Marbella property market returning to health

Spain’s Marbella – known as a popular tourist destination for Brits – has seen a surge in sales in the first quarter of 2021, data from Registradores has found.

Some 833 properties changed hands in the first quarter, an increase of 22% year-on-year.

The neighbouring municipality of Benahavis, home to La Zagaleta, saw a similar trend.

With Brexit making it tougher for Brits to reside in Europe, some UK residents with homes in Spain are rethinking their long-term plans.

Indeed, Brits are now limited to spending only 90 out of every 180-day period in the European Union.

Despite this, interest from foreigners remains strong.

According to Spain’s Ministry of Development, nationally 141,000 sales were completed in the first three months of the year. Some 13.1% of these were bought by foreign buyers.

Of these, 4.5% were non-resident buyers at time when strict travel restrictions remained in place.

With double-jabbed EU, US and UK residents now permitted to travel to Spain, sales activity is expected to rise in the second half of 2021.

For those able to overcome the Brexit restrictions, a second home or a permanent move abroad could be an attractive response to the pandemic.

Why remote working in Marbella is on the rise

In 2020, Marbella became the first Spanish city to gain 5G network coverage. As a result it has broadband speeds 52% above Spain’s national average according to Fair Internet Report.

It also has excellent international schools, with some offering the British curriculum.

Meanwhile it’s an hour to Malaga, which is emerging as a tech hub.

Mirroring the UK move, the local Andalusian government has reduced stamp duty or transfer tax (Impuesto de Transmisiones Patrimoniales or ITP) for properties bought before 31 December 2021.

Existing properties are now subject to a reduced rate of 7%, from 8-10%, while new builds have a rate of 1.2%, down from 1.5%.

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