How many people can you fit in a Portuguese apartment? Hundreds, according to this month’s Investment Watch. The report, which ranks the level of interest in TheMoveChannel.com’s listings, saw investors piling into flats on the Albufeira coast in July.
The sea-view apartments were only built with two bedrooms, but buyers rushed to squeeze into the properties, despite the gloomy European economy.
Indeed, Portuguese house prices have dropped by over 11 per cent since last year, according to official figures, leaving the market with no immediate sign of recovery. But the low prices seem to have done the trick for the Faro resort, attracting over 2.5 times the number of enquiries received by TheMoveChannel.com’s second most popular property: a hotel investment in Leeds.
Buy-to-let property continued to prove popular among investors last month, with the 12 per cent yields generated by the Leeds hotel attracting slightly more attention than a development of student pods in Sunderland, which ranked in fourth place. More ambitious buyers went as far as Canada in search of a guaranteed monthly income – the country’s first ever appearance in the Investment Watch Top 10.
While returns remained a priority, though, investors showed they were no longer afraid to go back to the euro last month. Indeed, Spain accounted for two of the top 10 listings, thanks to La Manga’s rental properties, and Italy made its second consecutive monthly appearance as Lake Como apartments won on lifestyle appeal. But after months of the UK, USA and Brazil dominating TheMoveChannel.com enquiries, Portugal’s resort landed the biggest surprise punch, leaving buyers crowding into the two-bedroom flats little room to move.
TheMoveChannel.com director Dan Johnson comments: “Portugal has always been one of the most popular destinations for property buyers on TheMoveChannel.com, but no one expected apartments in Albufeira to receive the most enquiries in July. Apart from the UK, the only European country to top the Investment Watch chart this year has been Spain – and that was with a remarkable investment property. With the apartments’ offers limited until the end of August, were Faro’s low-priced flats enough to spark a one-off flashmob? Or are buyers finally starting to return to the Eurozone in bigger numbers?”