What are the most popular provinces in Spain for foreign home buyers?

by Lorraine Williamson
foreign buyers of property

According to data from the Register of Real Estate Owners, the percentage of homes purchased by foreigner buyers has increased. In the second quarter, foreigners even concluded almost 15% of the total number of transactions, according to real estate platform Idealista. 

This is a remarkable growth, because the number of real estate transactions had fallen in the two previous quarters. However, not all parts of Spain are equally popular; a number of Spanish provinces, where more than 30% of all homes have a foreign owner, stand head and shoulders above the rest. 

With a percentage ranging from 15.8% to 29.2%, an above-average number of homes were sold in the provinces of Gerona, Murcia, Las Palmas, Almería and Tarragona in the months of April, May and June. 

Costa Blanca, Málaga and Island Groups remain the most popular 

However, the Costa Blanca remains as popular as ever, leading the list with almost 45% of real estate transactions concluded by foreigners. Only in Alicante was this percentage slightly lower at 40%. Santa Cruz follows Tenerife at number two with more than 38%, Málaga with more than 32% and the Balearic Islands with more than 30%. 

In general, the number of homes acquired by a foreign owner increased by 0.42% in the second quarter compared to the beginning of 2023. One percentage point more broke the record recorded in the third quarter of 2022, which was an average of 15. 92%. 

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Biggest increase 

The number of foreign property buyers increased in 31 Spanish provinces, while in 19 the number remained the same. The largest increase in the second quarter compared to the previous quarter was recorded in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, with an increase of 3.6%. After that, the percentage increased most in Murcia and in Teruel, Valencia, La Rioja and Soria, among others. In León and Ourense the percentage increased between 1% and 2%. With slightly less growth, but still above the Spanish average, are registered the provinces of Almería, Badajoz, Toledo, Cádiz, Barcelona, Las Palmas, Madrid, A Coruña and Segovia. The percentage grew slightly less rapidly in Huelva, Salamanca, Zaragoza, Alava and Córdoba. 

Least popular for foreign buyers

With a share of less than 5% of the total number of real estate transactions, the least popular provinces for foreigners are: (despite the growth) A Coruña, Albacete, Pontevedra, Palencia, Cáceres, Córdoba and Zamora. 

British hold the lead 

Looking at the nationalities of foreign home buyers, the British are in the lead with almost 2,000 transactions between April 1 and June 30, despite the fact that their share fell from 9% to 8.8% during this period. In 2015, this figure was still 25%. After the British, the Germans (7.25%), French (6.56%), Moroccan (5.37%), Italian (5.22%), Romanian (5.15%), Belgian (5.09%) and Dutch (4%) follow.

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