Property in Spain attracting British Banks

British Banks Barclays and Natwest are both getting to grips with the ever increasing overseas property industry.  Barclays today launched a new service designed to help those planning to buy property overseas. The Web site and telephone service was unveiled at the “A Place in the Sun Live” overseas property exhibition at the NEC in Birmingham.
Suzanne Clay, European business development manager at Barclays, which has almost 650 branches in Italy, France, Spain and Portugal, said: “Buying a home is one of the most stressful experiences we face — even in one’s home country. The service also offers guidance on a range of non-financial considerations, such as selecting schools, where to go for medical advice and the language, food and culture of the chosen destination.
Natwest International has also been shaping up to the challenges of an expanding overseas property industry. The Bank conducted extensive research concerning the future of the overseas property industry. The report reveals that a substantial numbers of Brits could opt for the expat lifestyle. Figures released indicate that one in three current and potential overseas homeowners want to retire elsewhere. Meanwhile, almost three-quarters of 30 to 50-year-old current and potential overseas homeowners said they would consider leaving the country permanently. The study which was commissioned by the personal banking arm of Natwest International polled more than 2,600 UK adults, of whom one in eight said they did not enjoy the UK lifestyle.
Mike Freer, head of business development at Natwest International, said: ‘It’s evident from our research that many Brits intend to escape the hectic British lifestyle to enjoy a more relaxed standard of living overseas.
Many established home owners are gaining every month on their UK home and it is clear that this equity will be used buy a home overseas. House prices in UK continued to climb despite increases in the interest rates by the Bank of England last month. House prices in September showed an increase of 1.3 percent, according to the latest survey by the Nationwide Building Society. The average price of a house in the UK is now at £169,413, over £13,000 more than the price during the same time last year. This month’s “unseasonably strong” performance has lifted the annual rate of growth to 8.2 percent, making it the fastest annual growth rate since February 2005.
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