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Green Lemons are Limes

The adventure that moving and living in Spain has continually been. Tragic events that have turned everything upside down, house moves and running a bar in the Spanish countryside.

Let it begin
26 July 2019 @ 15:52

Let it begin


It was time to start if we wanted to be in Spain before our Daughter sat her stat exam we needed to make headway.

With Dad doing well, we felt able to start putting our plans into action.

Flights were booked and off we went to house hunt.

We knew nothing, we were greener than a green lemon or lime!

Paperwork was a nightmare mainly because we listened to the wrong people and got really rubbish advice. 

So following blindly like you do when you are under the impression someone else knows what they are talking about, we travelled the 30 km to the town where we would meet and pay a lady to get us our NIE (tax identification) number. It was bitterly cold that day, in one of the towns in Spain that has the most extreme weather, loads of snow in the winter and burning hot in the summer. We waited and waited and waited a bit more, we were too early the office in the police station wasn’t yet open.

When at last we got into the office for what should have been a straight forward meeting, it became clear it wasn’t going to happen. 

The lady who gets people NIE’s for a living seemed not to be known and her Spanish was a little better than mine, at this point mine was almost non-existent. We left with no NIE numbers, she still wanted to be paid though!

We decided to leave the paperwork for now and we had appointments booked to start looking for a house. I had been an estate agent for years in London and weirdly thought we would get the same sort of professionalism as I used to give, sadly I was mistaken. (please note there are very good estates agents out there, it was just unfortunate we didn’t meet any at this time!) 

We had two day’s in which to house hunt, we were looking with the same agent both days. He had the list of things we were looking for, I tend to be rather organised when it comes to house hunting.

Both days went pretty much the same way, we saw loads of the countryside around where we were looking to live, which was lovely. The houses not so much, I wanted a house that needed work but we could live in whilst we did it, call me strange but to me, if a property hasn’t got a roof then it’s uninhabitable. Not according to this estate agent, but then he also told us that it never snowed in the area, whilst he was sat under a photo of the village in the snow. I was starting to have issues trusting him, not sure why! 

One of the properties, if the situation had been different, I would have bought, it was pretty much a ruin, hardly any roof and no way could you live in it, but it had bags and bags of character, views to die for and I loved it but totally impractical for our families needs. It was in the middle of no-where had no road or track to get to it, you had to park at the end of the nearest track and go on foot for about 10 minutes. It would be a total money pit and our pit was more like a puddle.

Our trip came to an end with no paperwork and no house, the plus was I got to see a lot of derelict building, I've got a bit of a thing for ruins.

Back to Blighty, we went and back to looking at property details on internet websites, I was shocked at how little information was given (property details have got better since then and laws have changed which has helped purchasers no end in the last twelve years). I was looking at properties and then realising we had viewed them already, the photo’s where taken in such a way that at first glance you would think they were different houses when you compared the photos to standing outside. Of course the agents want to show off a property to it’s best, however, sometimes we got a surprise. The price differences for the same property were mental sometimes as much as fifty thousand difference depending on the agent, turned out that this would be their commission, nice if you can get it.



Like 1


Mazo1952 said:
27 July 2019 @ 15:42

Adaix estate agents in Zafra. Professional and honest. Fernando speaks English really well and his wife is a solicitor. This couple are brilliant every problem we had just disappeared with Gloria and Fernando on the case. We went through many estate agents who took the money and were not helpful at all. It is hard but we spent a lot of years in Spain and the learning curve is always steep.

samm3333 said:
31 July 2019 @ 16:52

So pleased you found a good estate agent, there are some about. I agree the learning curve is steep, although I think we may have made our's even steeper for ourselves! Thank you for taking the time to comment Mazo1952

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