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EU Property Solutions- Experts in all Spanish property issues

EU Property Solutions offer professional assistance and advice in all areas of European property in particular, Spain. We can help provide strategies and solutions to solve problematic property issues, negotiate with lenders on debts, help reclaim lost deposits on unfinished developments and help with repossessions and mortgage arrears across Europe. We have offices in London, Belfast and Spain.

The history of the Spanish property market
22 January 2018

From bubble to boom

The Spanish property market has had a checkered past and is one that is characterized by booms and busts. At present, the market in Spain is looking noticeably healthier, with figures indicating that sales had soared in October 2017 and were up 28%. Things weren’t always looking so rosy for investors in Spain or those who owned a holiday home there though.

Read on for our recap of the history of the property market in Spain.

The property bubble

There have been a number of property bubbles in Spain, all of which are characterised by long-term increases in the price of property in the region. The most recent one took place between 1996 and 2008 and saw the prices grow at alarming rates.

Because of the global financial crisis that occurred globally between 2007 and 2008 that economists have described as the first financial crisis since the Great Depression, the price of property steadily began to fall again during the time that this was happening.

Adjustable mortgage rates during the bubble

A notable element of the Spanish real estate bubble is the fact that around 98% of the loans that were taken out during the bubble period were adjustable rate mortgages. These mortgages combine to form over 60% of the value of the Spanish GDP. This should give an indication that a lot of people owe a lot of money on their mortgages in Spain.

To compound the problem, as the crisis has erupted after 2008, people find that their interest rates have risen and so have their mortgage payments. Because of this, people that purchased property in Spain during the bubble are still dealing with the consequences of being saddled with debt which, for many, has lead to them finding themselves in negative equity.

What are things looking like now?

The property market in Spain in 2007, and while figures still suggest that things figures are still 39.8% below this level, there is significantly more confidence in the market at present. The property market in Spain remained strong throughout 2017 and it is thought that things will continue like this during 2018.

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How to overcome the loss of your holiday home
13 December 2017

How to overcome the loss of your holiday home

When you are forced to sell your home abroad, it can feel like letting go of a dream, and moving back home can be a challenge.While it’s easy to bury your head in the sand, it’s important to try and remain positive, so check out our tips on how to overcome the loss of your holiday home.

Keep busy

There’s no point in dwelling on things that can’t be changed, so when it comes to the loss of your home abroad, try not to spend too much time obsessing over what you’re missing out on and instead keep busy with things that you enjoy and make you feel happy. This could be meeting friends or going to the gym, but whatever it is, try to keep your mind from running away with you.

Get on top of your finances

If you’ve been forced to sell your home abroad because of financial complications, one of the best ways that you can make yourself feel better is to make a financial plan and stick to it. Whether this is to save some money each month or contribute to paying off loans, having an idea mapped out of what you need to do is going to make you feel much more proactive.

Do things that remind you of good times

Just because you have lost your home abroad, that doesn’t mean that you have to let go of all the good times you had and the fun things that you got up to. If you had traditions or things that you would do frequently in your holiday home, why not continue doing them back in your UK residence? Of course, some things won’t be possible, but if it was having a cooked breakfast every Sunday, eating outside a few times a week or having a games nights on the weekend with your friends, these things can easily be continued wherever you are.

Go on holiday

The attraction of purchasing a holiday home was being able to relax and enjoy a warmer climate, so why not continue doing this by going away every once in a while? It doesn’t have to be a big, expensive holiday, even just a long weekend in a sunnier part of the UK will perk you up.

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A buyer’s guide: Purchasing property abroad
07 December 2017

Despite their being levels of uncertainty in the property markets abroad, it seems that people are still keen to make their dreams of living in sunnier countries a reality, with popular spots like Spain and France seeing growth in both sales and prices.

When you buy a property abroad, you need to remember that it is a big step, so always approach the situation in a cautious and informed way.Before you sign any paperwork or start packing your bags, check out this guide to ensure that you avoid these common mistakes overseas buyers often make.

Never sign a contract you don’t understand

Of course, one of the biggest challenges that you will face when you buy a property abroad is the language barrier. When it comes to contracts, never sign something that you don’t understand. You should receive two copies of contracts, one in English, the other in the native language of the country that you are purchasing in. Have your translator look at them both to be sure that what is said is the same in each of the two before you put pen to paper.

