Expat demand for homes in Spain is surging upwards, according to the latest official figures.
After years in the doldrums, the Spanish property market soared by 20% in the last three months of 2017 with more than 110,000 sales – the highest number of sales in the final quarter for three years.
And despite Brexit fears, British home buyers are still pouring into the market.
Around 15% of buyers were British – the highest level in more than a decade.
Anecdotal evidence from housing market watchers in Spain suggest many British expats want to settle in the country for the long term and are ready to trade in their British passports to do so if Brexit makes home-owning for Brits in Europe too difficult.
The statistics, from the Spanish Registrar’s Association, look as if British expats are ignoring Brexit.
The figures show British homebuyers registered 2,384 home purchases in the final quarter of last year – making the annual total 9,114 properties.
Expats from France bought 1,242, while Germans purchased 1,198 homes.
Favourite destinations for buyers
Although Spain is a popular destination for expats from all over the world, the British have a 15% share of the market, while France and Germany both take around 8% each.
The number of expat homebuyers from Belgium and Sweden also increased, but those from Switzerland dropped by 16%.
Demand from Germans was increased by 3.4%.
Within the market, some parts of Spain generate more interest from expats than others.
The favourite areas are Granada, which saw a 27% increase in home purchases, the Costa Blanca, and Balearics, each with a 17% rise, and Malaga with a 15% rise.
Many of the home purchases are for second homes or holiday lets, but a large number are for main homes.
Expat house purchases in Spain – 2017
Here’s a breakdown of Spanish property sales to foreign nationals in 2017:
|Rank||Country||Home purchases||Market %|
Source: Spanish Registrar’s Association