Before Spain was unified Catalonia had been an independent region with its own laws and traditions. Nowadays considered as one of the country’s most affluent regions and the Spanish economic driving force, Catalonia is once again seeking autonomy and on 1st October 2017 voted to become an independent state.
This month’s events are not the first of their kind. On the contrary, in November of 2014, an unofficial poll was conducted in which 80% of voters opted for independence. Whilst only 40% of Catalonians cast their vote, this self-determination referendum has become symbolic, and allowed for regional pride to continue throughout the decade. Three years on, with the debate once again up for vote, thousands of people are taking to the streets. Such frequent demonstrations, whilst demonstrative of the region’s enthusiasm for independence, are a cause for concern for a number of reasons, with Katherine Brooks, a research director at City Index, even going so far as to suggest that the euro could decline by as much as 5%. 1
On a local level, whilst the future of Barcelona’s real estate market could be under threat, here at Casamona we believe that it is still too early to pass judgement.
How will the real estate market be affected if Catalonia gains independence?
Some have suggested that Catalonian autonomy could be a cause for concern for the real estate market. Detachment from wider Spain would mean separation from the European Union and could potentially destabilise the economy.
This we believe to be too narrow an overview of the current situation, however. Catalonia becoming an independent state would by no means damage the cultural, historical and social interest that the region has generated for centuries, and we have great faith in the continuation in the popularity of the area.
In addition, a potential drop in property prices could provide buyers with the ideal opportunity to invest.
Will Catalonia gain independence?
Catalonia’s future is impossible to predict. Will the region detach itself from wider Spain or not? Here at Casamona we doubt that so great a change will take place in the immediate future. Indeed, as Artur Mas, the region’s former president himself declared, Catalonia is by no means ready to become autonomous, requiring a number of preparations before breaking away.
This is not to say that Catalonia will never become independent. Their relationship with Spain has never been entirely harmonious, with the events of this October alongside 2014’s unofficial vote for independence serving as just two examples of their lengthy struggle.
Nevertheless, Casamona believes that Barcelona, with its history, culture and vibrant atmosphere, still has a great deal to offer to future buyers, and that we must not rush to any conclusions.