MADRID – At the European level, almost one in five citizens thinks that moving home would be a way to save costs. In Spain, 43% of citizens think this way.
The increased costs for groceries or energy make many citizens think about how they can best organise their lives and where there is still room for savings. Those cost increases are also affecting decisions about buying houses across Europe. This is evident from a new international survey by real estate agency Remax.
At the European level, almost one in five now believes that moving home is a way to reduce the cost of living. People are then considering purchasing a smaller or more efficient home or moving to a cheaper area. In Spain, 43% of respondents believe that there are cost savings in moving house.
Remax Europe has mapped housing trends in Europe after the pandemic. It analyses the main habits of Europeans in 2022. The survey was conducted among 16,000 citizens from 22 different European countries. One in four respondents (25%) is considering buying a house in another country. Some consider moving, while others see it as an investment in real estate.
Spain is a popular destination
Of those planning to buy something or move abroad, 14.7% look to Spain. These are mainly older respondents. After Spain, the most important destinations are England (13.4%), Germany (13.2%), and Italy (13.1%). 12.8% of those surveyed would make the jump to North America.
Spaniards least willing to leave their country
In terms of willingness to move abroad, the following countries stand out: Turkey (43.2%), Malta (40%), Romania (35.6%), Slovenia (32.1%) and Switzerland (32%). In Spain, by contrast, almost three-quarters of national respondents said they would not leave the country, compared to 66% of the European average. According to the study, 72% of Spaniards own their own home, the highest percentage of the five largest European economies.
Looking for a better quality of life and job opportunities
The quality of life or lifestyle and the best job opportunities are the main reasons why people move to another country. Nearly half (46%) of those planning to move to believe they would have a better lifestyle in their destination country. Meanwhile, 29% of people looking to buy abroad said better job opportunities would be a factor in their decision.
The cost of living is an important factor in the European real estate market
The rising cost of living is both a disincentive and an incentive to move. This applies to all of Europe. “While a significant proportion of Europeans may previously have been put off by the cost of buying a home and moving house, almost one in five now see moving as a means of reducing household bills in the medium to long term. Maybe by buying a smaller house, moving to a cheaper area or buying a more energy-efficient house,” is one of the conclusions of the Remax Europe research. Of all Europeans, Turks, Israelis, Portuguese, Welshman and Poles are most reluctant to change housing.
Changing house as a cost-saving measure
In Spain, 43% of those surveyed see moving house as a way to cut costs. But they are also looking for more space or their choice is influenced by a change in their situation or lifestyle. Concerning the latter motive, moving from an urban area to a rural or coastal area plays a role.
Countryside more popular than the city
Two-thirds of consumers surveyed are satisfied with their current, mostly urban, location. But for those who do consider moving, the rural preference is twice as high as the urban preference.
For 36% of Europeans, reducing the cost of living by moving from rural to urban areas is a determining factor. That percentage is also higher in the Southern European countries.
“In Turkey, Greece and Portugal, more than half of those who choose to live in or move to rural areas say the lower cost of living has influenced their decision. Finns are also giving up more and more cities (46%),” is one of the results of the survey.
Almost a quarter of Spaniards left weighs moving to campo or the coast
In Spain, almost a quarter (23%) are considering moving to the countryside or the coast. That is slightly above the European average (21%). Compared to other Europeans, the Spaniards not only see an out-of-town location as a way to be closer to nature (56%) but also look for a wider range of benefits. These include more space to live (51%), a slower pace of life (47%) and a lower cost of living (43%).