ON THE UP: Property market growth appears to be here to stay

IN a market that has seen a slowing down of property sales growth, the sector looks at the many positive conditions that suggest growth will continue for some time to come.

Property sales figures for the Golden Triangle of Marbella, Estepona and Benahavis reflect a slowing down in the rate of growth, yet the overall indicators reveal that the local real estate sector remains in good health.

Price relations are usually the first sign of trouble, yet if one reviews the level of property prices and their increase over the past few years it becomes clear that there is no danger of a property bubble in the near future.

Home prices have risen solidly, that’s true, but they remain well below the level of most major centres in Europe and other parts of the world.

In other words, well below the areas where most buyers come from.

Moreover, interest rates are at a historic low and purchasing terms have improved greatly in recent times, so those requiring local loans can look to a revived yet solid mortgage sector that builds on a buying public which is more diversified than ever.

STEADY: Slowly rising prices in Spain are still below other European areas

Where the Costa del Sol was once overly dependent upon the British market, today’s buyers come from Scandinavia, the Benelux, France, Russia, Central and Eastern Europe, Morocco, the Middle East and of course the British Isles and Spain itself.

In addition – and it is still a trickle – interest from the USA, China and Latin America is nascent too.

This gives the local market greater stability and investor guarantees.

In addition another positive development positive for Marbella and the Costa del Sol which must be mentioned, is the change in the regional government in Sevilla, after 42 years of uninterrupted socialist rule.

Already we have seen signs of positive changes such as the dramatic cut in inheritance and gift taxes that pertain to Andalucia, in addition to the introduction of lower income tax rates designed to attract more foreign investment to the region.

Marbella closer to planning directive?

Although there has been no official announcement since the town hall under Mayor Angeles Muñoz vowed to reduce the waiting times for decisions on planning requests, work on completing the new planning directive, the Plan General de Ordenación Urbana (PGOU) is continuing apace.

One thing we do know is that the new coalition in power at the Andalucian regional government in Sevilla will be far more favourable to Marbella and its development plans than previous administrations have been for the past few decades.

Adam Neale (Columnist)

About Adam Neale (Columnist)

Adam Neale is the owner of Terra Meridiana, a real estate agency based in Estepona on the Costa del Sol covering areas such as Marbella, Estepona, Sotogrande and Benahavís. Adam has more than a decade of experience in the sales and rental markets and, as Property Insider for the Olive Press, will be providing useful advice for buyers, sellers, tenants and all those interested in living in southern Spain. You can contact Adam by phone at +34 951 318480, pay a visit to his office at 77 Calle Caridad, 29680 Estepona (Málaga) or just visit his website at www.terrameridiana.com

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