Seek specialist advice

While you may think you have it all sussed out when it comes to purchasing property, things can vary greatly when you buy a property abroad, so to avoid landing yourself in a troublesome situation you should always seek out the help of professionals. Consult solicitors, surveyors, and architects who will be able to give you thorough advice and answer all of your questions. In Spain for example, it’s customary for some debts to be passed to the homeowner so a special search will need to be done to verify you aren’t buying someone else’s unpaid bills.

Ask the right questions when it comes to new builds

If you are buying from a developer, it’s crucial that you find out about their track record and how long they have been trading for before you go on with a purchase. It may also be useful to see some references from previous buyers, so ask if these are available. Obtaining all of this information will give you a clear indication of how reliable this developer is and whether or not you should invest in their property.

Consider the location

It’s true what they say, location is the most important factor when it comes to choosing a property, so make sure you give it a lot of thought before you decide where you’re going to move. If you’re planning on having visitors, you might want to think about how far the nearest airport it. You’ll also need to consider how close schools and other local facilities are if you have children.

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Pledges are being made that Brits with property in Spain will face no disruption once the UK leaves the EU, but how true is this?
30 November 2017

You can’t deny it, Brexit has caused a significant amount of turmoil, confusion, and worry for the people of Britain. Whether it be fears over immigration or trading between countries, the decision to leave the European Union has sparked fear and worry amongst millions.

It’s also led to a significant amount of speculation and doubt amongst those who own Spanish property. Many people are  asking the questions, “just how much will the vote to leave the EU effect me, my house and my prospects regarding continuing to live abroad?”

Despite this, statements have recently been made by officials in Spain to say that brits with properties in the country needn’t worry. But just how much can we trust this?

What are pledges being made?

The Spanish Foreign Minister Alfonso Dastis has spoken up in an attempt to reassure Brits with Spanish property. He stresses things will remain largely the same once Brexit takes effect. He made a statement saying that homeowners would face “no disruption”. This is largely down to a desire to continue to nurture the countries close relationship with the UK in terms of economic and social exchanges.

What is the current situation with Brits looking to move to Spain?

Spain is still the most popular choice for Brits looking for a summer holiday getaway to a sunny European country. Recent figures have revealed that the country accounts for the largest number of British citizens living abroad in the EU, at just under 390,000.  Brits endeavour to purchase at different times. Some placing a Spanish property purchase on their long-term retirement plan. On the other hand, couples and families with children seek holiday homes they can use throughout the year.

What could Brexit mean for Brits with Spanish property?

There is a lot of speculation that member states who are angered by Brexit, will put pressure on British expats to leave. Luckily those with Spanish property are protected by the EU’s right of free movement. This means that EU members are unable to bar or expel citizens of other EU states.

There are also concerns that Brits abroad may be barred from taking advantage of healthcare and other benefits, but this may not materialise, especially given the fact that the UK plays host to as many as three million EU nationals.

Whether the outcome of Brexit is good or bad for those who own European property. It’s important that everyone remains vigilant and stays prepared as Brexit continues to unfold. 

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Is now a good time to buy abroad? If so, where?
16 November 2017

When it comes to both selling and buying a property abroad, timing is everything.

With market fluctuations occurring and things constantly changing, you need to make sure you’re snapping up a property at the optimum time in order to ensure a good return on investment and to avoid losing out on hefty sums of money. Brits are still seeking solace in European holiday homes, but is now a good time to buy and if so, where? Check out our blog on some of the best and worst places to look if you’re wanting to buy abroad.


After a decade of uncertainty, Spain is still the most popular choice for Brits buying a property abroad. The volume of sales has been increasing quarter on quarter and there is a lot of confidence being recovered in the market. Properties remain affordable and are a lot cheaper than some of the neighbouring countries that Brits are flocking to, so it’s a good choice if you don’t have loads of money to splash out with.


If you are really looking to budget when it comes to buying a property abroad, Bulgaria is the best option for you. With its amazing scenery, beaches and mountains, it’s a great choice in terms of location and is also extremely affordable when it comes to the cost of living and of buying property. The average property price is £90,734, while utility bills will only set you back on average £70 a month. With interest increasing in the country, now may also be a good time to buy and sell as you may stand to make money.


France has always been another popular choice for Britons interested in buying a property abroad, with the French Riviera being a particular pull to the region.  The newly-appointed French President is committed to reducing taxes for property owners and simplifying the fiscal framework, all strong pulls for anyone about to invest in a home in France.

