Foreign investors in Valencia bought 16,619 Spanish properties last year, representing an increase of 17% over 2012, with a value of 1.7 billion euro, an 11% increase on the previous year.

The data released by the Ministry of Infrastructure, Planning and Environment also confirms that the Alicante province is the biggest area of interest to foreign buyers, with 13,786 properties sold, with the resale properties fairing particularly well. In financial terms however, Alicante accounts for 87% of the total value of purchases made.

In terms of where those buyers come from, Russia is leading the way, having tripled the number of sales since 2009. Buyers from the UK are now in second place, with those from Algeria also showing a particular growth.

In 2008 the majority of property purchases made by foreigners were from the United Kingdom, with 40% of all sales, whereas in 2013, this percentage has dropped to 13%. The areas which have increased are the Russian market, up by 13%, the collection of Nordic countries with a 19% increase, Algeria up 9% and buyers from Belgium up 8%.

The positive trend has been seen since 2008, where sales rose 25.4% in the first quarter. In the last three months of 2013, that figure rose to 31.4%. Sales to non-residents have seen a bigger increase, with 14.3% in the first quarter of 2008, compared to 36.6% in the last of 2013.

In total, during the last quarter of 2013, 33.6% of all homes sold to foreigners in Spain were in the Valencia region, with the second most important location, Andalusia, being responsible for 19.9%. The next key locations in terms of percentage of national sales were Cataluña with 15.5%, the Canarias with 11.3% and the Balearics with 6.5%.

The Ministerial Department plans to hold a meeting in Madrid next month, with businessmen, property agents and estate agencies, among others, in order to introduce initiatives and developments to reactivate the productive activity and employment increase, intent on increasing the use of housing for foreigners.

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