Success Stories – Joy and David Stevens, Marbella.
Joy and David wanted to buy a property in Spain which they could eventually retire to and would offer a great alternative lifestyle for them and their families. Leaving things to the professionals meant the process went smoothly and their first week in their property was magical.
What made you buy property in Spain?
We are 10 years from retirement and wanted somewhere to holiday, with the long-term plan of spending longer periods over there once we have retired.
We also have three teenage children who are growing up fast and wanted somewhere they could enjoy as they get older.
How did you find the property buying process in Spain?
We spent a lot of time researching on the net and going to property shows. We would say do as much research as you can. There are some good companies out there like Total Buying Abroad who provide advice and recommendations. We think we are good judges of character but when spending our life savings, it was good to have a starting point and some recommendations.
Did you make any mistakes when buying your villa in Spain?
Not really but we were worried at one time. When we agreed the sale price and paid the deposit we decided not to fix the exchange rate with our currency specialist. We took a gamble as we were hoping that the rate would go up in our favour. It actually dipped soon after and we spent the next month before completion panicking and obsessively checking the currency rates. Luckily for us it recovered and we ended up not far from the rate we got when we paid our deposit but if we did it again we would fix the exchange rate to avoid the stress.
Is there anything that you did well when buying your villa In La Zenia?
We had a really good English-speaking Spanish lawyer who sorted out everything for the property purchase, as well as sorting out the NIE number, utility bills and our wills. It took all the stress out of the situation and meant that when we arrived at the villa for the first time after completion it was all ready to go, which made our first week magical. It cost a little bit more but we felt the money was well spent. The estate agent offered us a lawyer who seemed good but we wanted to source our own as we had heard they should be independent and we wanted to get it right.
Is a Spanish villa a good investment?
In life terms, yes. We hope we and our families will enjoy it for many years to come. In financial terms we’re sure it will take a good few years of growth to get back the 12% we had to pay on top of the purchase price for fees and tax’s but we don’t intend to leave for many years. We think we have bought in a good location so think it will be a steady bet.
Snap shot of advice for buying in Spain?
Do your homework, don’t rush in, follow advice and don’t be put off with horror stories as it is worth it in the end!