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Spain and Portugal - when to Go

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My husband and I are planning a trip Portugal and Spain next year - 2017.
We are planning to fly into Barcelona, and after visiting for 5 days, plan to hire a car to get around.

This year we were in Italy in august and it was so very busy. It seemed as if all of Italy was on holiday in Sorrento when we were there.
So now planning next year I am thinking September would be a better time. But looking at hotel prices, September seems to be even more expensive than august.
Have others found this to be true?

also I have been on Bookings.com and looked at some hotels in Portugal for September and some are coming up with 'with no availability', as the last room has been booked.
I know that we are talking 11 months away, but how far in advance should i be booking.
I had no trouble with booking for august 4 months earlier.

I am wondering if there is something about the month of September I do not know about.

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