What’s going on in overseas property…
Our data shows that far from dampening ambitions to buy property in Europe, the challenges of recent years have prompted even more people to take action. Additionally, the lifting of remaining travel restrictions means more people are now able to plan viewing trips to buy in Europe.
A major trend emerging from the pandemic is the growth of remote working (from anywhere, including overseas), which has allowed many more people to move overseas and keep their existing jobs. . This is impacting the types of overseas buyers we see, with a definite shift towards younger people moving overseas and embracing the “digital nomad” lifestyle. Because they stay longer, it opens up more remote and often cheaper places farther from the airports.
European countries are reacting to these market trends. Although Brexit will make longer trips slightly more difficult, to Spain for example (where it is now only possible to stay 90 days out of a 180-day visa-free period), the Spanish government is planning to launch a new nomadic visa digital, which allow non-EU citizens to work for non-Spanish companies without the need to apply for a full work visa.
In Spain, we are seeing a growing popularity of ‘digital nomad hotspots’ – areas that offer good broadband coverage, a lower average cost of living and great facilities, services and attractions. Some of the best places in Spain to be a digital nomad include Cullera, a bustling resort town on the Costa Blanca just 30 minutes from Valencia, Tarifa, a laid-back surfing haven in Andalucia’s Cadiz region, and the university town of Valladolid. . in Castile Leon, which is one of the cheapest regions in Spain to buy property. With cheaper prices and growing demographics, it’s worth considering upcoming areas as well as well-known spots in Spain and across Europe.
When interest in the European market is highest
Property prices tend to be slightly cheaper in Europe than in the UK, and the market is less competitive, which can be an attractive option for UK buyers and investors. The average (median) price of Spanish properties for sale on Kyero.com in the last three months of 2021 was €292,200, Portugal €245,000, France €241,000 and Italy €198,000 – all below the UK average of £270,708 (according to the UK house price index for November 2021).
Inquiries increased in the four main European markets (Spain, Portugal, France and Italy) during the fourth quarter of last year compared to the same period in 2020. In Spain, Kyero’s largest market, real estate inquiries increased by 28% per year. over one year, whereas in Portugal, they were up 48%. Buying in Europe remains a good investment if you choose a sought-after property and region.
There are key times of the year when interest in European real estate increases. Based on an analysis of over 91 million visits to Kyero.com over the past five years, the search for a home abroad in Europe peaks in late February and late August.
February is often a time of post-winter optimism and planning, with many people fed up with short days and bad weather, while August’s interest heightens after many people have returned summer holidays and wish to still be abroad. Throughout the year, Sunday is the most popular day for house hunting in Europe, with people using their weekends to dream and plan for a life in the sun.
How is buying in Europe different?
If you are considering investing in Europe, be aware that the buying process varies slightly from country to country. Wherever you are looking, finding a local real estate agent can be invaluable when it comes to viewing properties. We have relationships with around 8,000 agents in Europe, and Kyero can help connect buyers and estate agents overseas
A reputable and professional lawyer is priceless, and generally we recommend working with a lawyer in the country you are buying from, or you can find lawyers with offices in multiple countries. Finding legal advice from a lawyer trained in the legal system of the country you are buying from will help you navigate the system.
When planning your purchase, do not underestimate the costs of agent fees, legal fees, land registration fees, notary fees and taxes associated with international property purchases. These can differ significantly from the UK market and make sure your budget includes exchange rates and other international fees.
*Martin Dell is the co-founder of Kyero, a real estate portal for sales and long-term rentals in Spain and Portugal.