BEWARE! Is the Bullshit Coming back to Spanish Property?

LoadingFavourite

This topic contains 32 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of angie angie 4 years, 10 months ago.

  • Author
    Posts
  • #56496
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Or has it ever left?

    Received an email from PropertyIndex.com based in Rickmansworth Herts UK.

    107% Financed Beach Resort Spain, ONLY 3,950 euros needed, yeah right!
    Prices reduced by 60% (don’t believe it, think of a bigger figure then reduce it by 60%) to CLEAR STOCK they say, starting at 129.5k euros
    VIRTUALLY Zero Money in Now get this bit, ‘PRE-APPROVED MORTGAGES’ must be a lending scam again methinks. How can this be with all the Sub Prime and Credit Fuelled Lenders? Ok then I’ll take a dozen of those mortgages thanks!!!!
    FREE Inspection Trips – now where have we heard that before? Nothing’s free in overseas property.

    Somewhere near Murcia and Alicante they say.

    Why aren’t these agents regulated, is it because they’re based in UK?

    Anyone know more about this and them? ❓

  • #107648
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    @angie wrote:

    Or has it ever left?

    Received an email from PropertyIndex.com based in Rickmansworth Herts UK.

    107% Financed Beach Resort Spain, ONLY 3,950 euros needed, yeah right!
    Prices reduced by 60% (don’t believe it, think of a bigger figure then reduce it by 60%) to CLEAR STOCK they say, starting at 129.5k euros
    VIRTUALLY Zero Money in Now get this bit, ‘PRE-APPROVED MORTGAGES’ must be a lending scam again methinks. How can this be with all the Sub Prime and Credit Fuelled Lenders? Ok then I’ll take a dozen of those mortgages thanks!!!!
    FREE Inspection Trips – now where have we heard that before? Nothing’s free in overseas property.

    Somewhere near Murcia and Alicante they say.

    Why aren’t these agents regulated, is it because they’re based in UK?

    Anyone know more about this and them? ❓

    When you say “PropertyIndex.com based in Rickmansworth Herts UK” do you mean the offices are based there, or just the web hosting? It doesn’t really matter where the web hosting is based (a lot is based in the US) and even if the owner has a UK office, it doesn’t mean he can’t be located and working out in Spain!
    To be honest I won’t be using these type of operations – regardless of where they have their main office. What’s wrong with using fotocasa/Kyero or even a bit of footwork on the ground. As you mention. the worst thing to do is to take a “free inspection” holiday – who needs all that hard sell?
    I don’t think the market is there for them now – people who’ve made a tidy sum by selling off their right-to-buy council house are no longer around.

  • #107651
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    I don’t know if they are based there or there web hosting, that’s what was given on their website.

    However, does anyone here know anything about them or this advertised development in Spain, or how they can advertise ‘Pre-Approved Mortgages’ something doesn’t seem right about this? 🙄

  • #107654
    Profile photo of Fuengi (Andrew)
    Fuengi (Andrew)
    Participant

    @angie wrote:

    Or has it ever left?

    Received an email from PropertyIndex.com based in Rickmansworth Herts UK.

    107% Financed Beach Resort Spain, ONLY 3,950 euros needed, yeah right!
    Prices reduced by 60% (don’t believe it, think of a bigger figure then reduce it by 60%) to CLEAR STOCK they say, starting at 129.5k euros
    VIRTUALLY Zero Money in Now get this bit, ‘PRE-APPROVED MORTGAGES’ must be a lending scam again methinks. How can this be with all the Sub Prime and Credit Fuelled Lenders? Ok then I’ll take a dozen of those mortgages thanks!!!!
    FREE Inspection Trips – now where have we heard that before? Nothing’s free in overseas property.

    Somewhere near Murcia and Alicante they say.

    Why aren’t these agents regulated, is it because they’re based in UK?

    Anyone know more about this and them? ❓

    I don’t know about them, but there are I can think of a few developments on the Costa del Sol that are offering 100% financing, and depending on the buyer (residency status, income, etc..) offered 100% plus purchase costs.

