The number of Brits looking for a second home in Spain spiked in the first week of January as more families targeted the European country amid the lockdown, property experts said.
Real estate firm Taylor Wimpey Espana noted that interest in Spanish property rose 39 percent in the first week of 2021 compared to the first week of the previous year despite post-Brexit travel restrictions.
They also reported an increase in potential buyers in the UK using their virtual tours to see dream properties in areas such as Alicante, Mallora and Costa Blanca.
It comes after travel restrictions, which went into effect Jan. 1, stated that would be British prevented from spending more than three months at a time in a holiday home in the EU after Brexit.
Due to the restrictions, the British are allowed to stay in a European country for a maximum of 90 days without a visa every six months.
A three bedroom apartment in Mallorca, Spain, with three bathrooms, a fitted kitchen and a laundry room, is for sale by Taylor Wimpey Espana for £ 426,838.99
The luxury property also has a spacious dining and living area as well as a private parking space
People who exceed the 90-day limit could face a fine or even prohibit entry into the EU's Schengen travel zone.
Despite the additional hurdles after Brexit, Taylor Wimpey Espana also reported that interest from other European countries was also growing. The visitors from Germany rose by 51 percent and those from Belgium by 44 percent.
Domestic visitors have also increased. Website visits from Spain increased by 15 percent compared to the previous year.
Marc Pritchard, Taylor Wimpey Espana Sales and Marketing Director, said: & # 39; Unfortunately, both the UK and Germany are currently at a standstill, while there are significant restrictions in Spain, France and a whole host of other countries.
“But that doesn't mean that potential buyers don't dream of owning a house in the sunshine. The attractiveness of the Spanish golf courses and extensive beaches is only emphasized by ordering at home.
"Families itch to get back to normal with a newfound zeal for travel and leisure."
Properties currently available at Taylor Wimpey include a private three bedroom gated community in Alicante currently priced at £ 169,846.35 (EUR 191,000).
The property has a fully equipped kitchen, garden, private parking space and gas central heating and is just a stone's throw from the Alenda Golf Cours
Also for sale are new La Recoleta apartments in Punta Prima, Torrevieja, starting at £ 160,064.62 (EUR 180,000), and three-bedroom apartments in Mallorca, priced at around £ 426,838.99 (EUR 480,000) .
These La Recoleta apartments in Punta Prima, Torrevieja are located near the beach and have sea access. The price is currently £ 160,064.62
The property has two or three bedrooms, a spacious living room and a private terrace
Also on offer is a three bedroom private gated community in Alicante currently priced at £ 169,846.35
The apartment has a fully equipped kitchen, air conditioning and a spacious living room
The company said both mainland Spain and Mallorca are the most popular places to shop.
The mix of affordability and sunshine that the Costa Blanca offers has long been popular with British buyers.
Mr Pritchard said: “We are pleased that interest in Spanish second homes has increased significantly over the past year despite the many challenges the pandemic has brought with it.
"The opportunity to travel freely and enjoy unrestricted second home ownership will feel so incredibly welcome after the events of 2020."
There are an estimated 500,000 British people currently owning a vacation home somewhere in Europe.
If you want to stay in an EU country for more than three months, you will probably have to apply for a visa.
Activists are calling for a change in the rules so that users can continue to use their 90-day assignments.
This would allow them to spend six months in a row in their vacation home so they can take full advantage of the spring and summer months.
In November, David Young, who had started a 180-day campaign group in Greece to combat the new rules, told The Telegraph: "Like me, many Britons split their lives between two countries, but after Brexit – unless they request a full stay in the EU country where they bought their property, paid taxes there and lost their NHS care at home – second home owners are limited to stays of a maximum of 90 days. & # 39;
He added: “Citizens from the EU, EEA and Switzerland who wish to stay in the UK for up to six months will not need a visa after Brexit. We only ask for parity. & # 39;
Which new EU travel rules will apply from January 1st?
The UK's decision to leave the EU means that British people traveling in Europe will no longer be allowed to move freely.
The UK and the bloc are currently in a transitional period of standstill that will end next month.
The travel rules will then change from January 1st as both sides start their lives after Brexit and the UK will be treated like any other “third country”.
From the beginning of 2021, British tourists will be allowed to spend between six and three months in European countries.
Anyone wishing to stay longer than 90 days every 180 days must apply for a visa, work permit or permanent residence.
The rules mean that someone who stays in a country for three consecutive months cannot return to that country for another three months.
Anyone who violates the rules can face fines or a ban on entry into the Schengen area of the EU.
The travel rules are ultimately a matter for every European nation.
For example, if someone wants to stay in France for more than 90 days after Brexit, they will likely need to apply for what is known as a long stay visa.
These visas can be valid for between three months and one year and the application for a visa costs 99 euros.
Applications must be submitted to the French embassy, with applicants often being invited for a face-to-face interview.
In Spain there is a similar system where the registration fee is 80 euros.
(tagsToTranslate) Dailymail (t) Nachrichten (t) Coronavirus Lockdowns (t) Spain