Spanish Real Estate Market: August-2020 News

The summer of 2020 is coming to an end, but some news from the warm coast is still there for you! In the latest issue of our report, we have collected the most exciting updates on the Spanish real estate market. In August, the struggle against okupas is intensifying, Murcia, despite the pandemic, is increasing the number of sales, and Spanish property owners from foreign countries finally get the opportunity to sell their real estate in Spain remotely. How can it be done? Read to find out!

1. From city to village

Аccоrding to Idеalista, in 2020, demand for least populated towns and villages (less than 5000 people!) has increased. This is truе for all regions of Spain, except the Balearic Islands.
Village in Andalusia
Among the main reasons are the COVID-19 pandemic, which has prompted people to look for housing in remote areas with fewer neighbours around. Also, in municipalities with less than 5000 citizens, property prices are half as low as in larger cities (€830 per sq.m. versus €1730).

2. It's all about the pool

Spanish apartments with access to the pool on average are 46% more expensive than the same apartments without it. Around 20% of apartments in Spain offer this advantage. Most often these are apartments in gated communities with a common area.
Urbanization with common pool
Urbanization Hacienda del Sol in Estepona
Pools are in demand in Andalusia (+83.9% on average to apartments without a pool). The lowest value is in the Cantabria region (+6.2%).

3. Drones vs okupas

As we noted in the previous news digest, with the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in Spain, okupas have become more active – invaders of other people's homes who take advantage of the absence of their owners. Among the main reasons are the closed borders (foreign homeowners cannot come to Spain, their property is empty) and the paralysed work of Spanish courts for several months, which are empowered to order evictions.
Police and drone
According to the Spanish online newspaper El Economista, by the end of the summer, the active struggle against the "okupas" resumed. Law enforcement agencies in some regions are using new creative methods for this purpose. For example, police officers from the city of Badalona have purchased several drones to patrol the city's districts from the air for illegal home invasions. According to Spanish journalists, the drones are also equipped with loudspeakers, in addition to cameras, with the help of which law enforcement officers warn of the consequences for illegal invaders.

4. Okupas vs Valencian authorities

Also, on 20 August The Valencia Provincial Public Prosecutor's Office has issued a decree for immediate eviction of okupas if the property they occupy is the owner's place of residence. It does not matter whether it is a primary residence or a vacation home: it is considered inhabited if it is used by the owner for at least a few days a year. According to an instruction from the Attorney General of the Province of Valencia, Jose Francisco Ortiz Navarro, eviction, in this case, must take place immediately, without any legal proceedings.
To do so, the owner of an illegally occupied property must present proof of ownership and evidence that his or her property is occupied without permission. "If the owner uses the housing as a residence, the illegal occupation is considered as breaking in and is viewed as a medium-gravity crime. In this case, the illegal occupants must be evicted immediately by state law enforcement officials," Ortiz Navarro says.

In case okupas are people in a vulnerable situation, such as families with children, police must report the fact of eviction to the social services, which are obliged to take appropriate actions. The statement emphasises that this decision is intended to protect the rights of the owners because if eviction is carried out lawfully, it can take several months.

5. Murcia did not notice any pandemic

According to the National Institute of Statistics of Spain, during the Coronavirus epidemic, sales of Spanish housing fell by an average of 22% (-43% from April to July). The pandemic has significantly reduced the number of transactions in all regions except Murcia. There, during the Coronavirus, the number of sales increased by 12% compared to 2019. For example, 1200 villas and apartments were sold in Murcia in June (1059 in June 2019).
Panoramic shot of Murcia
Panoramic shot of Murcia
Among the regions that have suffered the most during the pandemic are Aragon (-41% of the number of transactions), Valencia and the Balearic Islands (-35% in both cases).

6. When will the market recover? CaixaBank forecast

Residents of Spanish islands and coasts are less likely to suffer from Coronavirus than those living in central regions. This information was reported by Idealista, citing Sonneil, WHO and the Spanish Ministry of Health. Besides, residents of the coastal areas of Spain suffer from Covid-19 less frequently than in most EU countries.
Coasal view on Tenerife
The lowest incidence of coronavirus in Spain is in the Canary Islands. The picture shows Los Gigantes (Tenerife island)
The study analysed morbidity statistics of most Central and Western European countries. The average sickness rate to date is 371 cases per 100,000 people. The figures of Spain's coastal regions are noticeably lower: 296 cases in Alicante, 257 in Malaga, 213 in the Balearic Islands, 164 and 80 in Tenerife and Las Palmas (Canary Islands) respectively. This may be due to the beneficial effects of sea air, as it is known that the COVID-19 risk group includes people with respiratory diseases.

7. Sell Spanish homes without leaving your home

In August, some European citizens had the opportunity to sell property in Spain remotely with the help of VirtoProperty. Unfortunately, the Spanish borders are still closed to some countries, or you have to sit the quarantine upon arrival. However, thanks to IT solutions, it is now possible to sell property remotely. Our specialists are experienced in remote sales and are ready to accept your requests.
To leave an application, you need to fill out a form on our website, collect the necessary documents and issue a power of attorney. You can find the steps of remote sale via the link. VirtoProperty agents will help you evaluate your real estate and set the best price based on your strategy (quick sale, the most profitable deal, etc.). The cost of the service is €490, excluding commission charges.
Thanks for reading! If you are interested in Spanish real estate, please, open our catalogue and choose an appropriate property. Take care of yourself and subscribe to the Virtoproprety social media to see future articles!