Spain

Oh No, an extra hour to endure

Daylight Saving Time dictated that we gained an hour last night. So we both slept in an hour later than usual to compensate. Well it’s better than being awake and waiting even longer for another day to pass. Especially when it’s a Sunday and nothing’s open for business except the likes of Tesco. Which, as recently stated has already been abandoned by us. Along with many other Brits who’re actually intending living here till the coffin arrives on the doorstep, minus the Tesco life insurance…

On a different note: It’s good to see that all the banks in Spain passed the “European Banking Authority Stress Test.” Looks like avoiding a second bailout last year has paid off, we hoped it might. In 2012 the economy grew for the first time since 2008.

Now, towards the end of 2014 it’s recovering faster than both France and Germany. Mostly driven by greater exports, being granted longer to pay off debt to the EU, and a turnaround in the car industry. All happening when one in four people of working age are out of work… 

To add to the still tentative yet positive outlook, the housing market is recovering. Demand for newly built property is currently exceeding supply. Contractors that “went under” are back in business and employing people again. We’ve seen this happening with our own eyes.

In 2013 they were building luxury houses between the much talked about shopping mall and the sea, that in itself was a sight to behold. When we went back in August they were finishing off phase two. The first phase was already snapped up. Every one of them sold, many in advance of completion.

Please don’t imagine Benidorm! In our area and for miles up and down the coast, no house is allowed to be built more than three storeys high. Which means views remain unspoiled.

Early this year we noticed two separate areas of land where building work had started and stopped. Half built and abandoned it was sad to see. Six months later it was amazing to us that cranes had suddenly appeared and were swinging round again on both sites. In fact the demand from investors is so high, builders are still working at 7pm!! Hey this is Spain, building sites aren’t active till that time of night right? Well yes they are…

In December last year I did a blog post called Who says Spain is bust? At the time we had no idea we were witnessing the beginnings of a country wide improvement…

Also, according to recent facts and figures, it appears that growth in the housing market hasn’t been fully taken into account yet…       

Considering the black hole Spain has risen from, it’s astonishing. Down there they were, just above Greece and Italy when the banking crisis hit hard. Yet they’ve turned it round good style, whilst the others are still languishing in a pit with banks failing the test.

There’s a long way to go, and just like everywhere else, the average Joe hasn’t felt any improvement yet. No denying it’ll be a hard slog over many years, but the building blocks are literally starting to appear.

Let’s hope the rest of the EU wakes up to resourceful thinking…

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