Spain here we come

Idiots property guide for buying in Spain

Wow! The sun the beaches the bars and restaurants the countryside a new Spanish home! Sell up and retire young and spend your own money instead of giving it to what ever party gets elected. Would I ever go back to the UK? ‘No way Jose.’

Depressed and disillusioned at the failings of politicians. Has Britain turned its back on you? The reality is that the ineffectual policies in the way the justice system functions have failed the voters. Decades of social engineering by the political elite has resulted in where we are today.

Those walking tall from the courts accused of rioting include not only the usual suspects but also the privileged, some professionals and malcontent parents who encourage their offspring to join in the fun.

What the country witnessed was a modern day version of Sodom and Gomorrah, fire and brimstone rained down on the innocent victims and their property. Viewers watching and hearing the events unfold from every news channel could not believe this raging savagery was actually Great Britain. The rioters glorified in it. The majority were horrified by it.

The only safe place to hide during the riots was the Job Centre.

Out of touch judges. Religious hate towards the English. Riots, Arson, Looting. Human rights. Asylum, immigration, terrorism. Crime is rife law is on the side of criminals, yobs, stabbings, asbo’s. Traditions are worthless, God help us! Five star prisons.

Petrol prices, congestion charges, emission charges, sliding scale road tax charges, hospital parking charges, traffic jams, unnecessary road works, speed cameras, mobile radar traps, traffic wardens, clampers, carbon tax.

House prices, rip-off‘s, council tax, road tax, stealth taxes, overpriced and overcrowded filthy late trains, NHS, MRSA, jobs worth’s, rain, gloom, doom, Identity theft, data protection you are having a laugh the government is giving out your information big time the mandarins might as well post all your details on the web.

Costa’s The Big Sell

You should note that any potential property purchase that you make in Spain is that everybody involved in selling the property to you will promise you all that you want to hear. They will confirm ‘verbally’ every concern that you have is not a problem.

Do you know that buying an off-plan property is a high risk investment? The day after you have paid your full deposit and signed the contract becomes the day that all communication will cease unless of course you enquire about upgrading your purchase. The wait for your dream home and your troubles are only just beginning

Once you have signed at the notary will be the last time you have smile on your face. This is the period when you start looking for the translated part in the contract about building licences, First Occupation Licences, the completion date and refunds and compensation. Did you get a bank guarantee for your deposit? You did! Have you read the Terms & Conditions?

They will not exist in your favour because the translation of the contract from Spanish to English is not quite as accurate as you might think, and had you asked for a full and proper translation this would have cost you much more money through your lawyer, then the actual interpretation of these clauses is very difficult even for your lawyer to understand the implications of the terminology and abusive clauses. This would require a court case and judgment to establish the correctness of any clause that would need a professor of Spanish contract law to argue on your behalf.

The developers and their teams of lawyers know every trick and delaying tactic available to them right up to the court steps, including some real crackers for example being granted protection from the court against creditors.

The outcome for these poor souls who fall foul of this abuse is not encouraging. Get in the queue for your court hearing. The result will be so far into the future, the stress would have either broken your will to live or you will be on a murder charge. You will have an advantage here, simply buy yourself a DeLorean.

Developers have no respect for you, your lawyer, the Town Hall, or the court or their soon to be ex-mates the Mayor and planning officer in the area you have purchased.

Be very aware that many lawyers here in Spain get caught out when they purchase off plan property in Spain for their own investment or new home. Many like you will still be waiting three or more years after the original completion date to hear something and be able to move in.

The plans you are provided with can be varied by the developer, you will be constantly told they can only make changes to improve your purchase. When you eventually get into your property to do the snagging you suddenly realise that instead of the 90 square metres of build you only have 70 square metres, your pet rabbit has a bigger spare bedroom in its hutch. The terrace is only a postage stamp facing in the wrong direction with an air conditioning unit filling most of the space.

A good tip for you is put aside a wad of euros for a builders clean, once you get those keys this will be necessary.

Then the quality of the materials used are not up to the standard you were told, the apartment is damp and mould is up all the walls, the gardens are a mess and the swimming pool leaks. If someone sneezes the electricity breaks down and the community roads subside along with the drains which give you a real flavour of the Spanish fresh air! No snagging has been done and the workmanship is so poor even a cowboy builder would be ashamed.

