Considering first Spanish property, advice please.

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This topic contains 32 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Anonymous Anonymous 6 years, 10 months ago.

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  • #55391
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    Anonymous
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    Hi there

    My wife and I are strongly considering buying a place in Spain. We have about £20k for a deposit and would like to spend a maximum of £60k. We are just after something small that could rent out and also accommodate us in the winter for weekend breaks away.

    We’d really appreciate any advice on some of the best areas to buy and any websites that can be recommend to look for places within our budget.

    I’m assuming this budget may get us a one bedroom flat/apartment? I have no idea where to start looking though. Our requirements would be for a place near an airport and the sea (within an hour from both).

    We’re recently married and neither of us have pensions so we’re also thinking this may be a nice little investment for us both.

    Thank you for any help you can give us.

  • #96081
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    Anonymous
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    60k won’t buy you anything close to the coast but there will be a fair amount of inland properties at that bracket. Trouble with these is that you’ll not find them easy to rent, also in winter inland Spain can get very cold. Whatever else you do you must be able to finance any purchase and its running costs by yourselves.

    Some advice I have picked up after over a year of looking:

    – Take your time. Prices have been falling for over two years and look set to do so for at least another one, probably longer. Whatever anyone tells you the market has not bottomed yet. Not even close.
    – Good websites are http://www.segundamano.es (Spanish only) and http://www.kyero.com. Don’t trust these alone however. Take time to come over here and see for yourself.
    – In most cases asking prices are still way too high. Bargain very hard and be prepared to walk away.
    – If and when the time comes to but use an independent solicitor. There are many pitfalls, most of which can be avoided by your own diligence.
    – Do take the effort to thoroughly research the market.

  • #96083
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Have a look here

    http://www.fotocasa.es Just select your region.

    You can select English. This is a private sales website. Of course some properties are advertised by agents, but not that many. I sold my property through it, and I think it’s the best Spanish site (from a usability perspective).

    Andulacia has good winter weather. But it’s not the more sophistictaed part of Spain. Personally if I was buying again I would buy in Majorca, it really is a beautiful Island.

    It terms of renting, my advise would be forget it. It really would not be worth the effort, and I expect that you would make nothing, in fact I think you would be in loss after 25% tax on ALL income imposed by the tax office (no costs allowed).

    If you buy into an established community I expect you will have none of the problems on this site with regard illegal builds.

    Try and avoid a Spanish Bank for the loan, they seem to charge what they like in terms of costs and as non-spanish you will be at an disadvantge.

    Good luck.

  • #96089
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Thanks a lot for your comprehensive responses guys, we really appreciate them.

    We are still really keen to buy a place in the sun, I don’t want to make money as such, but I’d love the rental income to cover the mortgage (after tax). Do you think this is achievable? I small yearly loss certainly wont hurt us either fortunately.

  • #96090
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Any property at that price would be rural. I heard that banks will no longer give mortgages on this type of property. If you did find anything at this price it would probably need more than the purchase price just to get it habitable. Don’t forget oncosts of app. 12%

  • #96092
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Thank you, is this any good? It looks good to me, I think this is cheap for something so near to the coast in a warm destination.

    2 bedroom apartment, Villamartin, Alicante, Costa Blanca South 65k Euros. (Description from website below)

    65,000 euros.

    ( Resale )

    ABSOLUTE BARGAIN PRICE!! 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom middle floor apartment. Priced to sell. Terrace into lounge/dining area and separate kitchen, 2 bedrooms with lots of storage and family bathroom. Close to bars/restaurants & entertainment. Well presented proeprty. Communal pool and close to golf courses. Sea views. Fully fitted kitchen. Viewing recommended.
    Established in 1972, Villamartin is built around one of Spain’s most prestigious golf courses – the Club de Golf Villamartin – and is home to a cosmopolitan, international community, some of whom live here all year round, others simply holiday here in the golf season. Villamartin is not just a golfer’s paradise, there are plenty of other activities available with five marinas, horse riding stables and two water parks within easy driving distance. And of course the beaches – all the major beaches along this stretch of the Costa Blanca are Blue Flag, and there are also plenty of hidden gems – smaller, quieter beaches waiting to be discovered.

    In the central plaza facilities are plentiful with a boutique, golfing shop, hairdressers, bank with cash point, pharmacy, health centre, supermarket, bars, restaurants and nightclubs. All the restaurants have outdoor seating and many provide live entertainment, although due to their popularity it is recommended that you reserve a table for your evening meal.