Generally, how are things looking when it comes to buying a property abroad?

While many markets are continuing to show signs of recovery, there is still a lot of uncertainty, especially given the fact that many of us don’t know what impact Brexit will have.

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What does the ‘weak pound’ mean for you and your property?
09 November 2017

What does the ‘weak pound’ mean for you and your property?

While the thought of owning a property in a sunny European country like Spain does sound extremely appealing, what doesn’t sound so great is the cost implications that go along with it.

If you pay any attention to currency rates you’ll probably have noticed that the cost of exchanging sterling for euros is seemingly higher as of late.

The pound has just entered an 11-month low at 1.11 euro and financial forecasters predict things could dip even further.

What does this mean for people who own property abroad?

Political uncertainty

One of the key factors contributing to the weak pound is of course Brexit. Ever since the UK voted to leave the European Union last June, the pound has been buying fewer euros.

This isn’t the only political element that is affecting the weakness of the pound, or, perhaps more accurately, the strength of the euro.

The French presidential election that took place earlier this year also produced a lot of political uncertainty, driving the euro lower.

However once, it became clear that Emmanuel Macron was likely to win, these concerns were forgotten, leaving the euro in a much stronger position.

Brexit has left us all feeling the pinch and facing financial uncertainty, especially for those who own property abroad as repaying mortgages could prove to be more difficult.

Strengthening euro

It’s important to understand that any event that takes place and makes the euro seem more attractive will have a direct, negative impact on the pound.

The euro has been boosted recently due to the market anticipation that the European Central Bank will start cutting back on its Quantitative Easing programme.

This has resulted in more euros in the Eurozone economy, which in turn has boosted performance. However, if the programme changes, pressure on the euro will lift which will change the game once again and could lead to the pound gaining back some of its lost ground.

Keeping interest rates low

In terms of investment, low-interest rates are usually seen as a negative as they deter foreign investors and make currency seem less attractive.

Many economic observers predicted that the Bank of England Monetary Policy Committee meeting last month would see action in favour of raising interest rates. This wasn’t the case, so a low-interest rate persists and the pound continues to decrease in value. Whether this changes as the political picture becomes clearer remains to be seen but, for the short term at least you’ll likely notice an increase in cost when buying or travelling overseas.

With interest rates across Europe rising, owning property could become more expensive.

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Repossession: everything you need to know
09 November 2017

The word repossession incites doom and a feeling of dread in all of us, particularly when we are talking about property that we own abroad.

You’ve spent time-saving and planning for your home purchase abroad, created amazing memories here with your family, only to be left in a situation where unfortunate events or poor finances have resulted in repossession.

So, what does repossession actually mean and what course of action should you take if you find yourself in a position where your holiday home is going to be repossessed?

What is repossession?

If you purchase a house using a mortgage, you will technically own the property but your mortgage lender will have a financial claim against it. If, for whatever reason, you are unable to make all of the payments your lender will attempt to get the money back from you, along with any other missed interest payments and fees. One of the ways that they may choose to do this will be through repossession of your property. The courts will have to decide that this is an appropriate course of action and will also decide whether bailiffs will be sent to evict you. Once a lender has taken control of your home, they will sell the property and recover all of the money that you owe, as well as additional costs that have built up.

Is the situation any different or worse with property abroad?

If you buy a property abroad and are subsequently required to borrow money abroad, lenders will be able to follow you home to the UK and take action against you through the UK courts.

What’s the worst case scenario?

Unfortunately, repossession can lead to bankruptcy in very bad circumstances. Foreign lenders have the right to follow you back home, which means moving back won’t always means you aren’t chased for outstanding payments.

What’s the best course of action?

There are a number of things you can do if you find yourself in a position where your home is going to be repossessed. Handing back the keys to the property and surrendering yourself is one course of action, but should only be taken in serious circumstances with proper advice and guidance to avoid bankruptcy.

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After the debt crisis and Brexit, is it too much trouble to lend to Brits who want to buy abroad?
03 November 2017

Brexit has further affected those looking to purchase a property outside of the UK.

Prior to the property bubble burst in 2007, Britons eager to snap up a home in the sun on the continent were given access to a huge range of mortgages. But over the last decade, the market has changed more than a little. Today, the debt crisis and the Brexit vote have made it more challenging to secure the finance you need to put your name on a stunning second home, whether it’s on the beautiful coast of Spain or in an authentic village in Greece.

