54,512 Homes Sold in Spain in Q1

The latest statistical results of residential property transactions made before a notary, published on Wednesday on the Government website, La Moncloa, show that 54,512 homes were sold in Spain in the first quarter of 2013, representing a drop of 21.5% compared to the first quarter of 2012.

According to these results, which are prepared by the Ministry of Development using data provided by the College of Notaries, in the last twelve month period – from April 2012 to March 2013 – residential real estate transactions made before a notary totalled 348,715, which represents an increase of 1.3% compared with the previous 12 months.

With regard to the territorial distribution of these transactions, all regions registered decreases, year-on-year, except for Murcia, which registered an increase in sales of 10.3%. Among the regions with the largest declines stood Navarra (-49.5%), Castilla y Leon (-40.9%), the Basque Country (-40.4%) and Asturias (-38.3%).

By province, four recorded year-on-year increases: Alicante (10.5%), Murcia (10.3%), Almeria (7.9%) and Tarragona (6.6%). Among those registering significant decreases were Ávila (-51.2%), Navarra (-49.5%), Soria (-48.5%), Salamanca (-45.6%) and Álava (-45.3%).

With respect to the last 12 months, ten regions recorded growth, especially La Rioja, 12.7%; Aragon, 11.7%; and Murcia and Valencia, both with 10.8%. Eight regions registered declines, in particular Navarra and Cantabria, with -21.5% and -14.5%, respectively.

The cities which registered the highest number of transactions were Madrid (3,350), Barcelona (1,635), Seville (1,219), Valencia (827) and Zaragoza (819).

Among the provincial capitals and municipalities with more than 100,000 inhabitants which registered most growth were: Torrevieja (14.6%), Alicante (14.1%), Alcobendas (13.8%), Marbella (11.8%), Seville (10.9%) and Cuenca (9.7%). Among those registering the biggest declines were: Getafe (-72.8%), Jaén (-71.9%), Huesca (-63.3%), Pamplona (-63.1%), Zamora (-57.4%) and Badajoz (-56.1%).

During the first quarter of 2013, a total of 51,538 of the transactions corresponded to private housing, representing 94.5% of the total, while transactions for protected housing in that period amounted to 2,974, or 5.5% of the total.

17.3% of the total transactions (9,414) were for new housing, while transactions for second-hand housing accounted for 82.7% (45,098).

Foreign Residents Still Buying

The volume of transactions made by foreign residents in Spain experienced growth for the seventh consecutive quarter, rising by 5.0% compared to the first quarter of 2012, with 8,457 purchases, and brought the percentage of all purchases made by foreign residents to 15.5%, the highest in the historical series.

The provinces which registered the highest number of purchases by foreign residents were: Alicante (2,485), Malaga (992), Tenerife (771), Barcelona (652) and Almeria (471).Meanwhile, transactions by non-resident foreigners amounted to 792, representing an increase of 40% compared to the same period last year.