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Foreign property buyers 'favouring established markets'

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Overseas property investors are continuing to look for opportunities in well-established markets, an expert has noted.

According to Liz Rowlinson, editor of A Place in the Sun Magazine, foreign property buyers had been particularly keen to look at emerging destinations circa five years ago.

Indeed, she noted that places such as eastern Europe, the Balkans and untapped countries in other continents were highly popular during this period.

However, Ms Rowlinson said that since the onset of the global financial crisis, overseas property buyers have sought to reduce the risk attached to foreign investments.

This, she stated, means they are largely sticking to tried and trusted countries closer to home.

"People aren't being attracted to the next hot new emerging place," Ms Rowlinson observed.

"They are steering very clear of those and are looking at the solid, established well-tested markets like Spain, France and Italy."

Ms Rowlinson noted that the financial climate is very different today to how it was five years ago, hence the change in people's investment preferences over this period.

This backs up recent observations from Rightmove Overseas, which identified Spain as the most popular market among foreign property buyers in the UK.

Figures showed that homes in Benidorm in particular have been highly sought-after over the last month, while there has also been strong interest in Villamartin and Torrevieja.

Shameem Golamy, head of Rightmove Overseas, said this is because people from the UK are keen to snap up properties in places where they like to take holidays.

"Other European destinations, Brittany, Sicily and the Italian Lakes have also seen increased levels of property interest," he commented.

Foreign exchange specialist HiFX has also noted strong interest in traditional European destinations among overseas property buyers in the UK. The organisation put this partly down to the fact that economic problems in places such as Spain have driven down house prices across the country.

As a result, British foreign property buyers have been able to snap up residences in highly desirable areas at knock-down prices.

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