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Why Invest In Spanish Property?

July 16th, 2007

Traditionally amongst Britons, Spain has been the most popular foreign country in which to purchase property. In fact this trend has been followed by other European nations such as Germany and Sweden to the extent that of all houses sold in Spain, one third are sold to non-Spaniards.

The are so many reasons why Spain has become a favourite not only for property investors but for people wishing to buy Spanish property in order to relocate to Spain. Notably of the three nations that invest the most highly in Spanish property, UK, Germany and Sweden, the climate in their home nations is certainly not as temperate to that of Spain and the excellent Spanish weather is an oft cited reason for relocating to Spain, as well as a large driving factor of the thriving tourist industry. Although one should not only think of year round sun. If you were to visit the north of the country such as the Basque region you would encounter a climate that is more akin to the UK with frequent rain. At the furthest end of the scale you are also able to enjoy winter sports in the country, as there is a thriving winter sports scene.

Asturias, Spain

It is this contrast that makes Spain so appealing.

Culturally, Spain is a friendly and relaxed country. The manana attitude that is pervasive amongst the Spanish can be a very appealing attitude for those wishing to distance themselves from busy city living. Although it can prove to be slightly frustrating when, for example, you need the services of a builder or plumber.

The infrastructure within Spain makes it very easy for foreign visitors to access the various regions with numerous international airports serving the country well. We will be including an indepth post detailing the numerous Spanish airports and the supporting areas later in the series.

Prices for property can be incredibly low compared to typical western standards in the more far flung areas such as Extremadura or Asturias and it is possible to pick up a small farmhouse in need of some restoration for as little as €25,000. Alternatively, buying a property in one of the established areas such as the Costa del Sol could cost millions.

Costa del Sol

Ultimately, you can get from Spain as much as you are prepared to put in. If you are prepared to do the research you can still pick up a property bargain and there are still many good off plan deals that are worth pursuing. You should note, however, that as the market it maturing it is more difficult to make a profit on Spanish property, as there are now large numbers of professional and amateur property developers that have been fuelled by media stories of how to make millions from property. This is certainly possible, but you should brace yourself that as the Spanish market is cooling down, you might have to wait that little but longer before you make your first million.

Spanish Property Series

July 13th, 2007

As part of a new series of blog posts for the overseas property investor we will be focusing our attention on the Spanish property market.

Spain is an incredibly attractive proposition in terms of purchasing property due to the excellent infrastructure, mature tourist industry, great weather and laid back lifestyle. The investment potential is not as high as it once was, however – the industry leading investment potential of a few years ago were clearly unsustainable. On the flip side, as the price of property in Spain is not increasing at an alarming rate, it maybe possible to pick up a property for a lower price than you might expect.

Our series on the Spanish property market will evaluate the merits of Spain for property investment, the prices you may expect to pay, and the various popular geographic areas for property investment along with more up and coming areas where larger gains maybe possible.


So you have bought your dream Spanish property. What now?

July 9th, 2007

You have made your Spanish property purchase and the deal has been done, but you mustn’t forget the final preparations necessary before you embark on your new life in the Spanish sun.

Much of the advice in the forthcoming list is common sense, however, it would be wise to use it as a handy reference guide to ensure that you haven’t forgotten any important details.

Checklist before moving to Spain

  • Get estimates from Spanish removal companies for transporting your belongings from your country of origin to Spain.
  • Arrange for all postal mail to be redirected to your new Spanish address
  • Take some Spanish language lessons (if you haven’t started already)
  • Ensure that all outstanding domestic bills are paid and up to date and that utilities such as gas, electric and water are disconnected if appropriate.
  • Contact your local council and inform them that you will be moving out of the country and that the electoral register will need to be updated appropriately.
  • Notify financial providers of your move. These can include banks, insurance brokers, pension fund managers, etc.
  • Don’t forget to hand your notice in at work, unless you don’t mind a very long commute


Eco-housing around the world

June 25th, 2007

Location, location, location goes the old adage when considering purchasing property. Of course this is one of the determinate factors in being able turn a profit from property. However, there is an increasing worldwide movement amongst property developers and individuals alike to produce energy efficient, carbon free homes. This can only be applauded and one should certainly add the environmental impact of your new property to the traditional factors when purchasing.

Around the world?

Certain countries are certainly taking the lead when it comes to environmentally friendly homes. There are prominent movements towards environmental matters when building property is concerned in most developed nations and encouragingly the promulgation of such developments are being entertained at local and national government level. Entirely carbon free housing is certainly in its infancy, certainly at a mass production level, but with continued public support fuelled by increasing media interest it is hoped that more developments will continue to crop up globally.

Carbon free in the UK

The UK is one country that is taking the lead with the introduction of eco-housing and the government can at least take some credit in this aspect with thier recent announcement of legislation that will dicatate all new housing will need to be carbon neutral by the year 2016. Whether this is a realistic target or the legislation will survive possible governmental shifts in focus and party politics is another matter, but it is certainly a worthwhile and enviable target.

To mark the new legislation, the first carbon neutral property development was unveiled by Sheppard Robson in conjunction with Arup and Kingspan Off-Site named “The Lighthouse”.

The Lighthouse

The property is a two bedroomed 2.5 storey dwelling which makes optimum use of natural light and sustainable energy technologies that not only help provide the carbon neutral status but also can help to lower heating costs.

The Lighthouse Facts

KEY

1. Wind catcher, for summer ventilation
2. Solar array at back of house for hot water and electricity
3. High-level of wall insulation
4. Biomass boiler

Resources

Sheppard Robson

Offsite2007

BBC

Earthsong Eco-Neighbourhood in New Zealand

The Earthsong Eco-Neighbourhood is located in Waitakere City, Auckland, New Zealand and can claim to be the first develpment of environmentally friendly homes in the country.

Earthsong

There are still properties available in the development with technical specifications and pricing available.

Prefab House Design in the US

For sheer beauty as well as an environmentally friendly design, we would recommend you look at the LivingHomes site. Here is an example of the calibre of their design -

Living Home

Obviously the advantage of prefabricated design is the fact that you are not artifically constrained by the geographic location of the development. If you have the land, you can build, and have your bespoke designed property located where you wish (subject to planning permission).

The property is not cheap, but you would be buying a stylish and eco-friendly property.

Additional Links to Environmentally Friendly Property

Australia

EcoHomes

Eco Dezign Homes

Eco Habitats

Canada

Eco Log Homes

Netherlands

EcoBoats

UK

Great Bow Yard

BedZED

Sherwood Energy Village

Green Moves

Earthship Brighton

The Findhorn Eco Village

US

Green Homes For Sale

Eco Dream

Environmental House Plan

Calearth Eco Dome

Most Expensive Cities to Buy Property

May 9th, 2007

Illuminating new research from Knight Frank/Citi Private Bank has discovered that London is officially the most expensive city in the world in which to buy property. London has fended off traditionally expensive cities such as New York, Tokyo and has even outstripped prices in Monaco.

The research suggests that pricing for £1 million plus homes has been fuelled not only by wealthy foreign individuals (59% of the luxury property market in London) but also by the large City bonuses on offer.

The top 20 most expensive cities to buy a property (£ per square foot) are -

London
2,300
Monaco   
2,190
New York
1,600
Hong Kong
1,600
Tokyo   
1,100
Cannes   
940
St Tropez
930
Sydney   
820
Paris   
790
Rome   
780
Moscow   
770
Venice   
670
St Petersberg
650
Florence   
540
Geneva   
500
Madrid   
470
Dublin   
470
Milan   
420
Birmingham   
420
Mumbai   
410


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