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Who are the foreigners buying properties in Spain in 2017?

07 Dec
Who are the foreigners buying real estate in spain? Infographic

Automatic translation from Google translate:

Who are the foreigners buying properties in Spain in 2017?

Which nationalities are active? Are they resident or not? Where do they buy? What price do they pay?


1. Which nationalities are buying properties in Spain?

We had 50.087 Spanish properties purchased by foreigners in the first six months of 2017!

The Statistical Information Center of Notaries in Spain has just released its last report of Foreigners activity on the property market. During the first semester of 2017, the sale of free housing by foreign buyers accelerated by 13.4% year-on-year to 50,087 purchased property.
This equals to 19.4% of all the transactions during the first six months of the year.
Another important statistics: 53.4% of the transactions were carried out by foreign resident citizens!

As reported last week, Spaniards and Foreigners are very active: both are buying the most since 2008:


Most active nationalities within EU

In the first half of 2017 the most active nationalities were :

  • the British (13.9%),
  • the French (8.8%),
  • the Germans (8.2%),
  • the Italians (7.7%),
  • the Romanians (6.9%)
  • and the Belgians (6.2%).

Representing 50% of the transactions.

Most active nationalities outside EU

The proportion of purchases was also high by foreigners outside the EU:

such as Morocco (5.7%), China (4.7%) or Russia (3.0%).

Here you go, a quick check on all the nationalities:


Decreasing activity

Decreasing activity was the biggest for:

  • Danes (-1.7%),
  • Swedes (-3.2%)
  • and especially British (-16.4%).


Evolution of the purchases by each nationality since 2008



This was the situation 9 months ago: we keep the same top 3 nations.

Who are the foreigners buying real estate in spain? Infographic

Foreigners resident in Spain are more active

They recorded 26,750 operations, 21.8% more than in the same period of the previous year.

Non-resident foreigners bought 23,337 properties, an increase of 5.1% year-on-year.

This is quite a strong vote of confidence by foreigners living in Spain!

Check our chart analysing who is more active on the Spanish property market: Foreigners or Spaniards with the evolution since 2007 (year before the crisis):



2. Where are foreigners buying properties in Spain?


Most active regions – Biggest increase in demand?

As we reported last week (analysis on the last year up to end June 2017, data from the Ministerio de Fomento)
The sale of free housing by foreign buyers increased in all the Spanish Regions. The most significant increases occurred in:

  • Castilla y León (39.0%),
  • Navarra (43.8%)
  • and La Rioja (74.8%).


Most active regions – Biggest activity of foreigners vs Spaniards?

The Autonomous Communities with a greater weight of transactions of free housing made by foreigners were:

  • Andalusia with 19.4% of all transactions,
  • Murcia with 26.9% of all transactions,
  • Valencian Community with 35.5% of all transactions,
  • The Balearic Islands with 37.7% of all transactions,
  • and the Canary Islands with 42.3% of all transactions,


Least active regions?

Five autonomies registered increases below the Spanish average of 13.4%:

  • the Balearic Islands (5.3%),
  • Andalusia (5.4%)
  • and Murcia (5.7%).
  • Canary Islands (10.1%)
  • Valencian Community (12.0%).

Check the evolution of activity per region since 2007 (year before the crisis):

Remember the infographic we did on the subject last year, it remains nearly the same in 2017!

Where are foreigners buying in spain? Infograhic


3. What price do foreigners pay to buy a property in Spain?


Check the evolution of the price paid per region since 2007 by foreigners (year before the crisis):

The average price per square meter of operations carried out by foreigners accelerated to 2.9% year-on-year. The acceleration of prices was recorded both among non-residents (4.5%) and residents (2.9%), although the former returned to pay higher prices than the second ones, € 1,941 / m² against € 1,405 / m², respectively).

You can check the evolution of the price per square m paid by foreigners (resident or not in Spain) and Spaniards (resident or not in Spain) since December 2007 (year before the crisis) on this chart:

However, prices fell in seven Autonomous Communities, highlighting Murcia (-7.2%), Castilla-La Mancha (-7.3%) and Extremadura (-25.4%).

This price discrepancy between foreigners living in Spain and not living in Spain could come from many factors:

  • Non-resident are buying a second home at more expensive locations
  • Non-resident who are buying have a higher purchasing power
  • Resident foreigners could decide to reside due to the low cost of real estate in Spain


In terms of levels, the average price per square meter for foreigners continued to register strong differences for autonomy. During the first half of the year, it was below the average
(€ 1,668) in 12 of the 17 Regions.:

Regions under € 800:

Extremadura, Castilla-La Mancha, La Rioja, Castilla y León or Aragón.

Regions between € 1,000 and the national average € 1,668

Murcia, Asturias, Navarra, Valencian Community and Andalusia were located.

Regions above the national average € 1,668

  • Canary Islands (€ 1,723),
  • Basque Country (€ 1,888),
  • Madrid (€ 1,928),
  • Catalonia (€ 1,974)
  • and Baleares (€ 2,735).


Finally, the evolution of prices has increased by 5.1% for the operations by nationals in the first
semester, by 2.8% for the operations of resident foreigners and by 4.5% for the operations by non-resident foreigners.

Let’s have a closer look at current property prices and at the price evolution for each spanish region since one year

If you want to read more on the subject and you missed our paper of last week: Which are the top 10 Spanish cities where foreigners are buying properties NOW?

Read the full paper in Spanish here.



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Senior analyst and strategist at HTBIS

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