Spain reigns supreme for Britons buying abroad

Spain reigns supreme for Britons buying abroad

Spain soars ahead with 46% of overseas mortgage enquiries in 2015.

Spain remains the top choice for Britons buying property abroad, according to Conti, the overseas mortgage specialist. The country accounted for just under half (46 per cent) of enquiries received by the company during 2015, despite France stealing a march on its lead during the second half of the year.

Spain’s property market crumbled at the height of the financial crisis, sending property prices spiralling. But after years of the market being depressed, it’s starting to pick up, with Knight Frank reporting a rise of 1.2 per cent in Spanish property prices from the third quarter of 2014 to the third quarter of 2015. And this is leading to renewed optimism among potential buyers.

The gap is narrowing, however, with France showing a strong performance in the fourth quarter of the year, when it accounted for 44 per cent of enquires compared with Spain’s 42 per cent. Over the course of 2015, however, it took a 34 per cent share, so is still playing second fiddle to its biggest rival over the longer term. A sluggish market, the growing value of the pound against the euro and the lowest mortgage rates in more than 60 years are making it affordable than ever to snap up a property across the Channel. And buyers are taking full advantage.

Maintaining third place in the hot spots list is Portugal, achieving a 15 per cent share of enquiries during 2015, up from 11 per cent in 2014. Property prices are on the up again at last, but are still generally below pre-recession levels, so investors, feeling more confident about the future and buoyed by the growing strength of sterling, are coming back to the market.

Clare Nessling, director at Conti, says: “It’s great to see the old favourites topping the list of overseas property hotspots. It wasn’t so long ago that the Spanish market was shrouded in doom and gloom, but the market has turned the corner at last and excellent buying conditions are luring investors back. We’re also seeing buyer’s markets in France and Portugal, and there’s been a general lift in confidence among buyers who are returning to these traditional markets in their droves.   

“Bargain prices and historically low mortgage rates are making it more affordable than ever to snap up a property in all three countries, but the biggest boost to buyers’ budgets has been the growing strength of the pound, providing them with more buying power and more pounds in the pot. Long may it continue.”

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Northerner 20 Oct 2016

Any views from outside the M25? No wonder politicians can't get the housing big picture when everyone seems to think that London is the yard stick, when it absolutely is not.

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Absolutely agree! Moreover property prices edged up with 0.7% this month as the market recovered from the initial Brexit hit

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Gary Das 06 Oct 2016

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Not sure I understand this! If Basildon and Hemel rose 68% and 52% respectively, why do they not appear in the top ten list, which appears only to feature those in the minus 20's!! Is it me?

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It can be stressful. More clarity is needed on the process, from a customer perspective and consideration should be given to using the Scandinavian model where the sales process is much quicker.

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I think that the main reason to buy garden purchases in last minute is because people always search for the best deal. In summer months there are abundance of seasonal goods and it means more low cost

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Buying a home often is more expensive than you expect. There are lots of hidden costs such as: stamp duty, surveys and valuations, mortgages etc. that can add more than 10% to the total bill

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