The Times (Bricks & Mortar)
(Images courtesy of timesonline.co.uk
Mark Stucklin from Spanish Property Insight paints a grim picture: “The latest figures are a disaster” he says and then goes on to state: “Even those who bought desirable properties in Spain as early as 2000 could see the values of their assets shrink. Those who can afford to ride out the downturn should not consider selling at the moment if they can help it.”
During the past decade vast tracts of the Spanish coastline have been remorselessly developed in a construction boom that has made the nation one of the fastest growing economies in Europe. One such example of this is Marina d’Or (pictured below), a resort on the Costa Azahar, 60 miles north of Valencia. A maze of densely built blocks of flats, it has been relentlessly marketed to British buyers as the biggest holiday resort in Europe. It has plans for three golf courses 40,000 more properties and a theme park. None of which seem destined to become a reality as the resort’s plans are now bogged down in planning problems and the market has turned against it. In addition to the owner being under investigation for corruption, sales have fallen by 60% and the developer has laid off 1,000 staff.
So what does this mean for people still desiring to buy a property in Spain? After all it is still one of the most attractive countries and climates in the world and there are lots of Britons who would be interested in owning a property there, given the right set of circumstances. The best advice seems to be to stick to quality developments and avoid densely built blocks of apartments in mediocre locations. Attractive developments in good locations should still be a good medium to long term investment, emerging strongly when the market picks up again in a few years time.