The latest Las Palmas & Gran Canaria property news including price updates and special offers.

Las Palmas City’s Quality Of Life Amongst World’s Best

Las Palmas de Gran Canaria city offers world-leading Quality of Life

Las Palmas de Gran Canaria city offers world-leading Quality of Life

Las Palmas has one of the highest Quality of Life scores of any city in the world, according to website Numbeo.com

Numbeo uses a wide range of factors to calculate its quality of life index, including…

Purchasing Power
Safety
Health Care
Climate
Cost of Living
Property Price to Income Ratio
Traffic Commute Time
Pollution Index

Overall, Las Palmas scores a Very High 187.45, putting it in the top 5% of cities around the world. It scores particularly high on factors such as low commute time, healthcare, low pollution, safety and, of course, climate.

Given that Las Palmas has the cleanest air of any city in Spain, the most pleasant urban climate in the world, and one of the world’s best city beaches, the high Quality of Life score isn’t surprising.

However, the fact that it ranks so close to the top of the list worldwide is still exciting news.

Las Palmas’ score compares favourably to other cities in the Canary Islands and Spain (165.67) on average.

Santa Cruz De Tenerife: 178.43

Malaga: 179.17

Valencia: 170.51

Madrid: 145.30

Barcelona: 128.61

In fact, the only major European cities with a higher Quality of Life score than Las Palmas de Gran Canaria is Eindhoven in the Netherlands. Edinburgh comes just behind Las Palmas with a score of 186.02.

Other cities around the world that outpoint Las Palmas are already famous as great places to live: Wellington in New Zealand and Canberra in Australia.

If you want to live in a city rated as one of the best places to be in the world, you know who to call.

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Las Palmas Wins Path Award To Go With Blue Flag Las Canteras Beach

 

Las Canteras keeps Blue Flag beach and gains Blue Flag path

Las Canteras keeps Blue Flag beach and gains Blue Flag path

Las Canteras has long been a prestigious Blue Flag beach thanks to its clean water, easy access, facilities and Las Palmas’ commitment to preserving the marine environment (the whole beach area is a reserve).

Now, the 6KM+ walkway that runs from El Confital beach north of Las Palmas, all the way along the Las Canteras promenade and out past Las Arenas to the Mirador del Atlante sculpture has received a new award as a Blue Flag Path.

Blue Path awards only go to walking routes between Blue Flag beaches that contribute to the sustainable use of the beaches and surrounding area.

The entire walk takes a couple of hours and, this being Las Palmas, there are plenty of places on route to stop for a coffee or a cold beer. 

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Supreme Court Ruling Legalises Bed and Breakfasts In Las Palmas

Supreme Court removes ban on B&B and room rentals in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria city

Supreme Court removes ban on B&B and room rentals in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria city

A Canarian Supreme Court ruling issued today (26/04/2017) has removed the restriction on renting a room in your property to tourists and opens the door to bed and breakfast-style rentals in Las Palmas. [Read more…]

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Las Palmas Building Sector Bounces Back Despite License Delays

The Las Palmas building sector is waking up and license applications are growing fast

The Las Palmas building sector is waking up and license applications are growing fast

Las Palmas de Gran Canaria city expects to make over five million euros this year from new build licenses, property renovations, and other building project fees.

The city budget predicts building license income of 5.14 million in 2017. This will be first time since the beginning of the crisis in 2008 that fees will be over the five million threshold and it’s a 139% increase on the 2016 figure.

The spike in building license applications in Las Palmas is already causing problems; the Town Hall dealing has a large backlog of applications and builders and homeowners currently face delays of up to a year for large projects.

The Urbanismo department of the Town Hall has already stated that it is working to solve the problem which is caused by low staffing levels after years of minimal building activity in Las Palmas. It is looking at employing new staff or signing a deal to get staff from the Gran Canaria Government (Cabildo).

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Canary Islands Real Estate Industry 56% Smaller Than In 2006 (& Why That’s A Good Thing)

The healthy recovery of the Las palmas de Gran Canaria property market in 2017

Las Palmas property figures and market

The latest Spanish Ministry of Development figures show that the Canary Islands real estate sector turns over just 44% of what it did in 2006 just before the global subprime crash.

