MADRID – After a year of corona, more and more Spaniards are looking for a larger home with outdoor space rather than small pisos (flats).
Newspaper La Vanguardia asked a few real estate and mortgage companies about the developments in the Spanish housing market and listed the latest trends.
In Spain, many homes are relatively small and dark and do not have a balcony or terrace. According to data from the Spanish statistical office INE, almost half of the homes in the country measure between 60 and 90 square meters. In Madrid and Barcelona apartments are even smaller.
“More space has been the most important demand for a home since Covid,” says Juan Carlos Álvarez of Servihabitat. While sales of the smallest homes fell by two percent in the past year, sales of more spacious homes increased by two percent. It’s a small difference, but it gives a good idea of the current trend. According to Comprarcasa, the demand for more spacious homes has increased by almost 20%. “But not everyone can afford a house with more space both in and outside, because prices have not dropped.”
A balcony or terrace
Families in particular are looking for a larger home with a balcony or garden. Since the outbreak of corona, people in their search for a home more often filter for the presence of a garden, terrace or balcony. A survey among website visitors of Estudios de Pisos shows that more than 70% of the respondents lack space or comfort in their home. More than 30% indicate the desire for a more spacious home has grown since the lockdown. They are looking for a home where they can better combine work and family.
People also appear to be willing to live at a greater distance from their work. Before the corona crisis, people chose a home based on price, location and characteristics, such as size, layout, light and outdoor space. Price still remains the most important requirement, but the characteristics of the home are now more important than its location. There is an increased interest in housing in towns and villages outside the major cities.
The supply of small houses is growing
On the housing market, however, the supply of small homes without outdoor space is increasing. People who want a bigger house put their old house up for sale. “There are many ‘pipe drawer’ apartments, narrow, low and deep. They are difficult to sell and the owners have to lower the price a lot, “says Toni Expósito of Comprarcasa. At the moment, there are also many homes of people who died as a result of corona. Comprarcasa now handles 21% more sales of inherited homes.
Add to that the fact that the banks are not eager to provide a mortgage for the purchase of small and dark homes. When someone can no longer pay their mortgage, the lender does not want to be left with a badly marketable product. It is not yet clear whether the preference for more spacious homes is a temporary trend. If not, it will have a major influence on the spatial development of municipalities.