Whilst £50,000 is a reasonably large sum of money, property wise, it isn’t going to get you very far, until now.
According to the Daily Mail, there are a number of rural Spanish villages on the market, starting at the astonishing price of £50,000. The villages were left abandoned after families fled the countryside during Spain’s recession and according to the National Statistics Institute, there are estimated to be in excess of 3000 of these abandoned ghost hamlets available for purchase.
Ribeira Sacra, the village highlighted by the Mail is on the market to an adventurous investor for the relatively miniscule sum of £75,000. For the same price as an Audi A6, you can obtain the entire village plus six houses, a warehouse and 32,000 square feet of land.
In Britain, the concept of buying an entire village for such a modest fee would be laughed at, but the housing market in Spain is in stark contrast with the one which we are used to. In Q4 2013, the average house price in Spain was £195,000 compared to the UK’s princely sum of £250,000, with a further 8 per cent increase expected this year. Whilst there may only be a 25 per cent difference between these two figures, Spain has certainly been hit very hard by the economic crisis, with unemployment at an all time high of 25.3 per cent.
The European recession has caused more and more rural townsfolk to lose their jobs, and therefore head into the cities looking for work, leaving many villages abandoned. As nobody had stepped forward and laid claim to any of the villages, they had fallen into the hands of the government, who offloaded them at reportedly tiny prices to estate agents who despite the low prices are selling them off at a profit.
The estate agent quoted by the Daily Mail said that these villages were predominantly being purchased by couples in their 50s or 60s who are looking for a project they can renovate and then settle into their retirement in. He added that around 80 per cent of buyers are from overseas and that around 30 per cent of those are British nationals.
Mark Adkinson, the CEO of Galician Country Homes, told AOL that “A lot of people who are interested in this sort of purchase want to get away from it all and go back to nature”. He also said that his website gets around 15,000 hits a month and that 33 per cent of them are potential buyers from the UK.
Ron Wilkinson of Alta Vista Property says that despite the conditions of the villages, there are still many interested potential buyers. “Many of the villages are quite run down and dilapidated“ he said “however, with a certain amount of restoration and renovation, I am confident that they can be sold for a significant profit. We are receiving many inquiries into the sale of these areas, and people seem to be really behind the idea of restoring a forgotten village”.
Bradley shore is an experienced travel and investment blogger, his main interests are the Spanish property market and property investment, he writes for clients such as AltaVista property’s and more property companies, in his spare time he writes freelance and likes to influence and help people with his writing.