Sunday, June 28, 2009

Distressed sales in Spain offer bargains

Now could be a good time to buy property in Spain as recent figures indicate that in April, the cost of housing fell by ten per cent and buyers can pick up many bargains due to the economic climate, it has been reported.

According to reports from appraisal company Tinsa, the Mediterranean coast areas were the hardest hit and prices dropped regularly over the last 12 months, down 1.2 per cent in April last year, and then 8.3 per cent in August. The steepest decline was in December 2008, when prices were 14.3 per cent lower than they were in the same period during 2007.

Second home buyers who are looking to purchase Spanish property could be able to take advantage of the current slump in the market. According to the National Institute of Statistics, the number of property transactions in Spain has slumped and the housing sector as a whole has shrunk by more than half in the last two years. However, this could present a number of cash-ready overseas property investors, as the drop in sales may entice sellers to reduce their asking prices.

Meanwhile, Professor Gonzalo Bernardos of Barcelona University recently predicted that values would stop dropping in most places in Spain before the end of next year.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Andalusia holidays are getting even better

Spanish tourism authorities are planning to promote southern Spain as a city-break destination that is perfect for villa holidays, it has been claimed.

According to Typically Spanish, Andalusia authorities had invested 2.1 million to make its beaches immaculate and even bring in some new soft white sand to top it all off and nearly 300,000 cubic meters of sand is to be used in the project. Other developments include a new terminal and runway at the Pablo Picasso airport, which is expected to be completed by 2010. The port area in the city will also be restored and a new harbor terminal will be fashioned to attract large cruise liners to dock at Malaga.

According to Euro Weekly reports, Plan de Seguridad Vial 2008 has been given the go-ahead by Malaga's provincial government, with around 300,500 euros set aside for road improvements in the regions of Antequera, Valle del Guadalhorce, la Serrania de Ronda and the region of Axarquia.

Meanwhile, Andalusia recently received the Best Golf Destination in Europe award at the International Golf Travel Market in Marbella, according to the Spanish Tourist Office.

According to Severiano Ballesteros, The most famous course in the region is Valderrama Golf Club in Cadiz and it is ideal for playing golf all year-round with impressive fairways as well as its warm climate and stunning scenery. Other notable courses in the region include Monte Mayor Golf Course and La Quinta Golf and Country Club.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Distressed sales in Spain offer bargains

Now could be a good time to buy property in Spain as recent figures indicate that in April, the cost of housing fell by ten per cent and buyers can pick up many bargains due to the economic climate, it has been reported.

According to reports from appraisal company Tinsa, the Mediterranean coast areas were the hardest hit and prices dropped regularly over the last 12 months, down 1.2 per cent in April last year, and then 8.3 per cent in August. The steepest decline was in December 2008, when prices were 14.3 per cent lower than they were in the same period during 2007.

Second home buyers who are looking to purchase Spanish property could be able to take advantage of the current slump in the market. According to the National Institute of Statistics, the number of property transactions in Spain has slumped and the housing sector as a whole has shrunk by more than half in the last two years. However, this could present a number of cash-ready overseas property investors, as the drop in sales may entice sellers to reduce their asking prices.

Meanwhile, Professor Gonzalo Bernardos of Barcelona University recently predicted that values would stop dropping in most places in Spain before the end of next year.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Lifestyle buyers in Spain enjoy a home away from home

Investors looking to rent out their properties in Spain to tourists and holiday home buyers could be buoyed by news that the Iberian nation remains a Holiday favorite.

According to Homes Worldwide, the Iberian nation continues to attract Britons, despite the economic downturn and the falling value of the pound against the euro.

Murcia was cited as an area that offered good value for money, particularly when compared to other more established regions, such as the Costa Blanca. Madrid and Barcelona are particularly good for low-cost breaks in the sun. This could be welcome news for overseas property buyers looking for homes in Spain, with low-cost housing and a strong tourist industry, overseas investors might be able to pick up a bargain in the Iberian nation.

According to Carmen Hernandez, market analyst at the Spanish Tourist Office in London said that Almost 90 per cent of Britons who traveled to Spain in 2008 had already been there on Holiday before and growing competition from other Mediterranean countries is not denting the appeal of Spain.

According to Spanish Property Insight, recent study by Network of Property Experts revealed that prospective purchasers of Spanish real estate could see the valuation of homes fall by as much as 40 per cent for some resale. The reduction in property transactions has pushed vendors to drop their asking prices; if in the past this was done with reductions of two to three per cent now the drop is around 30 per cent to 40 per cent.

The decline in the number of transactions was attributed to the tight lending criteria and harsher conditions for mortgage credit. However, this could present a number of cash-ready overseas property investors, as sellers reduce their asking prices.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Spanish house hunters will soon find an unusual location to pick up a new home

Property investors will soon find an unusual location to buy a new home in Spain at a heavy discount as Grupo Santander SA, one of Europe's largest banks, is getting ready to launch a Web site.

At the end of 2008, Santander, including Banesto, its Spanish retail bank, had property valued at some €3.8 billion ($5 billion) on its balance sheet, nearly 1,300 homes it picked up in 2008 when developers to whom it had lent money defaulted on their loans. The bank has as many as 950 new homes to the public at a 20% discount to market prices. That comes after the Spanish bank sold 350 homes to its own employees on the same terms.

