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Valencia: Up-and-coming hotspot for property buyers

The autonomous region of Valencia, with its eponymous provincial capital, is located on the southeast coast of mainland Spain, at the same latitude as the islands of Majorca and Ibiza. Set between Alicante in the south and Castellón to the north, the province of Valencia enjoys worldwide renown as the largest producer of citrus fruits in Europe and the birthplace of paella. It boasts typically Mediterranean scenery and a mild climate all year round. Thanks to its modern tourist infrastructure and rich cultural heritage, Valencia is not only a popular holiday destination but has also managed to further build on its status as an attractive residential and investment location, despite the pandemic. “The level of international demand has been especially noticeable since 2020. The comparatively moderate prices, low cost of living and high quality of life are attracting expats and foreign investors in particular,” says Miguel Ángel Cantos, Managing Director of Engel & Völkers Valencia.

 Siena (SI)
- (Image source: Engel & Völkers Moraira)

Provincial capital Valencia: Authenticity and quality of life draw international clients

Although Valencia is the third largest city in Spain, with a population of almost 800,000, it retains a traditional, convivial flair and authentic vibe thanks to the original layout of its streets, along with its rich cultural heritage and the broad diversity of neighbourhoods that set it apart from other more homogeneous cities. The City of Arts and Sciences has a reputation for being vibrant, urban and cosmopolitan. InterNations named Valencia the world’s most livable city for expats in 2020. 25 percent of property buyers had primary homes abroad prior to the pandemic in 2019. Currently 34 percent of buyers come from abroad – and this trend is on the rise. Among the frontrunners here are Germans, French and Swiss looking either for renovated properties for permanent owner-occupation, as a second home, or as a profitable capital investment.

The districts in the highest demand are those in the city centre, including Ciutat Vella, L’Eixample, and Extramurs, or in direct coastal locations in Poblats Marítims, there especially in the authentic El Cabanyal neighbourhood. With its colourful buildings and tiled facades, the Malvarrosa beach in El Cabanyal is a magnet for young international property buyers. In 2020, El Cabanyal was placed third in a ranking of the hippest neighbourhoods in Europe. Only some 17 percent of transactions here were realised by Spanish clients last year and international buyers accounted for a remarkable 83 percent of market activity. “Investors recognise the vitality and great growth potential of the former fishing quarter, especially as prices are still moderate,” Miguel Ángel Cantos reveals. In 2021 the price per square metre is up to 2,778 euros. Refurbished detached properties are selling for as much as 990,000 euros.

Historically, the prestigious L’Eixample and Pla del Real districts in the city centre, known for their grand avenues, imposing heritage buildings and excellent shopping, also rank among the most expensive locations, with top prices per square metre of up to 5,000 euros. Luxurious penthouses with high-end features listed here for 4.5 million euros. Equally popular is the Old Town of Ciutat Vella, which – as well as being a major tourist attraction – is also sought after among the local population due to its many recreational offerings. For premium apartments the price per square metre is up to 3,500 euros.

Valencia’s coastlines: Desirable second home and retirement location for foreigners

Demand for expansive properties in the region around Valencia has been on the rise since the outbreak of the pandemic. Investors are focusing their interest in particular on small towns in coastal locations with an authentic flair. The most sought-after properties are those with sea views, those located right by the sea, and those within walking distance to the beach. The province of Valencia has the highest number of blue flag beaches in Spain: This international seal of quality stands for a standard of excellence in both the water and environment, as well as in sustainable tourism and the high degree of security. The coastal region is especially popular with private buyers as a second home or all-year-round retirement property. Some 90 minutes by car south of the provincial capital lies the small town of Calpe, nestled between the mountains and the shoreline of the Costa Blanca. Engel & Völkers only recorded transactions with international buyers here – 43 percent of which involved German buyers, 29 percent Dutch buyers, 14 percent Belgian buyers and 14 percent clients from England. Both families and pensioners are drawn to new builds or detached properties offering ample space and a garden with a swimming pool. One square metre in the exclusive Pueblo Mascarat quarter, positioned between Calpe and the neighboring village of Altea, can cost up to 3,830 euros, while modern villas can fetch up to 3.7 million euros.

Outlook: Valencia set to retain its attraction with international buyers

According to Engel & Völkers, Valencia’s real estate market will remain a magnet for international clients and is well placed to continue building on its appeal as a primary and secondary place of residence. In particular, its dynamic business scene and diverse companies make the provincial capital and the region of Valencia an ideal place to live for young entrepreneurs, as well as for families and those seeking somewhere to retire to. “We anticipate that property prices will continue to rise. Since prices here are more moderate than on the Balearic Islands, for instance, while homes offer equally promising potential returns, now is a good time to enter the Valencia real estate market,” says Miguel Ángel Cantos.

Further information about the Valencia residential property market can be found (in English) in the “Market Report for Spain/Andorra 2020-2021”, published by Engel & Völkers: https://www.engelvoelkers.com/en-es/spain/blog/engelvoelkers-presents-its-market-report-2020-2021/

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