Italian property portal Gate-Away has reported a massive 87.5% increase in search enquiries from British investors in the first quarter of 2015, compared with the same period last year.
Sterling strength against the euro has led to a significant upward shift in sentiment from British buyers since the beginning of the year. Interest was further buoyed when changes to UK pension regulations took effect in April, resulting in more than 200,000 new buyers entering real estate markets both at home and overseas.
Gate-Away also revealed that Brits are looking at more expensive property in Italy’s prime regions with budgets of an average €324,000 compared to €190,000 in the first three months of 2014. This is partially due to increased purchasing power resulting from sterling strength in euro denominated property markets.
Simone Rossi, commercial director of Gate-Away said: “The average value of Italian properties sought by the British has grown tremendously in this first quarter and even beyond the depreciation of the euro against the pound. More and more Brits than ever are being driven by the favourable economic climate and are finding that the Italian real estate market is far from inaccessible and beginning to consider the idea of buying a house in Italy very seriously“.
Topping the list of most favourable buying locations was Puglia, knocking Tuscany off the top spot. 80% of searches by British visitors to the portal have shown interest in houses and 20% in apartments, with around 55.7% looking for habitable properties not requiring renovation.
Gate-Away shows that the UK generates the highest number of enquiries for property in Italy, followed by the Americans at 14.2% and French (9.3%). Interest from American buyers in Italian property markets is also expected to increase considerably in 2015 on the back of a rock solid dollar.
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