Daily Mail reports a slump in villa values

The Daily Mail has reported that Spanish property prices are still falling and many homes are left unsold. The focus of the article is on southern Spain and recommends those trying to sell-up and cut their losses to hold out for another 2 years.

The Spanish government estimates there are 700,000 unsold new-build houses across the country. In the article, the Mail reveals some of the heartbreak behind the figures…

Like Marian Henderson, who moved to the south of Spain seven years ago with £1million in her pocket. But when – or perhaps that should be if – she finally makes it back to Britain, she will be lucky to do so with one quarter of that sum. She’s no spendthrift – the money she has lost has been on bricks and mortar. Her home, a beautiful four-bedroom country house surrounded by orange groves, a swimming pool and stables, was once valued at £725,000. Today, it is on the market for just under £270,000.

Marian’s is a desperately sad tale, but, unfortunately, it is not an unusual one. Across Spain, the British expat dream is fast turning into a nightmare. Having left these shores in the hope of finding a better life abroad, a legion of Brits have instead found themselves caught in the midst of an economic storm. The properties in which they invested have fallen in value by as much as 50 per cent in the past four years. This is down to massive over-supply. The Spanish government estimates there are 700,000 unsold new-build houses across the country.Of these, 400,000 are on the coast, the vast majority in the south of Spain where many British people have bought properties. Take into account the fact that there are the same number of older homes being advertised for sale, and it is little wonder that experts are predicting prices will fall still further.

As the property bubble has burst, so the rest of the Spanish economy has suffered. The banks are sitting on vast amounts of bad debt, while the construction industry has collapsed. Reports recently showed that of 60,000 property sector companies, 23,600 have gone bust, with debts of more than £100 billion. As a result of this economic turmoil, Spain is now in the midst of its worst recession for 50 years. A record  4.6 million Spanish workers, or one in five, are now unemployed. This figure is the highest in Europe.

And if that weren’t bad enough, many British expats, particularly pensioners, have been hit by the weakness of the pound against the euro. Where a £10,000-a-year pension would have been the equivalent of €16,500 nine years ago, today it is worth nearly €5,000 less.

Hardly surprising, then, that so many Britons are desperate to bail out and return home. Companies that specialise in exchanging large sums of money – such as the proceeds from a house sale – have seen a 50 per cent increase in transactions linked to repatriations.

You can read the full article here : http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1359029/Spains-villa-values-HALVED-UK-immigrants-afford-come-home.html#