    If legit, they should be able to supply developer details, bank details, etc…
    But if (yes big if) true, then some of these properties were previously on for 323.500€ and are now available for 129.500€.
    Maybe the bank was a creditor and has taken over the asset. If so they would only be interested in clearing the debt?

  • #107655
    Profile photo of Fuengi (Andrew)
    Fuengi (Andrew)
    Participant

    @angie wrote:

    I don’t know if they are based there or there web hosting, that’s what was given on their website.

    However, does anyone here know anything about them or this advertised development in Spain, or how they can advertise ‘Pre-Approved Mortgages’ something doesn’t seem right about this? 🙄

    Oh definitely bullshit. Not saying you would not get approval Angie, but yes i owuld say they have spammed quite a few people with this email, all amazingly with pre-approval.

  • #107657
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Thanks Andrew, that’s what I like about you, honest answers, just wish there was a register in Spain of ‘honest agents’ 😉

    Yes, you are right again, it’s a blanket email no doubt, spamming people, not sure where they got our details from though ❓

  • #107664
    Profile photo of Fuengi (Andrew)
    Fuengi (Andrew)
    Participant

    @angie wrote:

    Yes, you are right again, it’s a blanket email no doubt, spamming people, not sure where they got our details from though ❓

    Not counting the many ‘tricks’ there are to harvest contact details. You would be amazed (probably not) how many ex-agencies/webmasters seem willing to sell on ‘private’ contact details. Well at least a few years ago.

  • #107694
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    Speaking of bullshit – over a month ago some friends of mine had an offer for about €185k accepted on a flat in Madrid and put down a deposit. Last week the agent came back and said the sellers no longer accepted their offer (some bullshit about having received a higher offer). So my friends said ok and asked for their deposit back. The agent then said that it doesn’t work like that, and they have to make a higher counter offer! Of course my friends told them where to shove it and have asked for the deposit back (again). The flat in question is a very typical 50s identikit Madrid flat – there are hundreds of them on the market, all desperate to sell. I find this completely incredible. We have a market that has completely stalled and any offer within reason should be treated like gold dust. And yet this agent is behaving like it’s 2006 all over again!

  • #107711
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @chopera wrote:

    Speaking of bullshit – over a month ago some friends of mine had an offer for about €185k accepted on a flat in Madrid and put down a deposit. Last week the agent came back and said the sellers no longer accepted their offer (some bullshit about having received a higher offer). So my friends said ok and asked for their deposit back. The agent then said that it doesn’t work like that, and they have to make a higher counter offer! Of course my friends told them where to shove it and have asked for the deposit back (again). The flat in question is a very typical 50s identikit Madrid flat – there are hundreds of them on the market, all desperate to sell. I find this completely incredible. We have a market that has completely stalled and any offer within reason should be treated like gold dust. And yet this agent is behaving like it’s 2006 all over again!

    Must be illegal but I hope the agent doesn’t just take off with the money.

  • #107712
    Profile photo of Fuengi (Andrew)
    Fuengi (Andrew)
    Participant

    @chopera wrote:

    Speaking of bullshit – over a month ago some friends of mine had an offer for about €185k accepted on a flat in Madrid and put down a deposit. Last week the agent came back and said the sellers no longer accepted their offer (some bullshit about having received a higher offer). So my friends said ok and asked for their deposit back. The agent then said that it doesn’t work like that, and they have to make a higher counter offer! Of course my friends told them where to shove it and have asked for the deposit back (again). The flat in question is a very typical 50s identikit Madrid flat – there are hundreds of them on the market, all desperate to sell. I find this completely incredible. We have a market that has completely stalled and any offer within reason should be treated like gold dust. And yet this agent is behaving like it’s 2006 all over again!

    WHAT???
    If the vendors signed the reservation contract, then they cannot get out of it that easily. Clear terms should be stated what happens with the deposit.
    I would also suggest your friend does a Acta Notarial

  • #107715
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I have said this a 100 times to people and this forum… WHY PAY A DEPOSIT!!!

    To say it’s a buyers market is an understatement, what is the reason for a deposit… to secure the property… to prevent the vendor accepting a higher offer… to make sure the vendor doesn’t try to increase the price…. to prevent the vendor taking the property off the market and increasing the price after a few months as the market has moved higher??

