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A description of life in Pruna, a village in the Andalusian mountains

The delightful Spanish village of Pruna and all the facts and fancies you need to know so as to enjoy Pruna to the full

The running costs of a home in Pruna
17 August 2017 @ 16:35

Well this blog post has caused a bit of stir believe it or not! My frugality and honesty has been called into question. Simply put, if you want to eat and drink out regularly, drive hundreds of miles to get your British frozen ready meals, watch Sky with your Broadband, also have a landline, a mobile contract, run a car, buy non seasonal, non local goods, then you you will spend much much more than I do.

But without these things, how much does it cost to live in an Andalucian village? What are the price differences? Just what are the bills you can expect to have to pay? These are questions that we must all consider before we plan a move abroad. And note I say village, not a Habitacion with community fees and piped in water, a working Spanish village with it's own water source.

When I tell people back in the UK what I pay for council tax they are astonished, 160 euros a year! And the rubbish gets collected daily except on Sundays. And the roads are fine, the schools look great, the whole area is well maintained.

For some reason my electricity bill is always the same, 70 euros every two months, 35, euros a month. My water and waste water bill is 13 euros every two months, unless I have topped up my plunge pool, in which case the extra 10,000 litres adds an extra forty euros to the usual bill. We are lucky in that Pruna, being an old village, has water supplied by a mountain spring, so the council just cleans it and pumps it. In areas where the water has to piped in the water bills can far higher (another plus is that you drink Pruna water straight from the tap). 

I also get some random bill for 53 euros every summer, something to do with property tax.

One delivered load of olive wood for the woodburner, lasts most of the winter and costs 50 euros, but lets splash out and say two loads so 100 euros. And the gas canisters used for the hob and oven cost 15 euros and lasts a year, I don't use the oven in summer (too hot) and in winter I use the oven part of the woodburner to bake. I have an electric emersion heater, not a gas boiler so only need the one canister. 

Add that all up and divide by twelve gives you a running cost of about 70 euros euros a month.Oh, and I pay eight euros a month for Broadband so that makes less than 80 euros a month covers all utilities and regular bills. In the UK it would cost me far far more.

But if you live in the countryside and have to have your water delivered then yes, 75 euros a month for water will be your bill. And if you live on a Habitation then you will have to add community fees, which not a cost when living in a real village.

And if you want all the sky channels and the ability to play World of Warcraft in HD with no buffering you will have to pay more, in fact much more than in the UK. But I don't need that, I use a Spanish aeriel and only watch Spanish TV. No online computer games, but my eight euros package allows for YouTube with no problem and all my social media sites plus all my writing work (which includes having to manage a hosting system).

So when people are posting and messaging me that I am deluded, and that theirs costs 55 euros a month, it only shows the choices they have made, and we are all allowed choices. My broadband does not come with a phone line, it does not provide EnglishTV, it is just broadband. And the photo below shows the advertisment for this eight euros a month service.

Now I accept that I run a tight household, air conditioning is for emergency use only (ie, when my husband is in the garden and doesn't know it is on). I don't pay for any English TV channels, my TV is the Spanish equivalent of freeview and there is no license fee. My broadband just manages with YouTube and emails and Facebook, my copywriting work, (and writing this blog). I rarely eat out, I don't socialise with the ex pats in any regular 'bar' based way. So I save money by living here because a simpler life involves spending less money. But I live a simple life in the UK as well, so it can be compared and I can manage on less money in Spain while enjoying a better lifestyle.

There is an additional cost to living here, it is the cost of charity, of donating to a better future for the village and it's children and animals. I have spent hundreds of euros on neutering cats! And I pay a monthly amount to the council by direct debit to fund a local child's music lessons. I always buy local lottery tickets and raffle tickets, and when a neighbour's baby is born, or there is a 'Communion', then a gift of money is always welcome (and accepted with grace). Remember there is hardly any benefits available for Spaniards, hardly any welfare net, so a little generosity goes a long way. However that is voluntary and therefore not a bill as such, but is something you might wish to be aware of.

In a village I could manage on just a state pension, I really could, but on the coast? My lifestyle would have to be very carefully budgeted, that 50% more on every coffee, every beer, every ice cream, soon adds up. 

However it would be a mistake to move to a village because it is cheaper than the coast, if the coast is really what you want! I see many people who would be far happier in a studio flat in Fuengerola than a three bed village house, but the lure of the house, for the same price, won them over. And in the same vein if you want authentic Spain you are not going to get it in a flat in the middle of a resort. So decide what you want, and go for it.


Like 3


harry said:
20 August 2017 @ 10:48

thank you very much for your insight into village life,i am on a basic state pension are you saying that i could live there on a pension inclusive of paying for a rental
regards harry

Lizy said:
20 August 2017 @ 14:44

John Pendlebury, was there any need to be so rude? Perhaps a course on good manners?

harry said:
20 August 2017 @ 16:01

thank you for your reply,it is good to have somebody confirm that it is not impossible to live in spain on that amount,my needs are very simple and i would not like to arrive in spain under the pressure of having to source an income,i have always believed in charity and giving and that brings communities together,i may not be able to give cash but i am sure i can use my skills as a carpenter to make a donation.i am coming to spain late september to view potential properties including 1
that may offer a rent reduction in lieu of completing unfinished
works.well thank you once again,regards harry

Stellab said:
20 August 2017 @ 17:12

Hi Christine
Thank you very much for the info, its good to know the facts - even if they are different depending on where you live in Spain.
I am planning on spending this winter in rural spain...maybe an hour inland, so I hope that a benefit of wanting a peaceful surroundings will be that the costs are lower.

