PropertyCommunity.com has reported that Mediterranean countries are proving more popular among those searching for overseas property as the focus turns away from wintry destinations to summer dreams, according to the latest foreign real estate index.

PropertyCommunity.com reported that some 60% of locations saw an increase in searches, with Alentejo in Portugal the top climber in February going up 22 places with searches up by 27.3% in the Rightmove overseas monthly index.

Tuscany consolidates its place as the favourite Italian region with an increase of 12.5% in searches, the report also shows.

Emigration hotspots New Zealand, Australia, and Canada are biggest losers in the country chart, down an average of 17% on January as the peak emigration season starts to tail away and those simply dreaming of emigration, rather than actively investigating it, loses impetus.

Oceania’s loss was the Mediterranean’s gain though, with good lifts in search activity for Greece, up 8.2%, Malta up 11.3%, Spain up 2.5% and Italy up 0.9%.

But Germany’s recent climb has halted with Berlin the biggest faller, down 44.6% on January. But the gains made through summer 2009 look like being permanent and it may only be a matter of time before Germany joins the Top 10, according to the report.

‘After adjusting for this being the shortest month, February actually saw an increase on January searches, in stark contrast to last year’s drop off after the January peak. Year on Year February searches are up 54% on 2009 which is really encouraging for the market,’ said Robin Wilson, head of overseas at Rightmove.

‘We’re also starting to see signs of increased confidence from advertisers. This month, the number of new advertisers choosing longer contract periods doubled on January’s new joiners, indicating an much improved long term outlook on the state of the market,’ he added.

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