The market splits in two

Posted by on Mar 30, 2017 in News

Signs of British nerves are drowned out by a European show of force.

February continued 2017’s bouncy start, with over 550,000 people visiting Kyero. They generated just under 62,000 sales leads for our agents, a 25% annual rise.

Looking back over a year of double digit growth, I’ll admit it was becoming hard to pick out the real strengths and weaknesses in the international market. When every indicator is green, it’s tough to separate trends from threats.

However, I think March 2017 will mark a change of narrative.

European buyers step on the gas

Spain has always put a focus on British buyers, but it’s easy to forget they account for just 1 in 5 foreign sales. Most market statistics break buyers down by country (putting Brits forever in the no.1 spot), but European buyers are a much bigger market.

If we report European buyers collectively, the picture looks very different:

International searches for Spanish property

Over 60% of Kyero’s audience are now European, and with traffic from this group hitting double digit growth since the summer, it’s easy to see where the real sales drive is coming from. To help clarify the picture, our monthly market report now breaks the audience into both national and European groups.

In a market that is increasingly multilingual, Kyero’s decision to operate in 13 languages has turned out to be a reassuring move. We’re nicely placed to follow a shifting audience.

British pensioners take fright

A strange thing happened to British traffic in February: Visitors hit an all-time high, then they blinked.

UK visits grew 36% on the previous year, but following months of enquiries growing at a similar rate, enquiry growth stalled. Sales enquiries from British buyers grew just 1.5% versus February 2016.

How can UK visitor numbers reach record levels, while enquiry growth dries up?

It means British buyers still want to buy, but they’re becoming less likely to progress their search to a viewing. Listening in on buyer chatter shows Article 50 is the obvious culprit. Brits are now in a holding pattern while they wait to see how Brexit negotiations progress.

Arguably the group with the most to lose from Brexit are British pensioners, and we detected clear signs of their nervousness in the latest traffic demographics:

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