"With the economy worsens, property-loan defaults on the rise and many European banks are knee-deep in loan-restructuring plans. The main aim is to overtake the situation and to avoid some of those loans becoming nonperforming loans, avoid lengthy bankruptcy proceedings involving many creditors and to help clients avoid bankruptcy," says a Santander spokeswoman.
Many banks remain hesitant to sell despite the increasing pressure from rising defaults on commercial-property loans. But the longer the recession lasts, the greater the pressure will be on the banks to sell. Mike Birch, a loan-workout specialist and founder of REAM Capital Partners, a real-estate asset-management company said "They may not be able to hold onto the property because of their need for capital". "Ultimately, I don't think the banks will have the luxury of hanging on to the property for long."

However, Philip Cropper, director of CB Richard Ellis' real-estate finance services in London says "The banks on the whole want to avoid selling too cheap and allowing someone else to profit on the recovery."

Saturday, June 6, 2009

El Puerto de Santa María - blend of beautiful weather, culture and peace

Lifestyle buyers considering a purchase in Spain are suggested to purchase a holiday home in El Puerto de Santa María in Costa de la Luz.

The Costa de la Luz (Huelva) beaches tend to be long and wide, with fine golden sand. Places like the town of El Puerto de Santa Maria offer well-preserved beaches that are not as crowded as those near property on the Costa del Sol. This area is popular with tourists from Seville, other parts of Spain and international travelers, backpackers and campavaners and provides a great opportunity to discover the 'real Spain'.

El Puerto de Santa María is a picturesque and lively Spanish town situated on the Costa de la Luz, 20 minutes across the bay from Cádiz. There are 22 km. of Atlantic coastline around the town, with 8 beaches of fine golden sand. The town is an important fishing port with a number of historic buildings including the Castle where Christopher Columbus stayed, a palm lined alameda, a maze of narrow bustling streets, a lively central market , natural parks, Casinos, nightclubs and Flamenco bars

"Undoubtedly, the first thing that attracts tourists to El Puerto de Santa Maria is its golden beaches and wonderful weather," the online portal stated.

Those who purchase property on the El Puerto de Santa María could find the right blend of beautiful weather, culture and peace.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The latest sign indicates Spanish recession may be finding a floor

Bank of Spain data revealed that the country's recession may be finding a floor as Spanish bad debt rose at the slowest rate in 15 months in March.

The volume of bad debt rose by 769 million euros ($1.04 billion) in March, the least since December 2007 and a fraction of monthly increases of up to 9 billion euros in the first months of 2009. The bad loans data mirrored recent indicators ranging from consumer confidence to house sales that fell at slower rates in past months, the Bank of Spain reported.

A small advance in the monthly number of new mortgages sold in March has prompted optimists to call the bottom of the Spanish property market. The rate of decline appeared to slow down compared to monthly falls of between 30% and 46% since November last year. Besides, the figures, from Spain's National Institute of Statistics (INE), showed that there were 52,439 residential mortgages signed in March, an increase of 1.2% on the number signed in February, which in turn was slightly better than January.

According to the latest house price analysis from Knight Frank, the Spanish property market isn't faring too badly compared to some other countries. Housing market in countries like Norway, Ireland, Denmark, Poland, Hong Kong, Estonia, UK, United States, Singapore, Dubai and Latvia had whopping annual decreases between 9% and 36% while Spain had a modest loss of nearly 7%.

The Knight Frank report has some reason for overseas investors in Spain to be cheerful. Despite a glut of unsold property hanging heavy in the Spanish housing market, a rising number of the industry analysts believe that the bottom of the market could soon be in sight as discounts start to attract international buyers.

Agencies such as Atlas International and Andalucian Dream Homes (ADH) are just few of the latest companies to offer their database price cuts of at least 30%. "We do feel that the market is bottoming out now as buyers are attracted by the large discounts on offer," said ADH's David Honeyman.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Long term prospects for Costa Brava property look reasonably good

It's been the dream of millions - People from all over Europe looking for villas and apartments by the sea in sunny Spain. Now could be a good time to buy second home in Coastal Spain as recent figures indicate that in the 12 months leading up to April, the cost of housing fell by ten per cent.

According to data from appraisal company Tinsa, coastal areas were hardest hit, along the Mediterranean coast, prices dropped regularly over the last 12 months, down 1.2 per cent in April last year, and then 8.3 per cent in August and 14.3 per cent in December , which could mean that homes on the Costa Brava represent particularly good value.

François Carrière Pastor, managing director of the John Taylor agency in Spain said Spain is a tricky market in the current climate. He said that Prices in Barcelona have fallen by 15 percent to 20 percent and the nearby Costa Brava has seen as much as a 35 percent drop.

Carrière Pastor said, "it wasn't really necessary to do much marketing in the past because homes sold without it," Now, finding clients is more difficult and the market is much tougher. Developers who used to do their own marketing are now going to agents for help and glossy brochures are becoming a very important marketing tool."

The housing market is just starting to turn down on the Costa Brava. There will also be the distress sales, where vendors of attractive properties have to accept a low but reasonable offer for a quick sale, and it is worth being in the market for that reason alone.

Regardless of the ups and downs in the market, the long term prospects for property on the Costa Brava look realistically good. The best parts of the Costa Brava have not been awfully over-developed and not flooded with newly built properties, so the market is not fundamentally flawed. Costa Brava attracts affluent buyers from both Spain and the rest of Europe, so demand is reasonably well diversified. Purchasers who are not that concerned about financial returns, and just want a home to use and enjoy, then 2009 could be a great time to buy attractive property in the Costa Brava at a reasonable price.