The first factor to hit the lending market for Brits seeking to buy abroad was the debt crisis. In 2007, property prices were on the rise and developments were springing up across Europe in the most popular spots. But the financial crisis led to prices plummeting, planned construction work being halted, and left families unable to make their repayments. It meant that banks have become more cautious and risk-averse, making it more difficult to find a willing lender and in the wake of the crisis the number of Brits buying homes in Spain halved.

Uncertainty and the weakening pound means you’ll get less for your money, with prices rising by about 10% since the referendum. If you thought your budget would be stretched before Brexit, you’re going to face further pressure now and it could get worse when you consider currency fluctuations.

Coupled with the risk-averse attitude of the banks, the impact of Brexit is affecting Brits seeking to lend to buy abroad.

The good news is that there are still options for Brits looking to buy that dream holiday home and it can still be a worthwhile investment option if you pick out the right property. Whether you’re choosing to buy a property to turn into a family home or to rent out on the market, there are still lenders that are open to you.

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Own a house abroad? What is a property bubble?
03 November 2017

What is a property bubble and how could it affect you if you own a house abroad?

At present, the housing market across Europe is unstable and changeable. Prices in some European countries such as Ireland, Lithuania, and the Czech Republic are steadily rising, prompting fears that another property bubble could occur. You may have seen the phrase property bubble being splashed across different articles and headlines, but do you actually know what it means and how it may affect you if you own a house abroad?

Keep reading to find out exactly what a property bubble is and the implications of one setting in.

A property bubble is an increase in housing prices which is prompted by higher demand in the face of limited supply, which can take a long time to readjust and increase.

Speculators will enter the market in order to trade during a time of higher risk, hoping to capitalise on higher profit margins. This will further drive demand, which will at some point decrease as supplies simultaneously increase. This results in a sharp drop in prices, and the bubble bursts.

How will a property bubble affect you?

If you own property in a country within the EU that is in a property bubble, this could be interpreted as being a good thing. An increase in demand and prices may mean that, if you are looking to sell your property, you will be able to do so more easily and will benefit from a higher return.

However, it is important to remain vigilant regarding property bubbles, as once they burst prices will drop significantly, which could leave you in a situation where you receive less money than you hoped for your property. You may even be left in negative equity.

The Spanish property bubble

The property bubble in Spain burst in 2008, before which the country had been building more homes than the UK, Germany, and France combined.

Brits also forked out millions for holiday homes that were never built, but luckily many will be getting this money back as Spain’s Supreme Court opened the way for around 130,000 Britons to claim directly from banks.

If you have any questions about property bubbles or are concerned about selling your property abroad, get in touch with us and one of our friendly and highly-qualified staff will be happy to offer you assistance.

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What happens if you find yourself in a situation where your overseas property developer has gone bust?
03 November 2017

Often when you buy a property abroad, it will be a through a property developer, especially if you’re buying off plan.

If the market is unstable and values and demands are reducing, situations can arise where your property developer happens to go bust. We saw this in Spain a few years ago with many urbanizations left half finished. So, where does this leave you if your developer goes bankrupt or ceases trades while you’re in the middle of buying one of their properties?

What happens if you have completed your purchase on a property?

 If the sale has gone through, it is likely that the developer will have also sold other properties within the same complex. In this situation, the developer becomes your neighbor and is subsequently responsible for his fair share of the community fees.

However, because many developers now operate under the Administrative Receivership, it will be necessary for you to deal directly with the office of the Administrative Receiver and not with the developer themselves.

It may, therefore, be necessary to call a meeting with other members of the development community in order to protect your position regarding unpaid community fees. Once an agreement has been reached, the community will be able to enforce the unpaid fees as a debt against any incoming purchaser and then collect the unpaid balance.

What if you haven’t completed your purchase on a property?

If you haven’t completed your purchase but have perhaps paid your deposit or signed your Private Purchase Contract (PPC), it is likely that you will be in a situation where you will be purchasing the property outright once completion has been met. Legally speaking, there are two different types of creditors; secured and unsecured. The former will have registered charges against the development company’s assets by way of mortgages or other loans, whereas the latter will not.

Unfortunately, until a property is completed, a prospective purchaser who hs paid a deposit but not the amount of the property in full will be classified as an ‘unsecured’ creditor. This means that your rights to recoup the cash that you deposited with the development will come second to funds owed to ‘secured’ creditors.

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