    Someone please give a valid argument as to why a buyer should place a deposit, other than a nominal amount of say 500 Euros to indicate a true intention???

    Oh wait the vendor is not going to sell the property to you unless you make a deposit. Yeah right and then he/she waits another decade for a lone buyer to pass through.

  • #107716
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    @fuengi wrote:

    @chopera wrote:
    Speaking of bullshit – over a month ago some friends of mine had an offer for about €185k accepted on a flat in Madrid and put down a deposit. Last week the agent came back and said the sellers no longer accepted their offer (some bullshit about having received a higher offer). So my friends said ok and asked for their deposit back. The agent then said that it doesn’t work like that, and they have to make a higher counter offer! Of course my friends told them where to shove it and have asked for the deposit back (again). The flat in question is a very typical 50s identikit Madrid flat – there are hundreds of them on the market, all desperate to sell. I find this completely incredible. We have a market that has completely stalled and any offer within reason should be treated like gold dust. And yet this agent is behaving like it’s 2006 all over again!

    WHAT???
    If the vendors signed the reservation contract, then they cannot get out of it that easily. Clear terms should be stated what happens with the deposit.
    I would also suggest your friend does a Acta Notarial

    Have I been misinformed? – I was under the impression that once a deposit has been accepted, then the vendor has to re-imburse it double if they pull out of the deal (if for example they receive a higher offer). That is the reason why a higher deposit for the purchaser, the better.
    (If this is not right, please correct me)

  • #84737
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Very succinctly put JP, I couldn’t have said it better myself 😉

    Those days of ‘put your deposit down to take it (always the best plot they said) (all the Directors and staff are buying here too) off the market are well and truly gone, it’s a buyer’s market for the brave or foolish.

    500 euros to show good intention is maximum in these days, I’m sure many private vendors would even chance a ‘no deposit needed’ now, they’d be that desperate.

    It’s a sad state of affairs but Spain has only got itself to blame for their crisis fuelled by fraud and greed, not the World 🙄

  • #84813
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    Very succinctly put JP, I couldn’t have said it better myself 😉

    Those days of ‘put your deposit down to take it (always the best plot they said) (all the Directors and staff are buying here too) off the market are well and truly gone, it’s a buyer’s market for the brave or foolish.

    500 euros to show good intention is maximum in these days, I’m sure many private vendors would even chance a ‘no deposit needed’ now, they’d be that desperate.

    It’s a sad state of affairs but Spain has only got itself to blame for their crisis fuelled by fraud and greed, not the World 🙄

  • #107718
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    Ok my use of the word “deposit” might be misleading here – my friends are Spanish so they used the word “señal” which I suspect was just a few grand they gave the agent to keep it off the market (no laughing at the back). This is different to the deposit you pay the vendor when you sign the “contrato de arras” which, as DBMarcos says, is much more costly to pull out of. However I translated “señal” to English as “deposit” since I can’t think of a better word.

  • #107719
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @jp1 wrote:

    I have said this a 100 times to people and this forum… WHY PAY A DEPOSIT!!!

    To say it’s a buyers market is an understatement, what is the reason for a deposit… to secure the property… to prevent the vendor accepting a higher offer… to make sure the vendor doesn’t try to increase the price…. to prevent the vendor taking the property off the market and increasing the price after a few months as the market has moved higher??

    Someone please give a valid argument as to why a buyer should place a deposit, other than a nominal amount of say 500 Euros to indicate a true intention???

    Oh wait the vendor is not going to sell the property to you unless you make a deposit. Yeah right and then he/she waits another decade for a lone buyer to pass through.

    Quite agree. I’ll pass this on to my friends.

  • #107721
    Profile photo of DBMarcos99
    DBMarcos99
    Participant

    @chopera wrote:

    Ok my use of the word “deposit” might be misleading here – my friends are Spanish so they used the word “señal” which I suspect was just a few grand they gave the agent to keep it off the market (no laughing at the back). This is different to the deposit you pay the vendor when you sign the “contrato de arras” which, as DBMarcos says, is much more costly to pull out of. However I translated “señal” to English as “deposit” since I can’t think of a better word.

