July 27, 2005 at 3:54 pm #51177
(Developers of the Green Hills , Santa Maria Golf) We are in the process of trying to recover our deposit of 118,00+euros from the Grupo Eralia company. We paid this amount 2 years ago this October. The Apartment will never be built due to the revoking of the planning license by Marbella Town Hall.
The lawyers that we used, Direct Lawyers Marbella, failed to get us a Bank Guarantee, only they did not tell us this until March of this year! Only when we demanded to see the said document did one appear dated 17th March 2005. !!! Apparently, we cannot exercise this until October 2006. Anyway, that’s another ongoing story.
After our visit to Spain in June, we appointed a new lawyer ,who was highly recommended to us. She wrote to Direct Lawyers( we have given her power of attorney) asking for all our paperwork and return of the monies outstanding in our account, which we paid to them in advance. A sum of 7412.83 Euros. We agree there have been some disbursements . Please remember , at this point, that not so much as a shovel full of earth has or ever will be moved !! This is the amount of money that is available to be returned to us…..0 Euros!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
They told our new lawyer that they had paid out all the fees, taxes etc that would normally be paid out by completion!!!!!!!!
This is the breakdown:
Legal fees. Purchase…………….6438.43 E ?????????????
Legal fees .Direct debits………….348.00 E
Legal fees. 2 wills………………….556.80 E
Legal fees. Bank account…………..69.60 E
Balance outstanding……………………0 Euros !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
We also had 300 Euros in a bank account:
25/05/05… 144.68 E payment. Wills
24/06/05…20.82 E payment. Burofax.
In client account 134.50 E
We find this UNBELIEVABLE !! As do our Lawyers.
Can we report them to the police for “mis use” (theft) of our money? We will be taking this up with the Spanish Law Society.
Any comments would be appreciated. Claire
Edited to say that on 3rd June 2010 we succeeded in winning our Court action against DLM. We won our first hearing in 2008. They appealed that decision but lost!! The Judge upheld our claim. 😀
July 27, 2005 at 6:30 pm #58547
We also have problems with DLM (recommended by ***** Estates) in its latest incarnation.
We bought an apartment at Sea Golf Apartments in Alcaidesa in Sept 2001. By September 2004 we were very unhappy with the progress towards completion and the lack of information from DLM. We had our contract checked by a UK solicitor who said it was the worst he had ever seen. At that point we decided to invoke the guarantee. We had face to face meetings with DLM who came up with numerous excuses for not giving us a copy of our guarantee but assured us it was perfectly valid and if we signed an all encompassing power of attorney they would start the proceedings to reclaim our money. On advice we forwarded them a power of attorney limiting them to only invoking the guarantee. From that point our instructions were repeatedly ignored – obviously delaying tactics hoping that the apartments would be complete before we could invoke the guarantee. Surprise, surprise when our new solicitor investigated the guarantee it did not exist.
At the moment, working through our UK solicitor, we are reporting them to the Colegio de Abogados and we are awaiting the outcome.
Has anyone succeeded in getting anywhere with a complaint to the Colegio?
The nightmare continues….
July 27, 2005 at 9:41 pm #58548
I don’t know whether I should be pleased we( my husband & I) are not the only ones being fleeced by DLM or alarmed. 😯 This is what I don’t understand. I get a bit annoyed when some people who have posted here, say we Brits are at best naive, at worse, stupid! Who in their right minds, would EVER conceive that we could be treated like this by a lawyer ? What is more, how are they getting away with it? We intend to fight them tooth and nail. At this moment in time, we are 126,000+ Euros down the line after nearly 2 years and we have absolutely nothing!…except more lawyers fees. Do keep in touch.
It is truly SHOCKING! 👿
July 28, 2005 at 2:04 pm #58556
DLM would say that, wouldn’t they!! They should come with a public health warning plastered all over their smart offices 😡 !!
August 9, 2005 at 6:58 am #58617
Hi Claire just to let you know we did not get our cheque yesterday, but have been told we will get it to day. Have read up on your threads you just can not believe that these things can happen. it is not isolated incidents but on a large scale. This has to be very bad for the spanish as a hole.
