I have to admit to having huge admiration for those people who have been buying property in Spain with VIVA, not just today, or in fact now every day this year, but all the way back to the day – now nearly 5 years ago – when there was a run on the Northern Rock bank in the UK.
Yes, it seems scarcely credible that by the time this summer is out, it will be 5 whole years since then, and it will also be 4 years since the collapse of Lehmans which precipitated the entire worldwide credit crunch along with everything that has followed.
In many ways, because of all the recent talk of the Greek Crisis and a Spanish bank bailout, it all seems like it was just yesterday. It just seems never ending really. It goes on, and on, and on…
Yet a couple of years back, whilst at the epicentre of the crisis, we would have had to admit there were some days in a row, within VIVA, when there wasn’t a single Buyer / Vendor Sale being handled by us. However, we certainly never went a whole week – on zero – not within that entire time.
Some brave individuals – bless their souls – always had the faith, commitment, desire, interest, financial nous or just plain dream fulfilment and intention to actually buy a property in Spain, and went through with it.
That of course is why VIVA is still here, still selling homes, and now back to doing so every single day. How else would we ourselves have survived and now thrived to where we stand today…?
So yes, of course people are buying. They always have been, right throughout ‘la crisis’. And having been through the past 5 traumatic years – following several years of Spanish real estate problems before that and making at least a 7-year property downturn overall – we certainly foresee that people will continue to buy.
Well think about it. More than 1 million British people alone have bought homes in Spain. What was that? Was it a fad? Just a passing phase? No, of course not. And then think of how many people from the rest of Northern Europe – and then beyond… how many of them have bought a home in Spain.
Think about this… it’s just been reported that in May, of a record-breaking 3.2 million searches conducted on the UK’s major property portal Rightmove Overseas, over 800,000 of these searches were for Spanish property. In fact, Spain dominates the portal, accounting for a quarter of all searches, with the traditional locations of the Costa del Sol and Costa Blanca being the main areas of interest.
What does that say?
And what does it say if we back up Rightmove’s data by telling you that VIVA’s own website is now generating a 50%+ increase in web visitors year on year?
Perhaps it says that one shouldn’t always get caught up in the extreme hype and distress of the 24-hour news channels, and frantic press reporting.
We think it says that life goes on, and while the media, the markets, and possibly even the politicians might all be hooked on the adrenaline of the world going to the edge every couple of months, the fact is, not any of us are toppling over the cliff.
As I pointed out in a previous post, Warren Buffett said “We might be in recession but we will come out of it”. And having seen 11,500+ people buy property in Spain through VIVA this past almost 15 years, I can tell you that they bought for over 11,000 different reasons, their own individual reasons, and mainly irrespective of the times, of the economy, or global stuff.
They all in fact bought because it was their time to buy. Most of them of course still own and are still happily enjoying their time in Spain right through the crisis. Only a tiny proportion of them have their homes for sale with us. Trust me on this, there are a lot of happy people owning, holidaying and or living here on the Costa del Sol.
There always have been, there always will be. And now… there are more and more people returning to view. OK, we suffer a dip when Greece votes on austerity and then goes back to the polling booths for a second time just 6 weeks later, but 85% of Greeks have already said they don’t want to leave Europe, and nor does anyone else.
Time goes by and moves on. My advice? Don’t look to the news channels, come and see for yourself.