Where in Spain do most foreigners prefer to buy a house?

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It is not surprising that foreigners seeking to buy property in Spain primarily focus on the Mediterranean coast and the Balearic and Canary Islands. According to Idealista’s latest report, more than 100 neighbourhoods and districts in these coastal areas attribute over 50% of their home sale interest to foreign buyers.

In some areas, such as Roses (Girona), Calpe (Alicante) and Andratx (Balearic Islands), the relative demand from foreign buyers is even above 65%. In these regions, the French, Dutch and Germans are the main interested parties.

Popular destinations for foreigners

In recent years, the number of housing transactions by foreigners has increased significantly. An intensive increase in the number of transactions can be seen between 2021 and 2023. This underlines the important role of foreign buyers in the national housing market. Last year, foreigners made 15% of total home purchases in Spain, up from 13.8% in 2022, with more than 87,300 transactions.

In the first months of this year, demand remained high, with 14.2% of home sales from January to March coming from foreign buyers. These figures remain well above the usual pre-2014 rates of around 12%.

Where do foreigners look for a house?

The greatest demand from foreigners is for houses in coastal areas, especially along the Spanish east coast (Levante) from the Costa Brava to Cádiz, and on the archipelagos. According to data from Idealista, there are more than 120 locations where demand from foreign buyers exceeds 50%, rising to 70% in areas such as Port Esportiu – Puig Rom – Canyelles in Roses (Girona) and Maryvilla in Calpe (Alicante). In the last district, the largest group of interested home buyers is formed by Dutch people.

Alicante and Balearic Islands at the top

The province of Alicante has the largest number of popular destinations for foreign buyers. There are no fewer than 30 zones here where more than 50% of the demand comes from foreigners. Well-known places include Torrevieja, Moraira, and Orihuela. Three neighbourhoods in Moraira are especially popular among Dutch home buyers, namely Moravit-Cap Blanc, Paichi and Pinar de Advocat-Cometa. The Balearic Islands (Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera) follow with 28 popular locations, such as Cala Ratjada and Canyamel in Mallorca, and areas in Andratx such as Port d’Andratx and Es Camp de Mar.

Other popular regions

In Santa Cruz de Tenerife in the Canary Islands there are 23 locations where demand from foreign buyers is above 60%. These are Playa de Fañabé and La Caleta in Adeje, and Vallehermoso on La Gomera.

Girona, Málaga and Las Palmas each have 12 favourite destinations for foreign buyers. In Girona, Roses and Empuriabrava are particularly popular, while in Málaga places such as Nerja and Estepona score highly. Mogán and Playa del Inglés are popular destinations in Las Palmas (Gran Canaria).

Notable trends

For the first time in a long time, the British are not at the top of the list of foreign buyers in Spain, despite still being the main buyers. Instead, the Germans are the leaders in 55 of the 120 areas analysed, mainly in the Balearic and Canary Islands.

Swedes, with 21 prominent locations, show a lot of interest in Alicante and Málaga, while the Dutch focus on Alicante, Málaga and Granada. French dominate in Girona, Italians in the Canary Islands, and British in Manilva, Estepona and Gualchos (Granada).

Poles and Lithuanians are also showing their interest in specific areas such as La Mata (Alicante) and Los Gigantes (Tenerife), while Norwegians are concentrated in Patalavaca, Mogán (Gran Canaria). Click here to see Idealista’s full list.

Also read: Foreigners take over the province of Málaga

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