Spain’s housing stock plummets after foreclosure wave of buying



MADRID, Sept.21 (Reuters) – The buying rush after coronavirus closures ended reduced the stock of homes for sale in major Spanish cities by 4% over the past year, data showed on Tuesday of the main Idealista real estate advertising portal.

Madrid and the Mediterranean seaside town of Valencia both saw their housing stock for sale drop by 11%, while in Andalusian tourist hubs Seville and Malaga, available stock fell by 6% and 5% respectively on the same. period.

Pent-up demand in the first 9 months of 2020 meant that when Europe’s toughest coronavirus restrictions were lifted in September 2020, people rushed to buy homes.

Some Spaniards have sought a change of scenery after being confined to their homes for long periods of time, while a 6.6% increase in household savings in 2020, according to a study by the Spanish bank BBVA (BBVA.MC ), meant they had more money for deposits once the restrictions were relaxed.

Among the most striking declines in the availability of homes for sale is the northern city of Pamplona, ​​famous for its bull-racing festival in San Fermin, which has seen its stock drop 28% from September 2020, according to data from Idealista.

Barcelona, ​​where the local government implemented rent controls in September last year, was the only exception, with some 7% more homes for sale than 12 months ago.

“This could be related to the cap on rental prices – landlords might prefer not to rent their properties and choose to sell them instead,” a source with knowledge of the Catalan real estate market told Reuters.

“There are 40% fewer properties to rent in Barcelona now than a year ago,” the source added.

Spanish real estate remains popular among foreign investors, with the British accounting for around 12% of buyers, Moroccans almost 9% and the French and Germans 7% -8% in the first quarter of this year, according to data from the College of registrars.

Reporting by Clara-Laeila Laudette; Editing by Alexander Smith

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