Banks and home buyers seem to be more confident

Spanish banks regain confidence in real estate loans.

One of the various encouraging aspects of the latest figures published by Spain's notaries for November, in which further indications are shown that the country’s property market is at last achieving stability and even limited growth, is the increase in the extent to which residential property purchases are being financed by mortgage loans.

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The average 10-year bond yield of the US, Japan and Europe dropped this month to the lowest ever making property investments more attractive.

Investors who weren’t allowed to invest overseas before 2012, are flooding into the global market for prime commercial real estate after being given more freedom to deploy their $1.6 trillion of assets. That has meant good times for sellers of trophy real estate in major cities. 

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Spain: Expect some retail outlets to come onto the market in prime areas in large cities early next year

Angel Garcia, whose family has sold hand-tailored shirts since 1857, will be shutting his shop on Madrid’s Gran Via in the New Year after his landlord decided to raise the rent almost 10-fold. 

At the stroke of midnight on Dec. 31, a rent-control rule introduced under Spanish dictator General Francisco Franco comes to an end, spelling financial turmoil for thousands of small store owners.

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Spain: Residential construction is picking up and selling fast in prime areas of Madrid and Barcelona. Prices started to rise slightly in those prime areas too

On a busy street in the heart of Madrid, Juan Jose Perucho shows where he is going to raise one of the tallest residential blocks seen in the capital, on a piece of land equal to five-times the size of a football pitch area which he bought from Madrid’s subway in November.

‘We have sold-out the developement faster than ever’, said the chief executive of real estate firm Ibosa referring to a 25-storey tower with a swimming pool and hanging gardens. ‘I have never seen anything like that during my 24 years in the business’.

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The falling oil price and declining euro could aid Spain in possibly surpassing its 2% growth target for 2015

The plunging oil price is giving an unexpected lift to Europe’s crisis-battered southern periphery as decreasing fuel costs help spur demand. 

Spain, Europe’s fourth-largest economy, could add as much as 1 percent to annual growth with oil prices between $80-90 a barrel, the government said. Italy, which is in its fourth year of recession, stands to boost GDP 0.3 percentage points with a sustained $10 oil price drop, according to BNP Paribas SA. 

“There’s no doubt lower oil prices will act as a stimulus to growth in the region,” Frederik Ducrozet, a Paris-based economist at Credit Agricole, said by phone. “Greece, Spain, Portugal and Italy would be clear beneficiaries.”

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Commercial Real Estate Investment in Spain: Very good transaction levels in 2014. But who is buying what?

Among the 236 real estate deals sealed in Spain during the first nine months of the ongoing year, noteworthy are the purchase of the Edificio España building by China’s richest man Wang Jialin who paid €265 million for it, and the €2 billion amount invested year-to-date by local REITs (known as Socimis).

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Spain: Madrid leading the game in property transactions

Spanish property market goes out of the woods and it is proven by statistics. According to the first half of the year data published by the Ministry of Public Works, unsubsidized housing market set in motion €22.25 billion, by 31% more than during the same period of time in 2013 (€16.97 billion).

The rise is welcomed after three consecutive years of decrease.

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Italy’s steps to transform its real estate investment trust industry mirror changes made by Spain that helped attract foreign investors including Bill Gross and George Soros. 

The Italian changes include lifting the maximum stake a single investor can hold in a REIT, known as a SIIQ in Italy, to 60 percent from 51 percent, according to a decree published in the state bulletin on Sept. 12. It also reduces the amount of recurring rental income the company must distribute to investors to 70 percent from 85 percent.

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Spain: It is getting increasingly difficult to find good deals in size, with so many funds looking for discounted property

Spain: It is getting increasingly difficult to find good deals in size, with so many funds looking for discounted property. While Socimis (=Spanish REITs) don't pay tax on a corporate level, please note that you still owe dividend tax as a shareholder. 

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Spanish Home Prices Rise 0.8% on Annual Basis

Spanish home prices rose in the second quarter for the first time since 2008, adding to signs that the property market is stabilizing more than six years after triggering the worst recession in the country’s democratic history. 

Prices rose 0.8 percent from a year earlier, the first annual gain since the first quarter of 2008, according to data compiled by the National Statistics Institute. Values climbed 1.7 percent from the previous quarter, the Madrid-based Statistics Institute said.

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P2P lending is the next big thing!

The head of consumer-product marketing at Google Inc. and a former general counsel for a travel website are seeking to transform the mortgage-finance industry. Michael Burry, the hedge-fund manager who foresaw the housing market’s nosedive, is betting they can. 

Brett Crosby left his post at Google last week to join Brew Johnson, once a lawyer for a company acquired by TripAdvisor Inc., to start PeerStreet Inc., a Los Angeles-based online platform for financing real estate through a form of crowdfunding. They’re partnering with small, non-bank lenders whose short-term commercial-property loans they can fund using a throng of individual investors.

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