    Thanks for the clarification. As I was led to believe, it is actually better to put more money down for the deposit proper, as you are re-imbursed more if the vendor pulls out. But you have to be totally committed to buying…
    I suppose a better translation of “señal” would be “notice of intent”, although the direct translation “sign” is ok? I can see how a lesser amount is required in a sluggish market; more so when demand picks up/

  • #107723
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    I thought that deposit to estate agents was something only done by gullible Brits 😆 A marbella agent who I knew told me never to pay a holding deposit, contacting your Lawyer should be enough. The past few years buyers don’t even bother with the 10% deposit.

  • #107734
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @katy wrote:

    I thought that deposit to estate agents was something only done by gullible Brits 😆 A marbella agent who I knew told me never to pay a holding deposit, contacting your Lawyer should be enough. The past few years buyers don’t even bother with the 10% deposit.

    I thought it was the use of lawyers that is only done by gullible Brits 😆 As jp1 wrote there really is no need to pay a holding deposit and it puts the buyer at a disadvantage, there’s no obvious reason why a seller should not be prepared to sign the contract within a few days of the offer being accepted anyway.

  • #107735
    Profile photo of Chris McCarthy
    Chris McCarthy
    Participant

    @jp1 wrote:

    I have said this a 100 times to people and this forum… WHY PAY A DEPOSIT!!!

    Sadly jp1, I have seen 100’s of cases of disappointment where people who have NOT PAID a reservation deposit, do lose the property that they have worked hard to find, is just right and then gets taken from under their nose.

    And believe it or not it happens each month with some of our clients.

    You should of course NEVER make a reservation deposit until or unless you are a) entirely comfortable with the price of property, b) are genuinely happy with your purchase and it is fully affordable, and c) you can absolutely trust to the fact that your agent and lawyer can be trusted with the reservation deposit.

    If you do not make your reservation deposit and believe that you can have a verbal agreement, and that during the several weeks that it takes to arrange a private purchase contract, engage in searches, surveys and the like, and their cost are OK to be borne by you, and you trust the Vendor implicitly then of course don’t make a reservation deposit.

    The one thing about the properties that are selling today is the competitiveness, if a Vendor has decided to make the plunge, lower his price, accept the often bitter and tough decisions related to selling his property, you can bet your life there will be more people than you interested – everyone is out for the right deal, and if it is presented then that you want to buy but will kindly do so at your own pace, in your own way and at an appointed day in the future make a committment, then don’t be surprised that the Vendor will have a ZERO interest in you, until you demonstrate a financial intention to purchase – most easily acheived by a reservation deposit to keep the property off the market while you move to private purchase contract.

    In the wrong hands, handled the wrong way, I agree this is not a good idea. In the right manner however, it is often an absolute necessity if you don’t want to lose the sale.

    I presume when Katy sold her properties with us, she understood the value of having the Buyer make a commitment and demonstrate they were very serious in their intent.

    Please, nobody tell me there are no properties selling or that the Vendor should be so lucky, that boat don’t float, is naive in the extreme and will send us way off thread.

  • #107736
    Profile photo of Fuengi (Andrew)
    Fuengi (Andrew)
    Participant

    @dbmarcos99 wrote:

    Have I been misinformed? – I was under the impression that once a deposit has been accepted, then the vendor has to re-imburse it double if they pull out of the deal (if for example they receive a higher offer). That is the reason why a higher deposit for the purchaser, the better.
    (If this is not right, please correct me)

    basically that is correct.
    But there is more to simply reserving the property to take it of the market. Any agreement signed (along with the vendor signature) should tie down to what their responsibilities are for the sale.
    If the deposit has not been returned, then in my eyes the sale is still on. If I was the buyer, I would have my lawyer prepare for the completion, as stated in the agreement and go to completion, If the sellers do not turn up, do an acta notarial. I would then have a clear evidence that the vendor is in the wrong and claim not only my deposit but all extra costs, etc…

    Also I have also noticed that several agencies seem to sign acceptance of an offer on a vendors behalf. If this agent has done this, I would request to see the POA showing that they have the legal authority to do this. IF that cannot supply this information, ask for the complaint book (official gov one) . I would also get my lawyer to go after them for fraud, unless the issue is resolved to my satisfaction.

