Another record purchase of homes in Spain by foreigners

by Lorraine Williamson
foreigners purchase homes

MADRID – The purchase of homes by foreigners in Spain is breaking records again. Between June and September, foreigners bought 26,728 homes. This amounts to almost 16% of the total number of registered home sales. 

As has been the case for years, foreign buyers are attracted by the quality of life, the climate and the miles of coastline in Spain. Many therefore buy into real estate in the country. Not only to go on holiday there themselves, but also to rent out and thus get a nice return on their investment. In recent months, foreigners bought more homes than ever in the country. 

The association of registrars, based on these figures, points out that from 2014 to 2022, foreign demand represented a very relevant weight in the sale of homes in Spain. The levels are normally between 12 and 14%. Only the period of the corona pandemic was an exception to this, due to mobility restrictions. The 16% weight recorded during the third quarter of this year is unprecedented. 

There is, however, some shift in nationalities. Those who made the most weight have become somewhat less, while other nationalities are on the rise. The diversification of nationalities has increased. 

Most houses were bought during the third quarter by the British (9.3%), Germans (8%), French (6.2%), Romanians (4.6%), Belgians (4.27%), Dutch (4%) and Moroccans (4%). However, the share of British purchases in the total was less than ever in the third quarter. In 2015, this nationality still accounted for almost 24% of home purchases by foreigners in Spain. This is partly due to Brexit and the subsequent fall in the value of the pound against the euro. The additional administrative complications do not make it any easier for the British to buy properties in Spain these days. 

Other nationalities 

Other leading nationalities such as the French, Russians and Belgians, in turn, lose weight due to the diversification of nationalities. Nevertheless, the absolute figures show that almost all of them are at their highest purchasing level in recent years. 

Remarkable growth in Dutch purchases 

The number of home purchases by the French has grown by 36% since the third quarter of 2018. German purchases even grew by 97.8%. Also noteworthy is the 159% growth in property purchases by the Dutch in Spain. 

Poles and Ukrainians 

In the data for the months of July to September, Ukrainians and Poles also stand out. As a result of the war, they registered the largest quarterly increases. Of 0.72% and 0.26% respectively. For example, Ukrainians represent 1.81% of total purchases by foreigners, while Poles account for 3.86%. 

In absolute figures, the main nationalities were British (2,446), German (2,113), French (1,633), Romanian (1,205), Belgian (1,123), Dutch (1,077) and Moroccan (1,054). 

What are the favourite provinces for foreigners? 

Alicante, Tenerife and Malaga are the provinces in which foreigners bought the most homes in the third quarter of the year. The weight of purchases to the total of foreigners is as follows: Alicante (42.80%), Santa Cruz de Tenerife (40.46%), Malaga (33.95%), Balearic Islands (31 41%), Girona (28.10%) and Las Palmas (21.29%). 

Related: Property prices in the Balearics are the highest in Spain 

Compared to 2021, there will be a clear recovery in foreign investment in housing in 2022. In the third quarter of this year, approximately 74% more homes were sold to non-national clients in Alicante than in the same period in 2021. Valencia also stands out, with a year-on-year growth of 60%, and Malaga, with 51% more sales to foreigners. 

By autonomous community 

14 of the 17 Autonomous Communities have recorded quarterly percentage increases. Those with the greatest amount of foreign purchases are the Canary Islands (33.69%), Balearic Islands (31.46%), the Valencian Community (28.34%), Region of Murcia (23.38%), Andalucia (17, 76%) and Catalonia (15.29%). 

Related: Madness in the housing market in the province of Malaga and Costa del Sol 

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