>> Thursday, 15 December 2011
But it seems that so many people are seduced by the sunshine in Spain and by aggressive and slick agents and developers that they are willing to purchase unseen, to buy off-plan or even remotely via the internet and to basically purchase without the slightest clue about just what it is they're getting for their money.
People are buying Spanish property without the completion of surveys, without employing independent legal advice, without considering the long term investment potential of their property and without considering the practicalities of owning a second home in an overseas location...and what's more worrying is the fact that due to Spain's universal appeal more and more people are doing so every year.
So, the time has come to promote the idea of applying a cautious approach to buying property in Spain starting with - don't leave your brain on the plane...When you arrive in Spain you will undoubtedly be seduced by the surroundings of your chosen destination, you will be able to immerse yourself in the dream of owning a home in the idyllic location and living a holiday-like lifestyle all year round should you so choose...and these feelings will leave you elated but vulnerable to the traps and pitfalls that are there at every stage of the property buying process. Remember, those traps and pitfalls exist in every country in the world and do not change just because you've change country!
Therefore, before you even travel to Spain you have to arm yourself to deal with buying a property. If you get your mindset right and you set yourself a realistic budget based on the research you do into the types of property you're interested in and the region you're interested in you will step off the plane prepared.
Employ defensive tactics - know that if something looks like a bargain and is selling at a price that is 'too good to be true,' chances are you should walk away! Remember how you would behave if you were buying back home and while I'm definitely not suggesting you set out determined to see the bad in everyone and convinced that each person you speak to is trying to rip you off, I am telling you that not everyone you come across will have your best interests at heart!
Find out how the property buying process works in the region of Spain you're interested in, you need to know whether you will be asked for a securing deposit when you register an interest in a property, you need to know how much this will likely be. You have to know whether an offer is legally binding, you need to understand how property law works in your region of choice. All this research can be done before you even set foot on the plane! If you arm yourself with solid basic facts then you will be in a strong, confident position and you will be less likely to fall for estate agent exaggerations.
Don't be rushed into making a decision or parting with cash. Make sure you employ independent and qualified legal support to ensure your interests are protected. If you are unsure of the meaning of any paper work you are asked to sign make sure you get it translated. Pay attention to detail - make sure boundaries are marked on the contract you sign, make sure your solicitor confirms them with the local land registry office.
Never ever assume anything; never ever accept it when someone assures you of a fact...get facts and assumptions confirmed by having them written into the legally binding contract. Don't become a victim of the Spanish property market by failing to do your homework and by being a passive purchaser.
Do your comprehensive and boring homework and approach buying a property in Spain in the same way you would approach buying a property back home - it really is that simple!