    @jp1 wrote:

    I have said this a 100 times to people and this forum… WHY PAY A DEPOSIT!!!

    About deposits. Yes can say its a buyers market, etc… But would you be willing to contract a lawyer, book flights from your own country, take time of work, etc…. with no security that the buyer would turn up for completion.

    @katy wrote:

    I thought that deposit to estate agents was something only done by gullible Brits 😆 A marbella agent who I knew told me never to pay a holding deposit, contacting your Lawyer should be enough. The past few years buyers don’t even bother with the 10% deposit.

    A deposit should always be taken in my opinion. If a buyer does not want the agency to hold the deposit (does happen of course even to me!) our paperwork allows for their lawyer/rep to hold it.

  • #107737
    Profile photo of Fuengi (Andrew)
    Fuengi (Andrew)
    Participant

    Alos do not forget financing. Applying for mortgages, getting valuations on the property, etc… as all time consuming and have a financial cost. A reservation agreements/contract allows you time to hold the property under agreed conditions while you prepare financing.

  • #107739
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    What searches does a lawyer do apart from getting the nota simple from the council and phoning the administradora? Anybody can do that. (Which explains why just about anybody can call themselves a lawyer in Spain)

    If you have got the finance in place then there should be very little delay in getting that contract signed. If you are buying a standard flat and somebody asks for a holding deposit then you might as well move onto the next standard flat and place an offer on that one instead. Try to get the vendors competing against each other!

    The risk is with the vendor that they might lose the buyer, not the other way around. If anything the vendor should be paying the buyer a deposit to keep hold of them!

  • #107740
    Profile photo of Fuengi (Andrew)
    Fuengi (Andrew)
    Participant

    @chopera wrote:

    What searches does a lawyer do apart from getting the nota simple from the council and phoning the administradora? Anybody can do that. (Which explains why just about anybody can call themselves a lawyer in Spain)

    When its a straight forward purchase, pretty much. That is why a lot of spanish do not use lawyers.

    @chopera wrote:

    If you have got the finance in place then there should be very little delay in getting that contract signed. If you are buying a standard flat and somebody asks for a holding deposit then you might as well move onto the next standard flat and place an offer on that one instead. Try to get the vendors competing against each other!

    If you bank has confirmed you can get financing, you still need to do the valuation, its still needs to go through the relevant departments within the bank. You are still looking at 3/4 weeks before the mortgage is in place.

    @chopera wrote:

    The risk is with the vendor that they might lose the buyer, not the other way around. If anything the vendor should be paying the buyer a deposit to keep hold of them!

    And if the buyer lives in the property or nearby, he can accept your offer. and simply keep on showing it. If no other buyer shows up all he has to do is turn up for the signing. little hassle, little cost. Neither party is beholden to the other.

  • #107741
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Well I admit if I were the vendor I would want something substantial to take the property off the market 🙂 If a buyer it would depend on the Agent who was holding my deposit. There are a lot of fly-by-nights working from home! I would think it is satisfactory for a Lawyer to hold the deposit.

    True most spanish don’t use a Lawyer but there is usually a mortgage involved and their legal representative will be present at the Notary. Also most Spanish are buying locally in a place they know well and probably know the background history of the property. As much as I dislike the legal guys I wouldn’t recommend a British person not to use them.

  • #107742
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    Yes obviously it’s different for people unfamiliar with the Spanish system, or buying from abroad. My original anecdote was about Spanish people buying locally, and buying a very common type of flat, of which there are many on the market competing for buyers right now. In these situations instead of placing a holding deposit they should be demanding that the contract is signed within a couple of days. I’ve known of Spanish people completing on a property within a fortnight – the biggest hurdle being trying to find a convenient date for everyone to meet up at the notary.

