SPAIN´S city centre home owners in places like Madrid and Barcelona are buying properties in the outskirts and rural areas to avoid catching the coronavirus.
That´s a trend that has been noticed by one of Spain´s largest residential developers, Aedas Homes.
Since the pandemic took a grip in March, Aedas says that they´ve noticed a 25 per cent increase in inquiries by people looking for key lifestyle changes due to the health emergency.
That means going into city outskirts or into rural areas, with demand rising for properties with a garden or a large terrace.
Aedas Chief Executive Officer David Martinez said:- “Spaniards have endured one of the strictest lockdowns in Europe to stave off the spread of Covid-19, leaving most of them stuck in apartments and houses for two months with little or no access to outside spaces.”
“But the quarantine has also proved that working from home can be as productive as from an office for many employees.”
“There are early indicators that the pandemic coronavirus is starting to change the way of buying homes. For example, we are getting far more interest in developments on the outskirts in Madrid, rather than for those in the city centre”, Martinez added.
The trends in Spain are mirroring what is happening elsewhere in the world, where in New York, estate agents have noticed increased demand for rental properties in the suburbs, which offer more space.
In Turkey, the prices for homes in the outskirts of Istanbul have gone up by 20 per cent since the start of the coronavirus crisis.
In Spain, the rise in customer inquiries also includes searches for larger properties and for those that can accommodate working from home, such as having a spare room that can serve as an office, according to Aedas.
According to David Martinez, the problems caused by the pandemic may also reduce some of the hassles involved in buying a property.
“Two of the key municipalities in which we operate, Madrid and Malaga, have said they will relax some rules by eliminating the need for a certificate of habitation, which on average takes between three and six months to obtain,” Martinez said.
“Imagine how with a home sold, finished, ready for occupation the client can’t occupy it, can’t pay because a municipal official hasn’t gone to visit and ensure that everything is all right,” Martinez added,
“We hope that other local administrations will follow suit.”