Italy and spain ‘slug it out’

Italy is hot on the heels of Spain in the investment popularity stakes…

Recent figures from Foreign Currency Direct property portal show that overall enquiries from November for Italy were 19% of the total market with only Spain more at 27%.      

Linda Travella of Casa Travella enthused that the development was ‘incredible’. She added: “There has been an initial surge of interest in the emerging markets of Eastern Europe but this tends to lead to speculation buying and with it comes inherent risks. Interestingly, figures show that the market has now turned on its head and reverted back to investors looking for established countries such as Italy where there is a track record of capital growth and rental returns.

Popularity of Italian Lakes rising

Ms Travella continued: “Italy has fine wines, superb cuisine and an excellent infrastructure plus a great many Italians speak some English. All of which makes owning a home in Italy a far better option than taking a chance on an emerging country. Within 2/3 years of these new countries coming onto the market, buying figures show that the tide has turned and that established countries are where investors choose to put their money”.

Ms Travella concluded: ”One of the most popular areas of Italy with buyers is the Lakes. These are a popular destination both in the winter for the skiing and the summer. With an approximate rental return of 5/9% and very few void periods they make excellent investments.

“The other area to look at is Western Liguria where buying closer to the sea will make a better investment even if initially more expensive.

The average property sale price in Italy is around £200,000. Recent information also suggests that there is a 12% increase in buying property abroad compared to last year all of which points to a stable overseas market in 2008.