Houses purchases reach a record high in October
Houses purchases reach a record high in October despite conflict over the mortgage tax.
Despite the judicial controversy over the mortgage tax, 43,536 property sales were recorded at the registers in October–the highest figure for the tenth month since 2007–an annual increase of 15.8%
Housing sales in Spain advanced at an unstoppable rate last October. Not even controversy following the Supreme Court’s ruling on October 16th regarding payment of the mortgage tax dampened the strong market. According to data released by the INE this Wednesday, during the tenth month, 43,536 home sales were recorded in property registers throughout Spain. This figure represents an inter-annual increase, compared to the same period of 2017, of 15.8%. Although October has not been the busiest month this year (in January and May, more than 47,000 sales occurred), it is the best October since the housing bubble burst in 2007.
This statistic has broken the “curse” that traditionally accompanies the tenth month of the year. October is never an auspicious month; sales rarely surpass those made in September, an initiatory month following the bustle of summer holiday sales. However, 2018 has not followed that trend. While the number of homes sold was just 770 more than the previous month (1.8% more), it’s a symbolic change because even during the height of the housing bubble, something like that never happened.
It appears the chaos introduced by the Supreme Court when it ruled for the Tax on Documented Legal Acts (IAJD) (Impuesto sobre Actos Jurídicos Documentados) barely affected the growth of the market. The controversy affected the last ten days of the month, since the court’s decision didn’t become known until Thursday, October 18. On Friday, October 19, the president of the third room decided to take it to the Plenary, where it would be corrected three weeks later, with little effect, because meanwhile, the government acted as mediator. If sales had fallen, we could debate what percentage corresponded to the traditional drop compared to September versus what percentage had been caused by the mess in created by the high court, but the rise in sales invalidates those questions. We will never know if sales could have increased even more than that without the court’s decision, but there is little doubt that the judicial controversy did not prevent a record month.
Madrid stagnates and the islands recede
Of the Autonomous Community, Murcia experienced the greatest inter-annual progression in their housing market. Compared to October 2017, operations grew by 51.2%. They were followed by Navarra (41.3%) and La Rioja (35.6%). Among the most populated communities, both Andalusia (25.9%), Catalonia (23.5%) and Valencian Community (17.7%) showed progressions above the national average. In contrast, Madrid experienced completely neutral growth (0.0%). Below that, and with year-on-year falls, were only Aragón (-0.7%), the Balearic Islands (-5.2%) and the Canary Islands (-6.8%).
Source: El Pais