Lucas Fox analysis for Q1 and Q2 2019 shows record sales for Lucas Fox’s Catalonia offices in the first half of 2019.
The political situation in Catalonia had a noticeable effect on Lucas Fox sales in Barcelona in the first six months of 2018 but since then there has been a significant recovery. The number of sales transactions by Lucas Fox Barcelona in the first six months of 2019 more than tripled compared to the same period in 2018 and the total value of sales transactions almost quadrupled. The average price of a property sold by Lucas Fox Barcelona in the first six months of 2019 also increased, by 19%, averaging at almost €1 million.
Lucas Fox’s Catalonia offices saw transactions in the first half of the year rise by 150% when compared to the same period in 2018 and the value by 132%. The average price of a sold property across the seven offices located in the Catalan region was €868,087.
National buyers accounted for 31% of all Lucas Fox Barcelona sales in the first six months of 2019. Middle Eastern buyers accounted for 23%, US buyers accounted for 11% and UK buyers 7%. Middle Eastern buyers have been key investors in New Development homes in Barcelona. The remaining buyers mainly came from Asia, Latin America and other European countries. The majority of all Lucas Fox Barcelona buyers in the first six months of 2019 purchased property for investment purposes (47%, up from 41% in the same period in 2018). 20% bought as a primary residence and 21% as a secondary residence.
Lucas Fox Barcelona Prime Market
Based on sales of €900,000 or more, Lucas Fox Barcelona saw its sales triple in the first half of 2019 compared to the same period in 2018. The value of sales increased fourfold with an average sold price of €2,252,576 compared to €1,654,553 in the first half of 2018, an increase of 36% year-on-year.
National buyers accounted for 33% of all Barcelona prime buyers, with 15% of all Barcelona prime buyers coming from the Middle East, 6% from the United States and 6% from the United Kingdom. The remaining buyers mainly came from other European countries. With regards to the motivation for buying, 37% purchased property as a primary residence, 33% as a secondary residence and 31% for investment purposes.
The vast majority of prime buyers chose to purchase in the sought-after district of Eixample Right, followed by the Zona Alta, which includes the areas of Turó Park, Sarrià and Sant Gervasi-La Bonanova.
According to government figures the number of sales transactions in Barcelona in the first five months of 2019 increased by 3% over the same period in 2018, averaging 4,884 sales per month. The number of sales transactions of new homes showed a more significant increase (15%) when comparing sales in the first five months of 2019 to those in the same period in 2018. Sales of new homes represented 17% of the total number of sales in the first five months of 2019, compared to 15% in the first five months of 2018. (INE)
The total value of sales transactions in Barcelona Province in the first quarter of 2019 grew by 16% over the amount of trading for the same period in 2018, with the total value of sales transactions of resale properties showing an increase of 14%. The total value of sales transactions of new homes showed an even more significant increase, of 38%, when compared to the total value in the same period in 2018. (Spanish Department of Development)
The number of prime market sales transactions (over €900,000) in Barcelona in the whole of 2018 (latest data available) showed a slight decrease, of 2%, when compared to the number of prime sales in the whole of 2017. (Spanish Department of Development)
The number of foreign buyers in Barcelona Province accounted for 9% of the total sales in the first quarter of 2019 compared to 8% in the first quarter of 2018. (Spanish Land Registry)
For the first time in five years, average property prices in Barcelona city showed a slight annual decrease, of just under 1%, ending the second quarter of 2019 on €4,206 per square metre. Average prices were down in the key districts of Barcelona Old Town, Eixample, Gràcia and Sant Martí, ending the second quarter of 2019 on €4,393 per square metre (1% decrease), €4,792 per square metre (1% decrease), €4,229 per square metre (6% decrease) and €3,794 per square metre (3% decrease) respectively. However, average prices in the prime district of Sarrià-Sant Gervasi registered an increase, of 3%, ending the second quarter on €5,416 per square metre. (Idealista)
Average rental prices in Barcelona city showed an annual increase of 1.4% in June 2019, ending the second quarter of 2019 on €16.5 per square metre. Average rental prices increased in all but two of Barcelona’s ten districts, with prices in the desirable districts of Gràcia and Sarrià-Sant Gervasi ending the second quarter of 2019 on €16.3 per square metre (5% increase) and €17 per square metre (0.6% increase) respectively. Average prices showed small decreases in Barcelona Old Town and Eixample, where they ended the second quarter on €18.3 per square metre (3% decrease) and €16.7 per square metre (0.2% decrease). Barcelona continues to be one of the best places for high rental yields – around 5% in prime central districts. (Idealista)
The number of passengers arriving at Barcelona-El Prat in the first six months of 2019 showed an annual increase of 5% over passenger arrivals in the same period in 2018. Just over 24.8 million passengers arrived at Barcelona-El Prat airport in the first six months of 2019. (Aena)
International tourism in Catalonia in the first five months of 2019 increased by 5% over the same period in 2018. Catalonia hosted almost 4.9 million international tourists in the first five months of 2019. (INE)
The Insider’s View
“In recent months we have seen a shift towards buyers looking for investment properties, especially for the Golden Visa and rentals. Age-wise they tend to be in their mid 40s upwards and work in senior management, finance or have their own businesses. This is particularly the case with Middle Eastern buyers, a demographic that has grown significantly in the last year. Products most in demand tend to be newly renovated with classic taste apartments in central locations such as Eixample and the Zona Alta, particularly Turó Park.”
International Sales & Investments Manager Lucas Fox
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