Spain saw property sales fall by 8% in April
The topsy-turvey nature of the recovery seen by the Spanish property market has been revealed by new statistics.
Sales recorded by the Land Registry slipped by 8% in April, in comparison to the same period one year ago.
Figures released from the National Institute of Statistics suggest that the housing market has seen its largest fall since February 2014. However, the figures should be assessed in the knowledge that March saw a surge of nearly 30%.
Mark Stucklin, of Spanish Property Insight, believes that while the fall comes as a surprise, it should be noted that sales have, with the odd exception, risen in most months of the last four years. What’s more, sales are up by 10% year-on-year.
Stucklin observed: ‘As always, it’s important to bear mind that the INE’s figures are based on sales inscribed in the Land Register, not actual sales that took place in the period. As such they lag the market by about two or three months. So this decline reflects a decline in sales closed around January and February.’
‘Perhaps sales were brought forward into the March recording period. Some experts quoted in the Spanish press are attributing the decline to Easter falling in April this year, but that doesn’t make sense for the time lag reason,’ he added.
In addition, there was a fall of 5% in resales and a more profound fall of 22% in new home sales.
There was however rises in region popular with overseas buyers. Tenerife saw rises of nearly 50% in the regions of Asturias and Cantabria. The Costa Brava also saw a rise of 6%.
On the other hand, the Castellon province saw a fall of 36%, while Valencia City saw falls of 29%. Even the Balearics, one of the hottest markets for some years, saw sales fall by 15%.
Concluding, Stucklin said: ‘Brexit is undoubtedly having an impact on sales in Malaga, Alicante, Murcia, and the Balearics, where the British are an important component of demand, but that doesn’t explain the slump in buyer activity in regions like Barcelona and Madrid.’