  • #96093
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    Anonymous
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    @luckstar wrote:

    but I’d love the rental income to cover the mortgage (after tax). .

    This is impossible. It would be a great situation but it is impossible.

  • #96094
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @flosmichael wrote:

    @luckstar wrote:
    but I’d love the rental income to cover the mortgage (after tax). .

    This is impossible. It would be a great situation but it is impossible.

    Is this because the rental potential of such a place in not likely to cover the mortgage? Please explain why?

  • #96095
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    “in fact I think you would be in loss after 25% tax on ALL income imposed by the tax office (no costs allowed)” .

    I think there is another thread on this. Isn’t from 1st of January this year we as non residents were allowed to set off all bonafide costs.

  • #96102
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    Anonymous
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    @luckstar wrote:

    @flosmichael wrote:
    @luckstar wrote:
    but I’d love the rental income to cover the mortgage (after tax). .

    This is impossible. It would be a great situation but it is impossible.

    Is this because the rental potential of such a place in not likely to cover the mortgage? Please explain why?

    1) Community fees are quite high. 100+ Euros per month.

    2) REntals are low. In Torrevieja that you mentioned there are 1000s of properties for rent. Some of them give less than £1000/year i.e. less than community fees (let alone cost of utilities plus tear and wear).

    Save more money and buy a better property without expecting it to yield any income.

  • #96108
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    Chris McCarthy
    Participant

    @flosmichael wrote:

    Save more money and buy a better property without expecting it to yield any income.

    Not often that Floshmichael and I agree but here you go, twice in two days! I was thinking of saying something similar myself along the lines of…

    Do not buy looking for any income, much less relying upon it, any that you may get should be a bonus / happy benefit and not the reason for purchase.

  • #96115
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Hi,

    I agree with previous poster with regard to rental income. There is lots of competition on the costas for rental. Also familiarise yourself with tenancy laws in spain. Short term rental is ok but longterm rentals can be tricky – 11 month max longterm lets are the norm any longer term and the tenant has rights. The law tends to favour tenants rather than landlord in spain. I know that in a good location, upmarket urbanisation the rental income on a 2 bed apartment you would get apprx E450 per month. The maintenace fees vary but expect to pay on costa blanca anything up to 450 per year. Suma E150. One piece of advice if buying don’t just go for cheap because it is cheap, take into account location, amenities, closeness to airport and watch out for what neighbours might be like!

    Good luck in your decision! 🙂

  • #96121
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Torrevieja? Don’t want to upset anyone that might live there, but I wouldn’t have a place there if they paid me £65,000! 😀 There are so many properties for sale there, people are desperate to shift them. If if you got something for that amount of money I think you’d struggle to get anyone to stay there, it would be extremely basic for that sort of money.

  • #96126
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    There are some really informed opinions on here guys and I appreciate them, thank you.

    I am not looking to make an income; I just want a place that at best is self sufficient and a home we can looking forward to using a few times a year, as well as a nest egg/place to holiday/live for when we retire.

    Thank you all

  • #96127
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Torrevieja is the kind of place where you should rent for 6 months before buying. Check you aren’t making a terrible mistake.

    Mark

  • #96128
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    @agoreira wrote:

    Torrevieja? Don’t want to upset anyone that might live there, but I wouldn’t have a place there if they paid me £65,000! 😀 There are so many properties for sale there, people are desperate to shift them. If if you got something for that amount of money I think you’d struggle to get anyone to stay there, it would be extremely basic for that sort of money.

    I’m afraid I rather agree. Torrevieja is pretty undesirable IMHO, it probably has nice areas, but I’ve not seen them in my few visits to “Torre”. You’d probably be better off buying a flat in Alicante (city), or Gran Alacant.

  • #96129
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Should I keep saving and perhaps focus on Mallorca?

  • #96132
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    It all depends upon what you want, but I really think buying in Torrevieja would be a mistake at the moment. I expect that you’d be better off getting poor interest on your money in the bank, than investing in Torre.

    The nicer places of course cost more, a lot more. But would probably make a safer investment.

    As for where to buy, there is some nice property near Denia. However. I just wouldn’t recommend Spain as property investment at the moment.

