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Startup purchases first flat in Spain entirely through crowdfunding

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Startup purchases first flat in Spain entirely through crowdfunding
Photo: Google Maps screengrab of apartment.
14:58 CEST+02:00
A startup that helps investors finance flats throughout Spain entirely through crowdfunding has acquired its first apartment - the first purchase of its kind in the country.

The website Housers.es connects real estate investors and developers in order to finance housing projects entirely through crowdfunding - raising funds through many small amounts of money from lots of different people.

Its first successful purchase involves 49 investors, according to news agency EFE, who together now own a 46 square-metre, two-bedroom flat in the Vallecas neighbourhood of Madrid.

Together the investors bought the apartment for €62,000 ( $70,000) - 21 percent less than the average market price in the area, Housers announced this week. They will spend in total €80,500 for additional costs renovating and paying taxes on the flat.

But the 49 crowdfunders are not planning on staying in the two-bedroom themselves. They will be renting the apartment for €450 per month and will split the returns based on how much they each invested.

Housers estimates that the apartment will yield a 67.8 percent total gross return over five years, or €33,123.

The housing crowdfunding platform has a number of other projects it is trying to find backers for, mainly in Madrid, but also in the Catalan coastal town of Sant Antoni de Calonge as well as Valencia.

"Housers enables anyone to invest in the real estate sector through a platform that is simple and straightforward," according the website.

The minimum investment is €100 per project, though bigger projects ask for a higher amount. And investors can come from almost all over the world, including the US and the UK, though countries deemed high risk for investments are not allowed, such as Iran, Syria and North Korea.

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