The SPI House Price Index Tracker plots the progress of the six most-watched house price indices in Spain, and brings them together in one chart.
When it comes to Spanish house prices, it’s hard to find useful data. There is no shortage of house price indices published by different organisations, but they tend to be all over the place, based as they are on different source data and methodologies. Nevertheless, they do at least give us an idea of the general trend, especially when taken together. All the data is finally in for 2018, and as you can see from the chart above, all the indices I track were positive, with national average house prices up between 3.9% and 8.4% in 2018 depending on who you believe. At least they all agree that house prices rose last year, which would be the second year running that has happened, and the first time we’ve seen two consecutive years with all indices positive since the boom years more than a decade ago. So, at the very least, the data suggests that the Spanish property continued along the growth phase of the cycle last year.
The Tinsa index, based on their own valuations, also gives house price changes by type of region, showing both the Islands and the coast, where foreigners tend to buy, increasing more than the general index.
The next two charts from the Spanish Government’s Housing Department in the Ministry of Public Works (Fomento) illustrate the house price cycle we have been through since 2006, with prices going from growth to decline and back again. The second chart shows prices in real terms, that is adjusted for inflation. Prices have been rising most years since the recovery began, but nothing like they did in the boom years, and nowhere near enough to claw back the ground lost in the bust. Though some hot markets like the Balearics are now higher than they were in the boom years, the balance sheet of the Spanish housing market is still deep in the red, and the house price recovery on a national level looks somewhat feeble this time around.