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The British are starting to buy again in Spain
10 October 2009 @ 17:23

The hoped-for green shoots of the economy in the UK were showing their heads in Birmingham last weekend, when thousands of people turned out for the “A Place in the Sun” exhibition held at the NEC. International property shows in the UK had been in the doldrums over the past months and some of the organsisers had gone into bankruptcy owing to the overall downturn in property sales everywhere, but “A Place in the Sun”, backed by the TV_programme of the same name, made a strong come-back at the NEC. The exhibition was a smaller one than in previous editions but had been well publicised, and visitors came flooding through the doors.

This was especially good news for Spain, confirmed to be the favourite destination of potential property-buyers. No fewer than 60 per cent of visitors indicated an interest in Spain, with France coming in a poor second despite its familiarity and geographical proximity to British buyers. Unlike in previous years, there was no “French village” area at “A Place in the Sun”, and Spain’s main competitors were the USA and Australia and New Zealand, which were offering immigration packages.

Surveys of the public attending the show indicated that many buyers have been waiting for the right moment, and are now ready to make the move, as prices are unlikely to drop any further. Asked why they were looking at Spain, they mentioned, as one would expect, the climate, the friendly people, and enjoyable holidays in this area in the past. Buyers were also aware of the problems now facing investors who had opted in the past for destinations less well served by the airlines. While flights to many of these have been reduced or scrapped altogether during the credit crunch, Malaga airport continues to be served by numerous airlines with dozens of flights every day to the UK

A programme of seminars accompanied the exhibition, dealing with such subjects as how to get a visa to move to the USA, fractional ownership of property, and “Has the market hit rock bottom?” The consensus on the last question was that although it is impossible to tell how low prices will fall, or predict when the market will pick up again, until the worst is over and the market is showing signs of growth, in most areas there is unlikely to be a better time to buy than right now.

The most popular of the seminars however was on the subject of “Emigrating to Europe”, with six talks over the course of the show commanding audiences much larger than anticipated. It was standing room only for many who wanted to hear advice and ask questions about relocating to another European country.

The seminars were conducted by a property journalist, the speakers being an international lawyer and an expert from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Stephen Jones, whose wide experience derives partly from his current position as British Consul in Malaga. His advice was wide ranging, from questions of vehicle licensing to health insurance, tax liability and transfer of British pensions abroad. He strongly recommended that new residents in Spain should register with the local “padrón” and that they try to learn some Spanish before making the move, in order to facilitate life in Spain and enjoy all that it has to offer. He was also insistent that before buying, it is advisable to rent for a few months to make sure of the suitability of the chosen location. Enthusiastic to the point of proclaiming Benalmádena to be his favourite of the many places he has lived, he reiterated the advice to anyone else thinking of living here to “do your homework before you come”.

From Sur in English



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Pedro said:
12 October 2009 @ 22:29

The Sur is a joke telling people lies about Spain and green shoots, the property prices have fallen in most areas but many agents are very keen to keep them up because of there income,the Sur never admitted the prices have fallen they were always hyping it up ( the market ), its a big problem trying to find out if your property is legal the paperwork does not mean its legal, in many cases the build quality is very poor and never worth the money and the legal system most of the time is a big joke, nearly all the the agents tell you a pack of lies to get your money, we really feel sorry for the people who fell into the trap and cutting the life line to escape. There are some people who have never had a problem with buying but not many, our buying was was very painless and a very good solicitor until we were selling and found out the council had entered the wrong property details under our name and for some time it looked like we were not the owners, but it was sorted in the end. All you can say about buying in Spain watch THE MINEFIELD AND BUYER BEWARE YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED

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