Many people have dreams of purchasing a holiday home in a sunny location and Spain is a popular destination. It certainly sounds glamorous as you envision lazy days spent by the pool, early afternoon siestas, and copious amounts of fresh seafood and paella. However, while buying a holiday home is undoubtedly an exciting endeavour, there are many things to consider. Here we explore five top tips for anyone wanting to purchase a holiday home in Spain. Happily, Spain is open to foreign investment and usually processes purchases from the EU very quickly. They also offer foreign investors a special Golden visa program, whereby anyone who invests £500 000 in the Spanish property market will get a Spanish Visa.
If you are considering buying a holiday home in Spain, be it a lock-up-and-go apartment in Barcelona or a luxurious villa in the Alicante Region, consider the following tips.
1. Consider the primary purpose of the home
Before you even start looking for your dream Spanish property you need to think about what the main purpose of your holiday home will be. Are you looking to retire in Spain or spend extended holidays in the country throughout the year? Or is it instead an investment opportunity that you will rent out for most of the year? Knowing the reasons why you want to invest in property is the first step and will determine the size, location, budget, and other essential factors.
If you want to rent your Spanish property out, consider if you want long-term tenants or shorter rentals that will allow you to spend time at the property too. You will also need to consider whether you want to manage rental agreements privately or work through an estate agent. While they will take a commission, it could save you time and hassle if you are not always in the country,
Think about maintenance
Any homeowner knows the importance of good maintenance. Properties need to be maintained regularly to ensure that they are up to scratch and that they do not go to wrack and ruin. Unfortunately, many property owners underestimate just how much time is needed to maintain a property, and this can be even trickier to navigate if you are out of the country for extended periods of time. Depending on how often you will visit your home in Spain, you will need to consider if you have enough time to manage it or if you will hire a company to handle it on your behalf. When considering maintenance, depending on the property size and type, you will need to think about:
– Garden maintenance
– HVAC systems
– Clearing gutters
– Checking smoke or carbon monoxide detectors
– Plumbing checks
– Leak inspections
– Termite inspections
– Checking garage motors and springs
– General wear and tear
– Any exterior maintenance such as painting
As a rule of thumb, it is advised you spend between 1 and 3 percent of what you spent on the initial purchase of your home annually. Optimal maintenance can save you money in the long run and ensure that your home retains value and appeal.
When deciding on a holiday home in Spain, consider whether you have the time to maintain it properly or find a reputable company to outsource this task to if it is within your budget.
2. Location, Location, Location
Any property mogul knows that location is everything. When purchasing a property in a foreign country like Spain, it is crucial to research location options. Ask yourself these questions:
Do you want to be in a busy tourist hot-spot or more off the beaten track? Are you looking to rent out the property throughout the year, or is it solely for you and your family? Do you want outside space, or would you prefer a lock-up-and-go apartment? Would you like to be within walking distance of the beach, or are you happy to drive or take public transport?
If you’re planning to move to the country permanently, you’ll also need to consider job prospects, schools, recreation centres, shops, and transport. If possible, you’ll want to plan a visit to Spain so that you can get a feel for different locations and see the type of properties available. This will give you a better feel for other areas and help to inform a well-thought decision.
4. Take your time!
Buying a holiday home in Spain is no small decision, and it is important to take your time to suss out the local property market. While it can be tempting to jump at the first bargain you see, it’s essential to consider all the legalities and to make sure that the property is structurally sound. View as many properties as you can and work with a few agents to get the feel for what is out there.
5. Work with a trusted conveyancing lawyer.
This tip is perhaps one of the most vital parts of purchasing your holiday home in Spain. By working with a reputable lawyer, you can ensure that the contract is above board and legally sound. This is also important if any translations of documents are needed. Ensure that your chosen lawyer is registered with the bar – namely the Colegio de Abogados. For added safety, check that their unique registration number is registered with them. A trusted lawyer can also help you to arrange a survey of the property. While this is not a legal necessity, it is definitely advised and will ensure that there aren’t any significant defects with the home. These could cost you a great deal of money if they are unchecked. Knowing the condition of your home prior to purchase is always a good idea.
Buying a holiday home in Spain is undoubtedly exciting, but it’s important to follow the necessary legal steps to ensure that the property is in tip-top condition and structurally sound. Having clarity on how you will run the property, issues around rental, maintenance solutions, and location will also make your search an easier feat.
What’s your favourite location in Spain, and have you bought property here? Let us know!