September 15, 2011 at 12:26 pm #56360
Here’s an update in my efforts to live (part time, anyway) in Barcelona:
1. I finally have my documents in order (numero extranjero and residency). We struggled for a time and think that someone in Madrid was actually working against us (marriage certificate screwed up, denied numero extranjero because it will cause my husband ‘to pay more taxes’ (like someone in the police department cares), etc. I was denied 4 times before we found a different way to get my number, using our screwed-up marriage certificate. And this was with a lawyer’s assistance.
2. Looking at pisos: While customer service has improved a bit in Barcelona (in the last 10 years), it is sometimes difficult to understand that some people are serious about selling. Rudeness, indifference, cancelled appointments, impossible to make appointments have been my experience.
And when visiting pisos, other than the shock of what people call a bedroom (hint – if an individual bed will not fit in the room, it isn’t a bedroom), it has mostly been an smooth experience. Except for the woman who could be Franco’s sister or something who interrogated us at the door, asking why 3 of us came to see the piso. One of my friends was very polite and said he didn’t understand while my husband kept demanding to know the limit. And maybe the conserje who kept yelling at us the the piso was sold, even though the owner said no.
When leaving about 70% of the pisos, the agents or owners always begin lowering the prices.
Still, the price of aticos in Barcelona, are a bit overpriced. We may wait until February. More to come.
September 15, 2011 at 3:12 pm #105777
Thanks for the update Gary – I’ve been through a similar process in Madrid a couple of times. Most agents just don’t seem to care – they don’t prepare any details for the property, they don’t know how big it is, or what the situation is with the seller. They just turn up with the key and open the door. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen photos of a bathroom on idealista, and they haven’t even bothered to put the toilet seat down. You also see many photos that give away how long the property has been on the market for – such as snow outside, or the date printed on the photo.
September 15, 2011 at 3:55 pm #105779
A familiar story Gary.
Makes you wonder why they bother.
Mind you, part of it is a legacy from the boom, when everything sold regardless. They haven’t come to terms with the new situation. Give them a few more years and they might wise up.
September 15, 2011 at 8:09 pm #105781
Catalans, take pride in their bussiness accuman, effeciency & commercial competance. I sugguest FC Barcelona to give management lectures to the industry bosses and wake up to realise that having the right surname is not sufficent to progress in the real world..
September 16, 2011 at 8:20 am #105783
My experience of the agency business here and in other countries leads me to conclude that the agency business here is really not professional. High agency fees, but then really unflattering photos, bad write-up and just no follow-up with prospective buyers. It used to be easy money. Now much more effort is needed, if agencies are to thrive.
September 16, 2011 at 12:35 pm #105788
Its not only the property sector that works in a non professional manner.
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