Banco Halifax Hispania claims that Spain’s continued popularity has been fuelled by the demand for low rate Euro mortgages and the boom in low-cost flights.
The Spanish arm of Halifax (the UK’s largest lender) quotes figures from the recent Official Social Trends Report that Spain accounts for 27% of all second homes overseas owned by Brits and also highlights recent research from YouGov which found that 50% of 18 to 29 year olds plan to buy property aboard.
“With the low cost of mortgages, many people have now realised that owning property in Spain is a real possibility and Banco Halifax Hispania has continued to see an increase in the number of UK residents wanting to buy property abroad,” said Ian Smith, head of European operations at Halifax. Apart from being able to provide mortgage products specifically designed for UK buyers, the bank is able to call upon an approved panel of qualified solicitors and surveyors in the Costa del Sol and Costa Blanca regions which have local knowledge and experience of acting for British customers.
Banco Halifax Hispania offers variable and fixed rate mortgages in Euros, secured on the Spanish property – with loans available up to a maximum of 70% of the property’s value.
An increase in new routes from budget airlines has helped the Spanish market to take off, with research from OAG showing that the number of low-cost flights to and from Spain is up 25% on last year (and low-cost operators within Spain have increased by 160%). This, in turn, has driven the development of new regional airports.
The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) recently reported that passenger numbers from UK airports increased to 217m – an 8% increase on previous year’s figures. Regional airports have also seen passenger figures triple from 1987 to 2015 and saw 9% growth in 2014 alone (increasing to 88 million passengers).
Looking at the survey data in more detail (as an indicator to local UK agents who might be able to identify local clients interested in overseas property), the highest growth in regional airports has been in Newcastle, which saw a 21% increase (0.8 million passengers), followed by Bristol at 19% (0.7 million) and Leeds Bradford airport at 17% (0.4 million).
Flights to Spain from the UK rose by 4% (1.2 million). Research from Euromonitor’s ‘Travel and Tourism in Spain’ report also found that one to three day breaks are the fastest growing type of holiday in Spain – accounting for 37% of all trips in 2014.