The industry turned over 2600 million euros in 2016 compared to 6.100 million euros in 2006; a drop of  56%.

While this sounds like a serious problem it really isn’t.

The Canary Islands real estate market (along with the rest of the Spanish sector) was in a huge bubble back in 2006 and dropped sharply once the crisis took hold.

For example, in 2011, the sector turned over just 1.717 million euros. In contrast, last year’s figure was the highest since 2008.

After a decade of correction, prices are now back at reasonable levels and the market is looking healthy.

The figures point to a gradual and (most importantly) controlled increase in real estate activity; a healthy rather than a heady rise.

See the figures here in La Provincia newspaper here (PDF). 

In support of this assessment, the general secretary of the Santa Cruz de Tenerife’s Federación Provincial de Entidades de la Construcción (Fepeco; the Tenerife construction industry body), Isidro Martín, has recently stated that he expects 2017 to be a transition year before a healthy recovery in 2018. He expects the real estate market in the Canary islands to rise by 20-30% over the medium term (referring to turnover rather than property prices).

To back up his assessment, we have figures from BBVA Research, (the research department of BBVA bank) which found that the number of real estate transactions in 2016 rose by 12.1% across the Canary Islands (the average across Spain was 13.9%).

BBVA Research also reported that the affordability-to-risk ratio for Spanish families is currently 30% above the long-term average meaning that they are currently well-placed to buy property. This is mainly due to lower prices and low interest rates.

BBVA Research did warn that the number of sales to foreign nationals is significant in the Canary Islands and that Brexit could weigh on the market in areas of high foreign demand (especially due to the fall in the value of the pound against the euro).

The Las Palmas property market

How does this all affect the Las Palmas property market?

Las Palmas is a busy city and there is plenty of pent-up demand from locals who are looking to upsize after years of recession and strict mortgage conditions from local banks. Tourism in Gran Canaria is at record levels and local employment is growing.

All in all, it looks like a positive year for property in Gran Canaria and Las Palmas; residential rental rates in Las Palmas are increasing, the banks are being more reasonable, and the tourist rental market is also pushing up demand for investment properties in high-demand areas of the city such as Las Canteras beach and the Puerto District.

I’d expect the number of transactions to rise this year and prices to remain level or increase slightly all over Las Palmas in 2017/2018 (barring any outside economic shock). The high-demand areas in the Puerto and around the beach, where prices are already rising, will lead the way.

As evidence for rising prices in Las Palmas, the Spanish property portal Idealista produces a detailed breakdown of the prices of second-hand property across Spain. The latest report, including figures for Q1, 2017, shows that while property prices in the Province of Las Palmas (including Gran Canaria, Lanzarote & Fuerteventura) are flat, they rose  in Las Palmas city by 0.5% in the past 12 months and were up 2.1% year-on-year in Q1 2017 (see page 15 and image below).

Las Palmas property price rise chart for 2016

Idealista also tracks monthly price fluctuations in Las Palmas.

As for Brexit, while non-residents are a significant minority of buyers in Las Palmas, the high demand from locals and other nationalities is likely to mitigate any drop in demand caused by Brexit worries and the weaker pound.

Further Reading

Getting a Las Palmas Mortgage in 2017

How to buy a Las Palmas property in 2017

Guide to the taxes and fees involved in buying a Las Palmas Property

I’m Laura Leyshon and I’m Las Palmas’ resident British estate agent. I specialise in helping foreign buyers and sellers in the city and I’m always available if you have any questions about property in Las Palmas and the surrounding areas.

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NEWS: Roof Gardens Now Legal In Las Palmas De Gran Canaria

Las Palmas' roof terraces can now be turned into rooftop gardens and allotments.

Las Palmas rooftop gardens legalized

The latest building regulations for Las Palmas city now allow roof terraces, gardens, allotments, pergolas and even greenhouses.

Hotels and commercial areas will now also be allowed to open rooftop bars and restaurants although they won’t be allowed to play music and must close by 11pm.

The new Ordenanza Municipal de Edificación reverses a ban on using the roof spaces of new Las Palmas buildings brought in after rampant illegal building during the 1970s and 80s.

