French Buyers Swamp Spain in Property Bargain Hunt
French investors are flocking to Spain in search of a bargain holiday home in light of the weakened state of France’s property market, and the severe impact of President Hollande's austerity measures.
According to data from property website Kyero, French buyers accounted for 18.2% of overseas enquiries for Spanish properties from January-June 2014.
Britons still lead the charge taking a 54.4% slice of the foreign investment market in Spain with Germany trailing someway behind France with around 7.5% of enquiries recorded by the property portal.
Martin Dell, director of Kyero said: “The French economy is one of the strongest in Europe at the moment, providing French citizens with great buying power. With the French property market looking pretty flat, many are casting their eyes further south in search of holiday home bargains that can satisfy both investment and lifestyle requirements.”
“Property in Spain is incredibly cheap right now and for French buyers, being part of the Euro means that the headache of currency exchange is removed from the purchase process,” he added.
Other overseas enquiries were received from the Dutch at 5%, Swedish (2%) and Norwegian (1%).
Around 30% of enquiries were for homes priced between ?50,000 and ?100,000 with 21% looking for homes under ?50,000 and18% from ?100,000-?150,000. Prime property attracted the fewest investors with just 3% targeting property worth ?500,000 to ?1m and 1% properties in excess of ?1m.
French buyers are particularly attracted to the northern provinces of Spain with 51% of enquiries relating to Girona, just 15 minutes’ drive from France, followed by Castellon (46%), Tarragona (28%) and Cantabria (25%).
More than 800,000 French nationals can speak Spanish and it is the second most-widely taught language in France.
Average prices for resale property in Spain for the month of August saw an increase of just under 1% over July this year,at ?1,656 per square metre.
A weakened property market in France has seen property prices declining by 2% in Paris since the start of the year and fell further by 1.5% between early July and late August according to data from MeilleursAgents.com.
In the French capital, the average price per square metre has dropped to ?7,930, representing a decrease of 7.7% from the peak of June 2011, a level not seen since October 2010.