    There is a lot of hype (mainly from agents) about price reductions. But these claims are frequently exaggerated. We are a long way from reality in the expat market IME.

  • #96134
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    @luckstar wrote:

    Should I keep saving and perhaps focus on Mallorca?

    I would advise you to get as many cheap Ryanair/Easyjet flisghts as possible and visit as many regios in Spaina s you can.

    Go to Malaga, Granada, Almeria, Murcia, Alicante, Valencia, Barcelona, Gerona and Reus, Majorca, Menorca, maybe even BIlbao and Santiago de Compostella and explore the surrounding for a couple of days/weeks. Even 3 or 4 destinations would
    give you a better idea.

    Then you will be able to take the best decissions as you will know exactly where to go.

  • #96135
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Only assuming you and your wife are still working. If that’s the case do as others have already said, ..don’t rush into buying anything. The cardinal rule.

    Monitor prices, use this time (maybe 2 years or more??) while prices remain depressed, to fly into different airports for short breaks, get a feel for the different areas and talk to expats and locals and benefit from their experiences.

    Contrary to what’s been written, Torrevieja (and Villamartin) suits some people because of the facilities, English widely spoken and the high proportion of expats living there. Gives a certain amount of security to some. Others seek a quieter, remote and more Spanish lifestyle, depends on what you like.

    My advice is, take your time to become as well informed as possible before buying anything.

  • #96138
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    @iano wrote:

    Contrary to what’s been written, Torrevieja (and Villamartin) suits some people because of the facilities, English widely spoken and the high proportion of expats living there. Gives a certain amount of security to some. Others seek a quieter, remote and more Spanish lifestyle, depends on what you like.

    That’s certainly correct, it does suit many people. However, I do wonder how viable it is to live long term in an English ghetto. The facilites for Brits are good though, and the new hospital is very good IME, no need to speak Spanish to get good healthcare.

    From an investment perspective though, I do think Torre is a poor choice.

  • #96139
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Hi,

    I’m afraid I have to jump in and say that I have an apartment 5kms south of Torre and it is near beach and all of that. I don’t live in an english ghetto – it is very cosmopolitain and I choose that particularly urbanisation for that reason. Spanish, belgian, german, dutch, norwegian and scandanavian, Irish and english all live side by side. True there are some urbs near by and no disrespect to english people but I wonder why do they ever leave their country – it’s like little england. Just be careful where you are choosing rather than putting a price bracket on as so many people do nowadays. Of course try and get as place as cheap as you can but research the urbanisation if that’s what you want, the area. The area where I bought is between Punta Prima and Playa Flemenca and has great facilities. Some people never speak a word of spanish while there, I do and first thing I did was to do spanish lessons here in Ireland so at least if I can converse even be it ever so slightly in the language.

  • #96144
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant
    mark wrote:
    Torrevieja is the kind of place where you should rent for 6 months before buying. Check you aren’t making a terrible mistake.

    Mark

    Absolutely right Mark. Torrevieja is like Benidorm, one either loves it or hates it.

    A friend of mine bought in Torrevieja did everything wrong, basically bought the first place he was shown, his wife and kids moved in later ,within 10 days he was given an ultimatum by his wife”It is Torrevieja ,or me” within hours they moved to a town near Benidorm ,but this time only rented stayed for four years then went back to the UK. Who said love is dead?.

    Concerning the original post, I agree with other posters that prices in Spain will at best stay still for any period of up to 5 years, supply is so far ahead of demand no way can prices go up. It is always difficult when one has a dream to do something, there is always the worry “If only we had done that, things would be better” I suggest you save as much money as you can for say 5 years then think of buying a more expensive property, where lets will be easier,in a coastal area it is lovely to wake up in the fields of a rural property but to provide rental income forget it. Spain has major problem with its tourist industry ,due to the high Euro Spain is certainly not competitive on price, plenty of other countries offer beautifull beaches, countryside at half the price.

    Good luck to you, I hope you achieve your dream, but as I have written on this forum many times, take your time, do not believe everything you are told, rent first for as long a period as you can to see if you like the area , in a nutshell Caveat Emptor.

  • #96145
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Being honest I don’t think you have enough money right now. Sometimes we have to accept that. I did when I fell in love with a £760 pair of Jimmy choos 😉

  • #96147
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Katy , you fell in love with a guy called Jimmy for £760. What price we pay for falling in love !!!!!!!!.

