Selling or renting property: These are the timelines set by the market

These are the prices the market estimates for selling or renting a home.

Selling or renting property: These are the timelines set by the market

How long does it take to sell or rent a property? It’s the million-dollar question. The answer isn’t simple because, in both cases, it depends on multiple factors. Of course, price is a key factor, along with the type of property, but also the location and the condition of the property.

According to the latest data from the Ministry of Housing and Urban Agenda, home sales rose by 1.8% in the first quarter, after five consecutive quarters of decline, with more than 160,000 transactions. This increase occurred as the price of second-hand homes in Spain reached historic levels, standing at 2,120 euros per square meter in May.

Regarding rentals, prices are also straining the market and reaching exorbitant levels, especially in the main urban centers of our country. According to data from the Fotocasa Real Estate Index, the price has risen to 12.12 €/m2 in May 2024, but this doesn’t seem to slow down rentals. Finding an apartment or a room in Barcelona is now 33.3% more expensive than five years ago and in Madrid, more than 25%. According to data collected by Idealista, during this period, the average rental price has increased by 28.2% nationally.

How long does it take to sell a property? And to rent it?

Surprisingly, even though property and rental prices continue to rise in our country, some properties were on the market for barely a day, in the case of rentals, or just under a week, in the case of sales. This is due to very high demand and very low supply.

According to Idealista, during the first quarter of the year, 13% of properties sold were not listed for even seven days, while 21% of homes took between one week and one month to sell. Another 22% of homes sold during this period took between one and three months; 31% between three months and one year, and 13% more than a year.

Express sales are more frequent in capitals like Granada, where 23% found a buyer in less than seven days. They are followed by Tarragona (20%), Barcelona (19%), Valencia (19%), Ávila (18%), Huesca and Madrid (17% each). Santander and Huelva share a percentage of 16%, and Pontevedra, Vitoria, Albacete, Pamplona, Burgos, and Seville score 15%.

At the other end, in Lugo, only 1% of sales are express. Next are Ceuta, Palencia, and Teruel, with 4% each, Ciudad Real and Castellón de la Plana (5%), and Cádiz with 6%.

Express Rentals Surge

Regarding rentals, the first “Rental Observatory in Spain”, conducted by the Safe Rental Foundation in collaboration with the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, states that it takes an average of 22 days to rent a property, although with significant differences between provinces and regions. Sergio Cardona, an analyst at the Rental Observatory of the Safe Rental Foundation, presented this data on the “Real Estate Investment” program on Capital Radio, along with the conclusions of this first barometer, which points to a marked decrease in supply since the pandemic and an increase in demand pressure.

According to the Idealista portal, 18% of the homes rented during the first quarter through the real estate portal were not listed for even 24 hours before finding a tenant, compared to 16% recorded in the same period the previous year.

Demand is far above the available properties, which is also intensifying the phenomenon of express rentals. 26 provincial capitals, led by Tarragona and San Sebastián, are the most affected by this circumstance. In Tarragona, 31% of rented homes lasted barely a day on the market, while in San Sebastián, it reaches 29%. They are followed by Santa Cruz de Tenerife (27%), Palma and Huelva (26%), León and Lugo (24%), and Guadalajara, Alicante, Castellón de la Plana, Pontevedra, and Jaén, with 21%.

Also exceeding the national average are Lleida, Vitoria, Córdoba, and Seville, with 20% of rentals completed in less than 24 hours. Meanwhile, Almería, Zaragoza, Toledo, and Valladolid recorded 19%, while Ourense and Santander reached 18%.

Below the national average are cities like Barcelona, Málaga, and Logroño, with 17% of express rentals. They are followed by A Coruña, Valencia, Girona, and Oviedo (16%), while in Madrid, the rate stood at 15%. Cuenca is the capital with the least impact on express rentals, with only 8% of rented homes in less than a day. Segovia and Badajoz are also below 10%.

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