Costa Azahar, has the biggest problem, with a whopping 133,023 new homes on the market.

Deep discounts

To shift stocks, developers are resorting to increasingly large discounts, reports the Spanish press.

Metrovacesa, for example, is offering discounts of 51pc on selected units in its La Romana development in Marbella on sales before July 31st. It’s worth taking a moment to look at what they are offering. A few kilometres from Marbella, 3-bed semi-detached homes of 170m2 for just €220,000, down from €450,000 (pictured below).

Metrovacesa was one of Spain’s biggest developers, but now belongs to its banking creditors, and has given up building homes.

Banks are going even further to dump stock

For example Casaktua, the property division of the Spanish bank Banesto, is promoting discounts up to 70pc.

With Spanish consumers down and out, both banks and developers are pinning their hopes on foreign buyers, according to reports in the Spanish press.



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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