UK buyers don’t want holiday homes in France or Spain any more, choosing Wales & Scotland instead says new research
British buyers’ interest in overseas property and holiday homes in Europe has plummeted this year, according to data unveiled today.
Online search volumes for ‘chateau for sale’ (down 34% compared to 2020) and ‘property for sale in France’ (down 26%) suggest the combination of Covid and Brexit has left many UK residents wary of buying real estate in the traditionally popular sunnier climes.
It’s not just France, either: searches are also massively down for ‘property for sale in Spain’ (down 26%), ‘apartments in Benidorm’ (down 36%) and ‘property in Spain’ (down 20%).
The analysis was carried out by online search expert MediaVision, using its proprietary Digital Demand Tracker tool - https://www.wearemediavision.com/digital-demand-tracker - that analyses search data from AdWords and Google Trends. It compared search behaviours and terms for Jan-November 2021 with the same period in 2020.
However, the data also suggests that interest in homes in the UK, particularly Wales and Scotland, both as a main residence and a holiday home is increasing among a population more focused than ever on ‘staycations’ or on moving into the country and away from big cities.
It found that online searches are on the rise for ‘houses for sale Llanelli’ (up 79%), ‘houses for sale Dunfermline’ (up 75%), ‘houses for sale West Lothian’ (up 37%) and ‘farm for sale Scotland’ (up by 45% compared to 2020).
Louis Venter, CEO at MediaVision, comments: “Online search behaviour is a key indicator of what people are thinking and feeling, especially for something as major as a house purchase. The data suggests that Covid and Brexit are putting a lot of people off buying property in France and Spain, even though these have both historically been very popular markets for UK buyers.
“It also seems that places like Wales and Scotland could be taking up the slack. People looking for property are more likely to view the UK countryside as a very attractive alternative option, whether for holiday homes or among those people who are now able to work from home and therefore no longer need to live in a large city.”