The Costa del Sol is one of the most sought after areas for foreign property buyers in the world with its superb climate, Mediterranean lifestyle and glamorous resorts and marinas, and every sign shows that this trend is set to continue.
Underpinning the popularity for property purchase is the sheer number of tourists that visit the area each year, reaching 12.5 million last year, a 6.42% rise on the year before. The correlation is simple, tourists naturally convert to home buyers.
There are many reasons why so many people purchase a property in the Costa del Sol and we look at the most popular ones.
The Costa del Sol is easy to get to from the major cities in Europe and beyond. Malaga airport is connected to over 120 destinations in 60 countries by close to 70 airlines and is one of Spain’s busiest airports with more than 18 million passengers passing through last year. Gibraltar airport’s expanding connections add further options to anyone wishing to visit the area.
These easily accessible international hubs make the Costa del sol the ideal location for both weekend breaks and longer holidays making it the perfect destination for owning a second home. This connectivity also suits the increasing number of buyers who buy property for full time relocation as it is perfect for both business travel and visiting family.
Perhaps the main reason why people visit and live on the Costa del Sol is the weather. With 300 days of sunshine every year, the area offers the best climate in mainland Europe, making it the perfect escape for Northern Europeans looking for warmth.
The Costa del Sol has enormous diversity to appeal to both resident and tourist alike. Beautiful beaches, outstanding natural beauty, over 50 golf courses, bars and restaurants to appeal to any taste and an enormous variety of shops. Excellent transport links ensure that the Costa del Sol is the perfect starting point from which to explore Andalusia, its historic treasures of Cordoba, Seville and Granada and natural beauty allowing you to ski in the mountains hike through the forests and marvel at the wildlife and splendour of its national parks.
Quality of Life
The sunny weather means that life is lived outside, in contrast to the claustrophobic indoor lifestyle led in the North of Europe, but the Costa del Sol is much more than a just a suntan. The hallmark of the Costa del Sol is it really does offer something for everyone.
Leisure time offers a myriad of choices for all the family and for every budget. Beyond the beaches there are theme parks, water parks, safari parks and a huge range of sports activities on offer. For families it is a perfect location and a safe place for kids to holiday or grow up.
Life continues well into the night in the bars and restaurants and at weekends it is not unusual to see the bars and cafes full of families until the early hours enjoying the warm evenings.
The Costa del Sol is also beneficial to your health. It is well known that the Mediterranean diet is one of the healthiest the world and is rich in fish, fresh fruit and vegetables, salads, pulses and olive oil.
For residents, an important factor is the infrastructure of schools, both Spanish and International, some of which offer a British education and Curriculum. There are both private and public hospitals, and if you qualify, the Spanish health service is one of the best in the world.
Even if you don’t speak a word of Spanish, there are services to help you navigate the public systems, and almost everything in the private sector is available in the English language.
Cost of Living
Northern Europeans and British particularly discover that bills such as rubbish collection, local taxes, electricity, public transport and food are much lower than they are used to. Dining out can cost as little as a few Euros and drinks are (dangerously) cheap!
Even if you don’t speak Spanish your social life will not be hampered as there is a large and growing international resident community within which English is the norm. British, Americans, Irish, Dutch, Swedes and many more mix and mingle in a fascinating cosmopolitan society.
Value for money real estate
From the palatial villas designed for millionaires to a humble studio apartment or a rural home, the comparative property prices with other areas in northern Europe are low, offering excellent value for money. Along the Costa del Sol there are many areas that suit the budget home buyer and a competitive mortgage market with low interest rates makes property purchase very affordable.
Property prices on the Costa del Sol still have a good margin to rise before they hit their 2007 peak values and every quarter sees a steady growth. This security in capital value assures a safe investment and there is no sign of the market “bubbling”. Coupled with this are the potential rental returns as values in both the permanent letting and tourist markets rise ensuring a high level of interest from buy-to-let investors. New property developments have once again started appearing on the market, and these are much sought after by investors, sometimes selling out in within days of their launch.