The Spanish coast, the uneven housing recovery in each area


The demand for holiday housing has been increasing over recent years. In Spain, we have about 7905 km of coastline, of which approximately 215 km belongs to the so-called Costa Brava. Before going in depth into the world of real estate, perhaps it is as well to note that the latter, the Costa Brava, is located in the northeast of Spain, to be precise, it starts in Blanes and ends at the French border, in Portbou.


In 2013, we were still in midst of the famous crisis that ended with the housing bubble, causing real estate sales to plummet, and where before annual sales of approximately 775,000 houses were made, they were down to 312,000. Today, we are experiencing some recovery, especially in the noteworthy area of the Mediterranean Sea, where a faster recovery is usually achieved than in the area of Atlantic and Cantabrian coast.


One of the main causes of this economic and real estate recovery comes from abroad and the foreign purchaser now accounts for a large percentage of the number of purchases in the homes on the coast; however, we must also stress that we are beginning to see a return to growth with domestic buyers. Amongst overseas investors, the main nationalities are British, French, Russian and German, and one of the reasons to purchase is to prepare for their new home after retirement. On the Costa Brava, this point is far from being the exception and foreign buyers are also prevalent in this area; regarding the domestic demand, this mainly corresponds to Barcelona.


A review of the coast


Every year, TINSA (Tasaciones Inmobiliarias SA) prepares a summary of its statistics regarding housing on the beach. In its latest report, for the present year of 2017, its technicians indicate that the highest levels of recovery have occurred in the Canary Islands, Mallorca and Ibiza, the Costa Dorada, south of Alicante and Cadiz coast between Tarifa and Conil. At the other extreme, the less recovered areas are the island of La Palma and the Cadiz coast of Algeciras and its surroundings, the Asturian eastern seaboard and the Coruñesa coast.


Regarding prices, the biggest gains are in the Balearic and Canary islands, Alicante, Barcelona, Malaga and Cadiz and we have Castellón, Murcia and Huelva at the other end. Finally, with regard to construction activity, it is beginning to see an improvement depending on the area, and it can be observed that some of the work that was halted earlier has been restarted. With respect to the Catalan coast, we predict that we will see the start of new homes in Platja d’Aro and one in Palamos.


Although it is difficult to generalise with 7905 km of stunning coastline around us, as we have seen, we can say that we are now well into a period of recovery.