It just a nightmare you think you have done all your home work found an independent lawyer looked in to the background of the builder and agent we saw other propertys he had built spoke to other people about the agents all the signs were good. Asked all the wright questions and still we are stuggling. I hope you can make progress with your claim. But how do you tell the good from the evil for evil is what they are they ruin peoples dreams lives and futures
August 9, 2005 at 7:30 am #58618
Why am I not suprised that your cheque did not appear! 😮 That’s one thing you can depend upon from them (?), their failure to deliver ! I really hope you get it today….stay on their backs, make yourself a pain to them. How do you know the good from the bad? It doesn’t seem to matter how good our research is.
You get to be like us…don’t trust anyone…don’t believe anyone. It’s tough!
August 19, 2005 at 5:57 am #58680
We too are victims of the Green Hills nightmare. We went ahead with purchasing what we thought would be a decent investment apartment in Green Hills, in Oct 2003, and have parted with 119,000 euros. Then last February, our lawyers, the useless Andersons in Marbella informed me it was not going to be built.
They have refused our refund and the lawyers advice is that we would need to start a very lengthly action in order to recover the money. As yet I have to see our bank guarantee, and am in the process of finding a new lawyer to work on my behalf. I have been recommended Jose Sanchez, whom I have spoken to before.
Am I correct in understanding you now have your bank guarantee but are unable to excercise it until Oct 2006?
Naturally our initial Ocean Estates contact is no longer! And unbelievably they are actually still trying to sell on properties in our imaginery block to other poor unsuspecting clients. I totally agree with another user on this forum, that we are not stupid Brits, but trust that a large reputable(??) company like Ocean together what seems like large well known lawyers would be highly unlikely to fleece their clients. We are obviously totally unable to directly compare our system with Spains!
Let me know how you are getting on and I will keep you posted. There must be many others at Green Hills with our problem!
August 19, 2005 at 7:47 am #58682MelosineParticipant
Having read so many times about the problems with this developer how come the media ,who are SO eager for ANY newsworthy stories about Brits abroad, turn a blind eye .
August 19, 2005 at 8:21 am #58683
It’s good to hear of another person affected by Grupo Eralias disgusting tactics, although I am sorry to hear you are another of many. I have been trying for many months to find others who bought on the higher level of the Green Hills development, without success. By chance I have “met” Graham on here recently, under “HOLIDAY LETTINGS” and his information has been music to our ears in that he has been able to give us DEC 2003 as the time when this problem arose…NOT MARCH 2005 as was our case!! 👿 He bought an apartment on the lower level, which he went to see last week. The show flat is only just ready. It was supposed to be ready at EASTER! We are in the process of installing a new computer ( awaiting a connection lead as old one not compatible!) and so I have not been able to e-mail Graham who kindly let me have his e-mail address. Hopefully, this week-end i can sit down and ask him a couple of ?’s.
We are probably one step ahead of you in that we have got a bank guarantee that we supposedly cannot action until OCTOBER 2006! 👿 👿 👿 We have changed lawyers from DIRECT LAWYERS MARBELLA who have also “swallowed up 6000=euros in so called payments & expenses……… They did b***** all except pay over our deposit of 118000+euros (almost 119000e) to the developers WITHOUT getting the bank guarantee!!! My husband did not believe the authenticity of the document and so we brought home with us the original document, and we have been told by 3 lawyers that it is authentic. My husband is STILL worried about it!
Rather than go through the story again….people on here must be tired of my rantings 😀 We bought on Green Hills for our own personal family use. It has been a nightmare experience! What REALLY bugs us is the outright lies told to us by OE. DLM AND GE, and their refusal to answer our pertinent questions. 🙁 I hope to hear from you. Claire.
August 19, 2005 at 9:52 am #58684MelosineParticipant
Claire I am ,unfortunately for you, not involved in this company.
However having read many letters ,on various forums about the problems with this developer in particular, I am at a loss to understand why the media aren’t investigating for do access these sites looking for likely candidates for their programmes.
Did you locate this developer in the UK ? If so perhaps contacting the UK media might help or Trading Standards to see if they have a file on this company.
Have e.mailed you direct.
