A new report on the Spanish housing market in 2011, prepared by Pompeu Fabra University and commissioned by the Tecnocasa propety group, finds that house prices have fallen 41pc since the peak.
That is much higher than the peak-to-present fall of around 20pc presented by the Government’s figures, which most international analysts and organisations use when trying to judge if Spanish property prices have fallen enough. Unsurprisingly, most of them assume that Spanish property prices are still heavily over-valued.
The Tecnocasa report is based on data from house sales brokered by their network of agents in Barcelona, Madrid, Malaga, Seville, Valencia and Zaragoza, using actual sales prices, rather than valuations. That might explain why Tecnocasa’s findings look more accurate than official figures.
The report also reveals that that house prices fell 19.2pc in 2011 alone, and that house prices declined at an accelerating rate in the last 6 months of last year.
“Far from being over, the adjustment in Spanish house prices has intensified in the last year,” says the report. “This is nothing but a reflection of a sector that has returned to paralysis after the fiscal stimulus of 2010 wore off.”
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 email@example.com.