  • #107743
    Profile photo of Chopera
    Chopera
    Participant

    @fuengi wrote:

    If you bank has confirmed you can get financing, you still need to do the valuation, its still needs to go through the relevant departments within the bank. You are still looking at 3/4 weeks before the mortgage is in place.

    In my (albeit limited) experience this takes about a week. They’ll send a tasador around in a couple of days and take either the tasador’s valuation or the agreed price (whichever is lowest). In Madrid in the boom times many agents used mortgage brokers who in turn used tasadores who were quite “flexible” in their valuations. Things might have changed a bit now though.

    @fuengi wrote:

    And if the buyer lives in the property or nearby, he can accept your offer. and simply keep on showing it. If no other buyer shows up all he has to do is turn up for the signing. little hassle, little cost. Neither party is beholden to the other.

    If another buyer turns up the seller would lose the holding deposit he has paid to the original buyer. Of course the real problem with the idea is that there’s nothing to stop buyers from pulling out. In fact it encourges them to make multiple offers and take multiple holding deposits in the hope that some vendors pull out, and if not then they can just pull out themselves. It wasn’t a serious suggestion – I was just trying to make a point.

  • #107744
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    I think the worst system is the UK, really needs revising. Drags out to months and either side can drop out right up to the last week before exchanging contracts. USA is a good system.

    Our last sale in Spain took almost 2 months because the buyer needed a mortgage and the banks were dragging their feet. When we did complete we had all agreed 1st of the month and the bank providing the mortgage changed it as they wanted the money out by 31st of previous month. Not sure what that was about 😕

  • #107745
    Profile photo of Chris McCarthy
    Chris McCarthy
    Participant

    You make some good points as ever Chopera but I think what Fuengi and myself are pointing out is that in answer to jp1 it is more complex than asking 100 times why pay a deposit or a reservation fee.

    On our coast, 100’s of people lose out to another if they do not pay a reservation fee / deposit.

    It is not foolproof, Vendors can still mess buyers around, but a bit of commitment has a HUGE difference and i would go so far as to say is vital if you WANT that property.

  • #107746
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Have found that buyers mess the vendors about too 🙂 What is wrong with some people, they seem to be lots of “dreamers”. Have had them view, take lots of photo/video shots of pool and home. Say they are going to put in an offer and you never hear from them again!! We started to refuse to allow anyone to take any shots.

    One house I sold…and this was with VIVA. Viewer pulled me to one side to say he wanted to do a deal and by-pass the Agent. He came back 3 weeks later, we had sold and Viva had taken a deposit 😆

  • #107747
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I agree with that in 95% of the cases there is no need for a deposit from the buyers point of view but when you have a property that is very well priced people will go after it no matter how the current “climate” is. Last deal I was about to make it was actually the seller that pulled out because they thought the offer was to low after thinking more about it. The money had been wired to our account but the seller and the buyer hadn’t signed the contract yet. We ofcourse refunded their money.

  • #107751
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    We put down a deposit with an Agent years ago. 2 spanish sisters selling a beachfront villa they had inherited. They would only accept full price. After a few days they came back to us and asked for 25% more. This used to be common spanish practice on the coast. We dropped out and the Agent wasn’t very keen to give us our money back, he thought we should buy another property through him. We had actually bought another privately, I’ll just say we got the money back with great difficulty 8)

    If you feel you must put down a deposit (I wouldn’t) then ensure the pre-contract includes details of the property and price agreed.

  • #107753
    Profile photo of angie
    angie
    Spectator

    When we say we are going to buy a property we do, however it may have taken us a while to make up our minds, but then we stick to it, a bit old fashioned there with a shake of the hand, many still s–t on you even so, not many gentlemen and gentlewomen around any more 🙄

    If buying through an agent, I would be happier to put a deposit down, fully refundable now though subject to contract and normal checks. However, I would not part with 3000 euros deposit as they all asked for once ever again to’take the property off the market’, there’s plenty more where that one came from, more like a 500 euro deposit fully refundable as above.

    Above all, everything in writing and included in the contract, as well as time penalties on new build, from now on, UK or abroad 😉 Basically as watertight as possible 😉

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.