Barcelona is one of the most popular cities in Europe: even in the lowest season (November and February) it is full of tourists, and in summer the capital of Catalonia is simply overflowing with visitors. To buy an apartment in Barcelona means to invest into a relatively stable market, because properties here are always in demand and can be rented out without much difficulty.
The state of the market in Barcelona at the moment is quite ideal from the point of view of potential buyers. There are many properties on sale whose owners are not able to cover payments on mortgages that were taken out in more stable economic times, when prices in Barcelona were growing steadily. Supply is extensive, but the demand from locals isn't, and that's why a buyer with real money to spend is very welcome here. There is always a possibility of lowering the asking price, if you demonstrate a serious intention to buy. Many apartments in Barcelona are also sold by banks, which put foreclosed properties on the market after its owners lose the rights to the property for non-payment of their loans. Banks are not exceptionally open to negotiation, but they are very interested in selling the property quickly, and usually offer very attractive prices to begin with.
If you wish to buy an apartment in Barcelona, you may want to take note of apartments that are labelled "a reformar", meaning "to renovate". In the current market, buyers who are willing to purchase property that is not suitable for immediate move-in are few and far in between, which gives you another advantage over the seller and more bargaining power. Potential investors could consider the following: you may secure a property for a low price while the market permits it, but then take your
time with renovations or even merely wait for the prices to go up, as they inevitably will.
Regardless of the market situation, be it looking up or facing a downturn, a potential buyer of a Barcelona apartment should decide where in the city to purchase property, as apartments in different areas and neighbourhoods can serve different purposes. For example, owning property in Pedralbes is very prestigious, and the prices and the neighbours adjust accordingly. An apartment there could be ideal for living, but renting it out could prove difficult. On the other hand, the Gothic Quarter and Barceloneta are far from being luxurious, but are an ideal option for renting out to tourists, since the proximity to museums, monuments and the beach is very important to visitors of Barcelona. A good compromise could be found in Eixample, a big and respectable area to the north of the Old Town (Ciutat Vella). It is comfortable enough to settle there yourself and is convenient enough to rent an apartment out, either for short or long term.
Choosing the right area and the right apartment, negotiating the price, getting a quote for necessary renovations, finding out if the tourist rent license is obtainable - these questions and many more require the buyer to have a knowledgeable person by her side. This is why, if you are interested in buying property in Barcelona, we suggest you get in touch with our real estate agents working in the Catalan capital, either by phone or using our feedback form.