Now that planning laws are clear and people are used to obeying them, the city’s roof spaces have been opened up again.

The new law forbids covering up terrace areas on buildings put up since December 26, 2000 but allows the communidad to cover 50% of the terraces of buildings put up prior to this date. In older buildings up to 50% of the communal roof space can be covered provided that the work is carried out with a license, the covered area is roofed over and has at least 50% of its walls as windows.

In these older buildings (the vast majority of the city’s apartment blocks are pre-2000) up to 50% of the communal roof space can be covered provided that the work is carried out with a license, the covered area is roofed over and has at least 50% of its walls as windows.

Properties in the protected parts of Vegueta, Triana and Tafira cannot alter their roof areas and it is now forbidden to cover over a terrace on the Las Canteras beachfront.

The new rules even state that all new buildings over 1000m² must have a roof garden.

Roof gardens and allotments must be made of temporary materials, are not allowed to add to the height of the building and farm animals are banned.

The members of the communidad are also not allowed to subdivide the roof space into private areas. Shade structures such as pergolas, and even potted trees, are fine provided that they don’t cover more than 10% of the roof area and are set three metres back from the facade.

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Huge New Las Palmas Building Planned

Location map of the huge new building project in Guanarteme, Las Palma

Location map of the huge new building project in Guanarteme, Las Palmas

The Guanarteme district of Las Palmas is about to get 300 new apartments if a new build project comes to fruition.

A 20-strong investment consortium that includes Satocan (owners of the Gran Canaria Sheraton) and the Dinosol supermarket group plans to resurrect a 300-property building project from the pre-crisis days.

The group now owns the 8000m² build site (the guide price was €30m) that was originally acquired and cleared by the now-defunct Spanish company Martinsa-Fadesa. It planned to put up a huge 13-storey building called the Gran Guanarteme but went bankrupt before building started.

The plot in question is at the western end of Mesa y Lopez street and is bordered by Mario César, Fernando Guanarteme and the Plaza de América.

The site already has permission for up to four buildings that can be 10, nine and seven storeys high although there are no public plans for what the new investors plan to build.

We do know that the consortium plans to start work before the end of 2017.

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The Las Palmas Property Market: 2017 Report

The Las Palmas property market in 2017: Property price and rental yield predictions from local estate agent Laura Leyshon

What awaits the Las Palmas property market in 2017?

With demand, residential rents and rental yield all rising, I predict a busy year for the Las Palmas property market in 2017. [Read more…]

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Giant Bendy Buses To Revolutionise Las Palmas Transport

The Las Palmas MetroGuagua will be running by 2021

The Las Palmas MetroGuagua will be running by 2021

Soon, you’ll be able to whizz the length of Las Palmas on a fast, bendy bus.

Las Palmas’ revolutionary new BRT bus system will be called MetroGuagua. It will use buses with capacity for 200 people that run in their own lane, have priority at traffic lights, and come at five-minute intervals.

The new buses will go between Hoya de la Plata (by the Carrefour in the south of the city) all the way north to Manuel Becerra in La Isleta.

Work on the route is expected to take five years in total and will happen in stages to minimise disruption.

The first phase, including work at Hoya de la Plata, Pío XII and Rafael Cabrera, is due to start in March 2016, take a year to complete and cost 6.5 million euros.  The total budget for the MetroGuagua route is 100 million euros, of which 50 million is already in place thanks to the European Investment Bank.

The most expensive section will be the Vegueta bit because it requires tunnelling and reclaiming new land from the sea.

The MetroGuagua vehicles will be electric or hybrid and the local Guaguas Municipales bus company plans to buy 17 of them between 2019 and 2021.

Interestingly, the MetroGuagua route is identical to the route that was originally mapped out for the Gran Canaria train tracks. If the train ever happens, it looks like it won’t be coming into the city.

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Las Palmas Plans To Ban Cars From The Garden City

Las Palmas de Gran Canaria plans to ban cars from the Garden City

Ciudad Jardín pedestrianisation plan

Las Palmas has big plans for Ciudad Jardin or the Garden City. It wants the area to become a tourist attraction that gives people something to look at between the beach and port districts, and old town Vegueta and Triana. [Read more…]

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