The tropical gardens resemble a rubbish tip, or you suddenly notice that it does not matter how much water is put onto the flowers and palms they wilt and die due to the contaminated soil, which is a nice lime cross clay and cement mix with assorted chemicals and rubbish and rubble thrown in for good measure. How come the weeds flourish in these swamp conditions? Yes! swamp because the rain will not drain away after storms. Another good tip is replace the irrigation system that the constructer has installed with a system that functions correctly this will save your community thousands of euros in the long term.

A big excuse that you will have ringing in your ears from the developers agent on site is that those lovely pictures in the brochures of your purchase with landscaped tropical gardens showing bowling green grass, twisting pathways decorated with flowers, and swimming pools with decking surrounds adorned with sun beds and parasols are only an ‘Artists Impression’ . This is a term you will hear a lot when you or your community start complaining about the awful condition you have been handed the development.

In Marbella alone there are over two hundred developments with buyers who are refusing to sign their title deeds in the hope that the courts will free them of their contracts.

Purchasing a re-sale property you have a risk of your land being appropriated. Land grab is alive and kicking all over Spain not only by developers but also the Town Hall and Mayor are finding this law a useful tool in you helping to improve the amenities and services for your own home by you paying for the infrastructure for a new development and also the access which is planned to go through the middle of your own property.

Yes the new road right past your front door, along with the new street lights and electricity supply that the previous owner has been complaining about for years. The new sewage and water supply which is planned to go between your finca and your swimming pool, and of course the six rubbish bins for the new community will be positioned in the entrance to your drive, you have after all been asking the Town Hall for rubbish banks for some time now.

You start recalling phrases like ‘That avocado farm all around you can never be built on.’ But do not be surprised if this land gets burnt down by the new owner who just happens to be a developer having a barbecue evening.

‘This land as far as you can see is protected it is all National Park.’ Just wait until you see the revised local plan after a new party is elected, this plan will only be available for you to look at after it has been passed, prior to it being made public this document is stamped in red “Top Secret developer’s eyes only” and “Priority one clearance only.” The only person with this clearance is the Mayor who must sign the First Occupation Licence. Just remember these words ‘Is this rustic land?’ ask the question.

Your memory recollects something you have read in the newspapers. You are sure that M.E.P. guy Michael Cashman from Brussels who was on Eastenders has informed the Spanish Junta through a European delegation that this is unlawful and it is against your and many thousands of other wronged owners human rights.

Your thoughts start to get into gear now you remember Trevor McDonald doing a TV program and this “Land Grab” practice was roundly condemned they had many depressed property owners in Valencia area or was it Alicante talking about their properties being bulldozed right up to the back windows, but surely they did not mean down here on the Costa del Sol……did they?

If you are starting to experience cold sweats at this point or a tingling sensation in either of your arms please do not read on, also another sign of an impending health problem is insane giggling to yourself. Close this rant immediately.

The costs for fighting for your “rights” should clear out your bank account just paying the lawyers. If you survive the initial shock at this point you are advised to make sure you have a Spanish Will.

Perhaps your views have disappeared from a beautiful vista to a lovely apartment complex watching you sunbathe on the bit of terrace you have left beside your swimming pool along with building site rubble that has never been cleared since the developer left. This will remain a blight on your life until the community raises the funds to remove this mess with a special levy payment through the community fees.

The devaluation of your property will require you to go cap in hand to all the family members you have been running around the tourist spots for the previous few years for some financial help to fight your cause to finance the first fifty percent down payment to your lawyer, this is the period of time you will seek to get some equity out of the property to survive.

This is when the pressure really starts to tell on your usual calm manner when you find out your property is virtually worthless and it is not possible to re-mortgage in the present circumstances what with the credit crunch and the euro dropping in value against the pound. The papers are full of doom and gloom about developers all over the place finding it difficult to finance the projects on the investment land they have bought. As you begin to wonder what living in the campo in a caravan is like your blood pressure zooms into the stratosphere.

 

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About Umpius

I retired and moved to the Costa del Sol in 2003 and I now live in the Jalon Valley which is in the Costa Blanca area.
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One Response to Spain here we come

  1. Andréia says:

    i hope you keep posting those wonderful articles, thanks a lot.

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