Pretty island loved by tourists where locals need 17 years to save up for house

Just two and a half hours away from the UK, the Balearic Islands are home to the most incredible sandy beaches and crystal-clear waters, welcoming hundreds of thousands of sun-searching Brits every year.

One of the most popular islands is of course Ibiza, which seems to have it all: idyllic natural scenery, bustling historic and modern towns – a party capital of Europe.

To an outsiders view, the Ibizans who get to live there all year seem very lucky – but it turns out they’re not quite as lucky as we might think.

That’s because it’s recently been revealed that it would take the average Balearic Island resident close to 17 years of their entire salary to buy a €280,000 (£240,000) property – and the situation is “much more dramatic” for Ibizans.

The concerning news comes amid reports of a swathe of eerie “ghost villages” popping up across the islands, according to Balearic officials.

READ MORE: Giant jellyfish weighing a huge 40 kilos seen swimming near Ibiza beach

The Balearics (the archipelago off the east of Spain including Menorca, Mallorca, Ibiza etc.) are suffering a serious shortage of housing.

“There is no escape route for more vulnerable groups such as young people or for any average income”, warns María Matos, Director of Studies at Spanish estate agency Fotocasa.

“Mallorca is up almost 16 per cent and Menorca is up 14 per cent [compared to last year’s house prices]. Despite this, there is more pressure on the price in Ibiza. There is a difference of about €2,000 from one island to another.”

She described the situation as “barbaric”.

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“Not only have we reached the figures we had during the 2007 property bubble, but we have exceeded them”.

The worrying figures have been revealed months after a Guardian report that Balearic officials want to ban the purchase of holiday homes which create “ghost villages”.

It said that in the village of Deia in Mallorca, 200 out of 700 properties lay empty for most of the year, and 23 per cent of all the village’s properties were owned by Brits.

“Many European and other citizens can afford property at prices that are impossible for the citizens of these islands,” complained Balearic president, Francina Armengol.

In Ibiza, fewer than 12 properties could be found on the whole island for under €280,000.

Ibiza is the island with “the greatest tension” according to Matos, with prices reaching €20.51/m2, compared to the Balearic average of €15.03/m2.

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She went on: “It is where there is a more savage rise because it is 29 per cent in a single year. It is an absolute barbarity and gives a glimpse of the huge gap between supply and demand.

“The latter has grown very quickly after the pandemic and the market has not had time to absorb it. Therefore, as supply has contracted over the last year, there has been such a significant rise of almost 30 per cent.”

Ibiza is one of the party capitals of the world and the raucous O Beach Club, owned by Gary Lineker’s brother Wayne and scene of Jack Grealish’s Premier League-winning celebrations, is up there with the most famous.

It competes with another well-known institution, the Ibiza Rocks Hotel. Boat tours and watersports are a common sight in the sunny paradise.

If you’re interested in visiting but aren’t fussed about the parties, Ibiza is still a great pick. The Hotel Vibra Algarb is held in high regard, as is the Amare Beach Hotel, according to reviewers on TripAdvisor.

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