It’s difficult to predict how the property market here in Spain will react to these unprecedented times. So, with regards to the actual market, who knows what will happen next.
Looking at it positively, there are huge portions of the world now at home, every day in self-isolation, with not much to do but dream. While some may be able to work from home, others are all undoubtedly experiencing more downtime than ever before, and may use this as an opportunity to reevaluate their life, their plans for the future, and, perhaps, their dreams of finding a new life in the sunshine. So, whilst actual property enquiries and viewings have been paused right now, you can be sure that many people are passing the time each day house hunting online comparing the many different properties available in search of their dream home.
Face-to-face contact has temporarily stopped, and we have all become more reliant on technology, and we’re utilising it more than ever. It is allowing us to work, and stay connected with friends and family, while we remain at home. Will these enforced changes influence the way we view work in the future? How many employees and businesses will now realise that with an internet connection they can live, and work, from anywhere, and stay connected through video conferencing or the occasional commute when required?
So, once all of this uncertainty has passed, we might see a spike in enquiries, as people have decided that it is the right time to relocate, to make their move and find a place in the sun.
The timing of this wave coming into the market is the biggest doubt because, as of yet, we don’t know for certain when the current restrictions are likely to be lifted. The countries who have been affected later will essentially become pariahs and prevented from travelling by the others that have gone through the process and are cautiously reopening their borders again. In Spain, we will be desperately awaiting the return of the tourists as their spending is a major part of our economy.
Although at Survey Spain we’re still receiving a handful of enquiries for snagging surveys from people who are scheduled to go to the Notary, effectively now we can say that the market has stopped. It hasn’t fallen, it has just stopped completely. Once the activity starts again, we’ll see people who are desperate to sell and others who are keen to buy, with speculators in the middle offering low prices in the hope of making a quick profit.
I believe that although the market will see a drop, it won’t crash, and after this initial drop, it will then stabilise. The effects of the larger world economy, and especially currency exchange rates, are more difficult to gauge, and they could change everything that I’ve written. Personal, company, and national debt will have increased by the loss of income and the costs of the efforts to contain and prevent the viral spread.
However, one thing is for sure, as always, there will be winners as well as losers. So once again, “who knows what will happen next”.