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Article in Het Nieuwsblad - FOKUS 50 plus - March 28, 2022

For several years now, the number of Belgians buying a second home on the Spanish coast has been on the rise. This trend has accelerated due to corona. People are more likely to chase their Spanish dream and are also looking for an investment now that the money in the bank is not yielding anything.

The Belgian-Spanish real estate agency UNIQ Estates is going through busy times. “For six months, the demand for real estate on the Spanish coast has exploded. Belgians are among the largest buyers of real estate on the Spanish coast," says Stijn Herbosch. A few years ago, together with Serge Claes, he founded UNIQ Estates, a real estate agency that specializes in new-build real estate on the Spanish coast and has offices in Antwerp and Alicante.

The company assists Belgians in the choice and purchase of a new-build home or apartment on the Costa Blanca, Costa Calida and Costa Almeria. It is also in contact with customers after the sale. “Many Belgians buy an apartment on the Spanish coast with a view to renting out. In that case, we will arrange the rental license and follow-up up to the cleaning," says Claes.

Due to the low interest rates, many people are looking for an investment, according to the brokers, where a home on the Spanish coast is becoming increasingly popular. “Apartments are still affordable here, but the price is also on the rise. That means that your money will only increase in value if you buy an apartment here.”

A large proportion of the Belgian second residences on the Spanish coast are over 55s. People who are going to retire, have to work less and often have money saved. Since corona, more and more people have taken this step, Claes says. “Corona has made people think. The realization that you only live once has grown and that is why people decide more quickly to live their Spanish dream.”

There is also a growing group of people over 40 who are investing in Spanish real estate. Corona also plays a role here. After all, remote working is becoming more and more common. Claes speaks from his own experience. He represents the real estate agency in Spain. On the day of the interview, he had dinner with customers at a beach bar.

The motivation of people over 40 and 50 to go to Spain for a short stay or winter are the same: to enjoy Spanish life and the sun. And this at a lower cost of living. “Going to a restaurant is twice as cheap as in Belgium”, Herbosch gives an example.

You can buy a new-build apartment on the Costa Blanca from 170,000 euros. "You can't buy a room for that on the Belgian coast yet, and then you also have to wait and see if the weather is nice," concludes the Antwerp resident.

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