August 19, 2005 at 12:07 pm #58686
We were shown the Green Hills site by Ocean Estates. We had looked at several other properties with them. We did not go on a “viewing week-end” We were staying in Frigiliana, and took one day out “just to look “!! On seeing the location and another development by Grupo Eralia, it certainly had the “WOW!” factor…….so we put the wheels in motion. as anybody will tell you who has/was buying there, it is a lovely location and, Grupo Eralia DO build very nice developments. We saw 3 others they are building now, when we went out in May, but they are all over the 400,000 euros mark and that is too much. Also, not in such a good location. The problem lies in Grupo Eralia not returning the deposit back to those people they have let down. Our contracts expire in October 2005 with them. Do they really think anyone is going to renew their contract with them IF they ever got planning permission? I wonder what will happen to that parcel of land in the future? Personally, I would welcome the opportunity to let the world know how badly we have been treated ( my husband is less keen!) But often these companies just want to make a good program for themselves, with little respect for the victims. Thank you for your concerns. It is appreciated.
August 19, 2005 at 12:26 pm #58687
Have you tried getting written confirmation of the guarantee directly from the insurance company? Our solicitor contacted the insurance company stated on our contract and received written notification that no guarantee had been taken out in our name. This was not a particularly difficult thing to do but obviously too difficult for lawyers in smart offices in Marbella!
August 19, 2005 at 1:16 pm #58689
I ‘m not quite sure what you mean ! 😕 We did not have a guarantee when DLM signed our contract back in October 2003, even though they told us we did !!! We DID get one issued 15th April. 2005 after Grupo Eralia had to deposit a large sum of money to cover these guarantees. Now, we have been assured this document is legitimate. It is signed by the Governor of the bank, a subsidery of Banco Andalucia. Our solicitors have been in communication with the bank and are awaiting the return of their legal dept. in September to move further forward.
I read your post to my husband……….he almost went into meltdown 😆
October 15, 2005 at 4:53 pm #59110
We are sending this today 15 October 2005 having just come back from Marbella this afternoon.
We are also buyers of a Green Hills apartment at the upper block which is obviously never going to be built, only we got to know about all this just on September 19, 2005, when we called Eralia to ask them when could we go over to choose our tiles and kitchen tops!!!!! Apparently, they should have let us know about this more than a year ago!!!!
We are exhausted at the moment but will be putting the entire story on the forum sometime tomorrow for all of you. So, feel free to reply.
We do not have the same lawyers as yourselves and our agent was different FDP Savills in Marbella. However, let me tell you that our lawyers till now have acted in the same way as yours failing to obtain bank guarantees at the signing of the original contract (although it was a contract clause) and presenting us now (and after a screaming and chasing match for the last 3 weeks) with a bank guarantee that was issued in May 2005 and can be acted upon in September 2006. They deny having any knowledge or notification from Eralia that the building licence was suspended and day by day the plot thickens!!!!!
We just wanted to make this initial contact with all of you so that you know that there are more of us!!!
We will come back with more details of our story.
Barbara & Katerina
October 16, 2005 at 8:37 am #59112
Hi Barbara & Katarina,
Firstly, I am so sorry that you are in this situation. I thought it was bad enough that we only found out about it in March 2005. We are WAAAAAAAAAAY ahead of you on this, so maybe we can help out on the ground work that we have covered.
If you email me, I will tell you privately what we are doing.
October 16, 2005 at 8:46 am #59113
As is now obvious, people buying on the upper level of the Santa Maria Green Hills development seem not to have been granted bank guarantees at the time of signing contracts ( as was definitely advised to us by the lawyer), Does this not raise the question…..
“Was it because the Bank knew of problems with the building licence and would therefore not issue one?”
The building licence was revoked 4 weeks, 3 days AFTER our contract was signed. If that is the case, then that raises more serious questions, which our lawyers have indicated to us !!
October 17, 2005 at 7:34 am #59118
I thought we were having a rough ride over Santa Maria Greenhills, But Barbara & Katrina are in a worse situation. Interestingly we were spun the same lies by our estate agent & lawyer, both different firms. Katarina has done an amazing amount of work on their case, she is fluent in Spanish, I believe. (We spent 2 hours on the phone last night !! 🙂 . Hopefully, we can help each other. At least they have had the satisfaction of a face to face with the directors of Eralia and told them exactly what they thought…. in a dignified way. Hopefully, Katarina will tell you of their plight.
Mark, they would have a good example for your article on “when it all goes wrong in Spain” Together, we could verify the facts. They are wanting to put this in the media headlights! 😀
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