Spanish Home Sales Soared by 20.7% in September

In the third quarter of the year, home sales in Spain increased by 8.6% over the same period last year, while prices fell by an average of 4% in the same period, according to the latest data from the
General Council of Notaries. In September alone, the volume of homes sold shot up by 20.7%, year-on-year, to a total of 26,778 transactions, while the decline in prices stood at 2.9%.

According to the Notaries, the increase in home sales so far this year is partly due to the number of transactions returning to normal levels following the abolishment of the income tax reductions for the purchase of a residence (implemented at the end of 2012), but also reflects a stabilisation in the monthly sales.

The quarterly average for transactions carried out between January and September, of 84,166, is higher than the quarterly average registered for the same period of 2013, when it reached 70,298 transactions.

The number of transactions for the sale of apartments in the month of September increased by 19.5%, a similar rate to the increase for the total home sales in the month. Among them, sales of private apartments showed growth of 17.8%, due to the strong 31.8% increase in the sale of second-hand apartments.

In contrast, the sale of new apartments fell by 32.8% in the month of September, compared with the same month of the previous year, while sales of individual family homes grew by 25.4%, year-on-year.

With regard to prices, the average price per square metre of the homes purchased in September was 1,187 euros, which represented a year-on-year decline of 2.9%. For apartments, this decline stood at 1.1%, and within this housing segment, private apartments registered the same rate of decline, to 1,319 euros per square metre. The price of second-hand apartments stood at 1,294 euros per square metre, recording a fall of -1.2% year-on-year, and the price per square metre of the new apartments stood at 1,510 euros, representing an increase of 3.7% over the same month of the previous year. The average price for an individual family home was 969 euros per square metre, marking a decline of 6.8% year-on-year.

The Notaries reported that their data shows a recovery in the third quarter of the year in terms of year-on-year rates for home sales, although this does not include the prices, which have for the most part continued falling.

Overall, the number of mortgage loans grew by 16.2% year-on-year in the third quarter of 2014, while loans for home purchases registered strong growth of 49.7%.

In the monthly data, the number of new loans granted in September reached a total of 18,715, representing an increase of 16.2%. The average value of these loans was 130,633 euros, reflecting an increase of 8.3% year-on-year.

El Economista reported that, in September, the number of loans destined for the purchase of a property increased by 46.7% year-on-year, mainly due to the increase in the granting of loans for the acquisition of housing (+49.7% year-on-year), while for the other types of property the increase was 17.8%. The average loan amount for a property purchase reached 116,618 euros (+4.6% year-on-year), while for housing, the average capital loaned was 111,004 euros (+4.5% year-on-year) and for the other property types, the average loan amount stood at 183,812 euros (+12.3%).

Mortgage loans for construction showed a 26.4% increase in September, with 315 new loans granted, and an average loan value of 348,198 euros, representing a year-on-year rise of 70%.

The Notaries’ data indicated that the percentage of home purchases financed with a mortgage fell in September to 37.1%, and that for this type of transaction, the amount of the loan represented, on average, 75.5% of the value of the housing, which is slightly more than in recent months.