Buying property in Spain: How and why to get involved
With a broad appeal for visitors from the UK and across Europe, Spain is not only a prime tourist destination. It’s also increasingly popular with property investors who are poised to reap the benefits of low property prices and enduring popularity. And with property prices poised to turn upwards in the coming months, investors in the know may consider this a good time to make their move.
We take a look at why you might want to get your foot on the Spanish property ladder and how you can go about it.
The tourism industry is deeply embedded in Spain’s history, particularly in the major cities and along the famous Costa del Sol. As a result, when you invest in property in these established locations, you won’t have to expend any energy persuading people to head over, there’s a ready-made market of rental clients waiting to be tapped. Besides this, there is already a well-developed tourism infrastructure in place. The country’s good roads and multiple regional airports, alongside its sun, its beaches, and its food, are appealing to tourists from all over Europe, so the client-base is diverse and well protected against any regional ebbs and flows. Putting aside the qualitative benefits, figures from the OECD suggest that Spain has one of the most undervalued property markets in the world. As a result, Spain is firmly at the forefront of interesting property opportunities in Europe and investing in a holiday home or rental property now could represent a bargain for the savy investor.
What you’ll pay for property in Spain
As in many parts of the world, house prices in Spain crashed dramatically with the onset of the global financial crisis in 2008. For the most part, prices are yet to rebound to their pre-crisis peak, which is actually positive news for those looking to buy an investment property. Snapping up a property at a discount price now could pay dividends in the long term. Looking at the regional picture, prices per square metre are understandably highest in the capital Madrid and cultural hotspot Barcelona, at an average price of 2,198 euros and 2,335 euros per square metre respectively in 2015. Along the coast, Malaga in the southern Costa del Sol is at the top end of the price range with average prices of 1,663 euros per m2, while still popular Valencia (1,300 euros per m2), Alicante (1,284 euros per m2) and Murcia (1,146 euros per m2) could be good coastal options for budgets with less flexibility.
Choosing the best Spanish property for you
It can be surprisingly easy to get sidetracked by your personal preferences when buying a property in Spain for investment purposes. Remember, just because you might happen to enjoy an isolated inland spot for your holiday, it doesn’t necessarily represent the best market for potential holiday renters. While it is important to choose somewhere you’ll enjoy taking your own holiday, it is nevertheless essential to consider the objective advantages of one property over another. Think about the property’s proximity to beaches or the city centre, its transport links and distance from the airport, and also take into account any onsite facilities such as pools or shops. It’s only natural that the best-located properties tend to be more expensive, but they may also represent the most secure investment options and the highest returns.
How to buy property in Spain
It is possible to invest in Spanish real estate and to take care of everything yourself, but this can be a daunting prospect for those unfamiliar with the ins and outs of Spanish property law. Less experienced investors may enjoy the reassurance and support that comes with choosing to purchase through a managed buy-to-let programme. That way the burden of legal, tax, and even language barriers is significantly lightened. This may also suit those who’d like to invest their money but are not interested or able to invest a great deal of time. Whatever route you choose, there are plenty of properties to tempt investors in Spain.
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