This is one of a series of articles, ‘warts and all’ experienced by my partner and I purchasing a property in Spain which took us on a two year roller coaster journey. They are published to inform others embarking on a similar life changing path.
This article specifically covers the viewing trip. A bit of background. My partner and I had decided to purchase a property in Spain. Speaking to some friends they were also thinking of buying a property and suggested we join them at a property exhibition in Birmingham.
To cover more ground, we split from them promising to meet at lunchtime and recommend suitable stands to visit. They were late back however and a phone call revealed that they had brought an ‘off-plan’ property on the Costa Del Sol, west of Malaga, and were just finishing the necessary paperwork.
Frankly we thought them to be deranged to make such a quick decision. However, they knew that area of Spain well. We were more cautious. However upon their recommendation we visited the same stall and hey presto we had booked a viewing flight to Spain before you could say ‘tapas!’. I must say though that the thought of a cheap weekend in Spain was quite appealing though. A weekend trip cost £95 each.
A few weeks later we landed at Malaga airport and were very impressed with a warm greeting from the sales person, Virgina. We were even more impressed that she knew our names. Our personal escort was very friendly and we were whisked away from the airport in a nice BMW company car.
No time to book into our hotel and freshen up, we were driven straight to various developments to view properties for sale. We did stop for a brief lunch, on the company. I did the wrong thing by drinking a large glass of wine. The day was warm and I must admit I soon nodded off in the back of the car, much to the annoyance of my better half!
After looking at lots of properties and developments at both ends of our financial spectrum, we viewed a development we liked at Casares Del Sol approximately 25 minutes from Gibraltar. It seemed to have everything we were looking for. It promised luxury apartments with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a high tech kitchen, set amidst tropical gardens with 7 swimming pools. Being British we maintained the ‘stiff upper lip’ deciding to mull over the prospect during the course of the evening.
We were then booked into a smart hotel on the seafront in Marbella, all part of the package. By the next morning following a romantic dinner washed down by lovely wine, (wine in Spain is very cheap), we were convinced that the development was for us.
We did however visit some other developments with Virginia so as to be completely sure. There was no pressure placed upon us, the developments almost selling themselves. Virgina gave us lot's of help in seeing the various benefit's of exactly where to buy on a development. Consider for example things as views, noise levels, access as we get older (lift, stairs etc), proximity to pool, rental opportunity
What drew us to this development was that is was a mere 1 minute from the sea by car, 5 minutes to restaurants and shops, and 10 minutes to mountain villages. It promised to have stunning golf, mountain and sea views, and was, it had everything we were looking for.
We signed the purchase form and parted with 4,000 Euros, (good old Barclaycard). The lovely Virginia treated us to a slap up meal at Casares. Casares is a lovely traditional white washed mountain village whereby our development gets it's name. At this point she felt more like a new friend than a sales representative. As you can imagine we had many questions regarding what was to happen next and she was very patient answering them all.
We returned to the UK excited with dreamy thoughts of spending many holidays in our home in the sun. Virgina kept in touch occasionally informing us to progress on the development and even sent occasional photographs of our plot.
My advice is to carefully select which company you book your viewing trip with. Ask where you will stay during the visit, and of course what is the cost. Finally ask lot's of questions, compile a list before you go and get each question answered.
Our apartment at Casares Del Sol is now complete and we have enjoyed several trips there this year.
If the articles are enjoyed and deemed beneficial they might even grow into a book, so please do provide feed back. . . If we sell enough we can might even be able to pay off the mortgage!
Kevin Gale owns Click Rent Stay in which he advertises his Spanish Holiday Villa along with hundreds of other similar properties.