  • #96148
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    [
    quote=”katy”]Being honest I don’t think you have enough money right now. Sometimes we have to accept that. I did when I fell in love with a £760 pair of Jimmy choos :wink:[/quote]

    Spain as an investment at present is a no go area.
    The much advertised a place in the sun auction on 13 dec in uk did not take place as there was no interest in any of the properties.

    These were all new key ready properties within 40 mins of an airport and 15 mins from a beach.
    All fully documented and many with no reserves.
    This is the state of the investment in spanish property.
    If you have the money to purchase without finance and are buying for a lifestyle choice then it is a good time to purchase if you can acquire a good property in a good area outside of these half deserted ghettos at a keen price.
    I got to agree with Katy keep on dreaming.

  • #96149
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    katy
    Spectator

    @shakeel wrote:

    Katy , you fell in love with a guy called Jimmy for £760. What price we pay for falling in love !!!!!!!!.

    Believe me Shakeel I paid many more noughts than that for falling in love but it’s too negative for this happy little forumers 😆

  • #96151
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    @angela wrote:

    Hi,

    I’m afraid I have to jump in and say that I have an apartment 5kms south of Torre and it is near beach and all of that. .

    My comments were based on my personal experiences. I first stayed at Villamartin about 15 years ago, and it was OK, but nothing great. My wife commented after we had sat there for about an hour having a meal, I haven’t heard anyone speaking Spanish yet! Went back about 5-6 years ago and I could not believe how congested and built up it had become. You hit the roundabout at La Zinnia, and the queue into Torre starts there, and you struggle to park when you get to Torre, after having passed some industrial looking beaches on the right. The beach, La Zinnia? is crowded, restaurants are crowded, and with the most surly Spanish waiters I have ever met. Playa Flamenca? Sorry, I won’t ever be going back, even as a visitor.

  • #96152
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Sorry, hit the button twice!

  • #96154
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    agoreira,

    Funnily enough was up in Villarmartin last summer and I’d have to agree with you. We went to the centre for a meal and thought out we’e never get! I personally don’t like La Zenia beach at all. There are other lovely beaches Campomor, Cala Capitain. Yes the roads are hectic during the summer around that area. When I’m there during the summer we tend to try places away from the maddening crowd, San Miguel, Mar Menor, there is plenty to see and do and plenty of lovely restaurants to try. I have a young family so for now it suits as convenience to airports, supermarkets and beaches are important at this stage. However if I were retired I would use it more during the winter months. In fairness I have only had two bad experiences with waiters in the last 5 years, the first was in an italian restaurant by spanish staff, the second was an english upmarket restaurant run by english staff. In general I have always found the spanish staff in supermarkets and restaurants to be very mannerly.

  • #96353
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Nobody has mentioned the fact that with just 20k deposits and wanting to spend 60k sterling with financing, plus purchase costs will take the total to over 67 k sterling in total. Not to mention you will probably need at least 35% of that in cash – and that is if the banks lend to the maximum. Therefore needing at least 23k in cash.

    Also although I am not familiar with Mallorca, what with it being an island I would have though prices would be very much higher than that?

    In reality what everyone has said he is correct, for that price you will not get a rental property that will cover itself – maybe you could look at other countries such as Turkey – there are probably billions of bargains at the moment and you would get a lot more for your money.

    Just a few thoughts.

  • #96355
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Yes good points. Re Turkey, may be cheap but I wouldn’t buy there. Was in Mexico recently, speaking to a local guy. He lived an hour inland from deserted white beaches, palm trees full of coconuts etc. 1 hectare land, new 2 bedroomed house overlooking large lake….$40,000. Wouldn’t consider it 🙄

    For all it’s faults Spain is about the only viable place to live year round taking into account no visa problems, communications etc. climate

    I don’t understand why Spain doesn’t lower the cost of buying to kick start the market. I hear Notary and Land Registry fees have also increased. A few years ago we looked into moving to an area close to cadiz. House close to same price as ours. Do the math, agents fees, plus valia etc for selling, buying add another 10+%. We would have had to input a considerable amount to remain with the same value house.

  • #96604
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    I found a few on here for your budget.
    Found the site via another forum.
    There seem to be some good comments from other posters on there as well regarding the agent.

    http://www.algorfarealestate.com or http://www.distantshores.es

    They seem to be the same site under different names.

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