The coronavirus pandemic forced a high percentage of Spaniards to telework. Despite this figures has been declining as the social distancing measures have been lifted, many firms are already considering the option of offering their employees a more flexible way of working, combining days working face-to-face in the office with working remotely. Iin this article experts at CaixaBank Research will analyse its implications for urban mobility and, from a longer-term perspective, for the residential real estate market.
Spanish property market
Bankia Estudios | Property transactions in the Spanish market have plummeted. Home sales fell sharply in May: only 22,394 transactions, the worst month of May in the available series since 2007, and less than half of the transactions recorded a year ago (48,351 in May 2019). In any event, the deterioration reflects the logical effects of the sector closing down due to the state of alarm. In the second half of the year, the reactivation of the economy, the labour market and, above all, family income will determine the behaviour of demand.
Spain’s property sector continues generating good news: housing purchases over the last two years have been rising at double digit rates, prices increasing ten months in a row around 4%. Real estate companies as well as Socimis underlie behind this positive trend. Merlin Properties is a top pick in the real estate sector. It has a portfolio of top quality, diversified assets.
J.L.M. Campuzano (Spanish Banking Association) Data on the Spanish property market reveals the same trend as over the last few months: a moderate recovery in prices, at the same time as sales continue (adjusted for the 2016/2017 calendar difference with respect to Holy Week)
Non-subsidised Spanish housing prices grew 0.9% on as quarterly basis and 2.2% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2017, according to the statistics on the tax valuation of houses published by the Public Works Ministry. Minister Iñigo de la Serna flagged that it’s the eight consecutive quarter with price rises, although he ruled that there is an overheating in the sector.
Spain’s banks currently have on their books something close to 213 billion euros in property risks (assets and loans). Is that a lot or not? Judging by the recent reports from the Bank of Spain or Moody’s, the total is rather worrying: and we are not talking about small change but about the fact that our lenders still have an amount of property on their balance sheets equivalent to 20% of GDP.
Spain’s property market is consolidating its recovery in the residential segment, while commercial real estate is clearly in an upward trend. But the fact that Sareb still has a substantial amount of property assets to dispose of, some of them with discounts of over 50%, will keep a lid on prices for the time being.