JOHN - REALLY.... no need to be so rude, why would Christine lie? What has she got to gain by lying? If you cant say something nice, then dont say anything! Or just state the facts of your outgoings....maybe you could pick up some tips from Christine about living a little more frugally :-)

moonbeam said:
21 August 2017 @ 12:04

Dear Harry, Whatever you do don´t burn your bridges in the UK just yet. If the UK ends up being a non-EU country, UK residents will have to apply for non-EU resident visas, unless there is some reciprocal agreement both ways between the EU and the UK - which at the moment the UK is being difficult over and insisting that EU citizens will have to have visas to live in the UK and meet certain criterias. In that case Spain will not be able to offer better terms (ie non-visa status) to UK citizens than EU citizens are offered in the UK.

At present the requirements for a non-EU resident visa is proof of income of 2130 euros per month, and compulsory private health insurance.

UK citizens will not be able to continue living illegally in Spain either, as there will be controls of UK passports at the borders once again. It will be back to holiday length stays only.

Hopefully, it will all turn out ok in the end after discussions, but nobody knows the outcome for sure.

Wishing you all the best and hope you find what you are looking for, but please bear in mind that what is enjoyed and taken for granted now could disappear in the future. So keep a backup plan.

christineinseville said:
21 August 2017 @ 14:55

I agree with Moonbeam about always keeping a foothold in the UK. I see many people trapped here. But the problems are more likely to arise after Brexit, and those who move to Spain before Brexit should retain their rights to remain. The below us from the Telegraph, and the url/address is also there:

House of Commons Library says that "withdrawing from a treaty releases the parties from any future obligations to each other, but does not affect any rights or obligations acquired under it before withdrawal."

In other words, Brits who have already exercised their right to live in EU states can expect to keep that right after Brexit. One important point though: this only applies to people who have started expat life in the EU before Brexit.

After Britain leaves, Brits’ ability to live and work in EU nations will depend on new agreements the UK negotiates with those nations.

harry said:
22 August 2017 @ 20:37

thank you for your thoughtful response to my enquiry re,living in spain,i agree it is wise to have options and a back up plan
in life changing decisions but sometimes you just have to go for it,
and now the politicians are talking about a transitional period which could take years to finalise,by that time i would have been in sunny spain and might have grown a magic money tree
regards harry

moonbeam said:
22 August 2017 @ 21:43

With such an upbeat outlook you are certainly equipped to make the best of life - good for you! And as Christine has demonstrated it is possible to live well and happily in the country without spending a fortune.

Jane said:
22 August 2017 @ 22:48

Hi, I'm visiting and staying in pruna in September and wondered if anyone knew of a swimming pool for public use, or a pool owned by someone who is happy for people to pay to use for a daily swim? I've heard that the municipal pool is closed in September so was looking to see if there were any alternatives? Thankyou for any guidance you can offer

christineinseville said:
23 August 2017 @ 00:23

Hi Jane, there are two pools that will still be open even when the school holidays end. (The municipal open air pools in villages only open during the school holidays) the Camping site at Pueblo Blanco has a nice sized pool, with Sun beds, that it permits non residents to use. This is in Olvera, on the road to Campillos, and is on your left with a palm tree lined drive. You pay at the reception.
Your other option is Penon, which is on the road from Pruna to Algamitas. Also on the left, it has a huge Amphora as its sign. You drive up a long and winding road, and pay at reception, and leave your passports. Costs four euros. Then you drive up to the pool. There is a lovely cafe bar there. Private message me if you want any more information (there are other places to swim that are not pools)

Googy2 said:
23 August 2017 @ 12:14

Hi All

We are looking to come to Spain for an extended Hoiday, Initially for 1 Month with option to extend to 3-6 month. Any suggestions on long term rentals, we have two small dogs so dog friendly a must and also wifi needed. Not too far form coast and would like small house/villa with garden if poss. Any recommendations welcome. Patrick

Peter said:
24 August 2017 @ 10:37

Good morning,
Thank you for the most informative information it has been very helpful.
We bought a house eight years ago in Castril Andelucia and have renovated it to a very high standard.We have our house for sale in the UK and as soon as its sold we will move to Spain.
I understand that costs can vary from town to town but over the last eight years we have kept a sharp eye on costs in our village and it has remained static which pleases my wife and I.
We have lived in four countries so know the pitfalls of moving but the comments on been a resident or illegal does raises a concern as I am not sure yet how to address this issue. I was under the impression on could live three months in Spain at a time without registering and been legal it looks like I must investigate this further.
I was born in Northern Rhodesia, moved south and have lived in England for sixteen years, one of my most prized possession is my British Nationality which I was granted only two years ago.
I will always remain a British subject and never cut ties with England, Spain's relaxed village life and sunshine is the attraction and like you I pray my wife and I can settle into the Spanish way of life. I fully agree to integrate and be of use to the community is a way forward something we intend to do. Regards Peter

Anne Stevens said:
11 January 2018 @ 02:10

I have lived in Australia for 47 years and am returning to the UK. I have a British Passport as well as an Australian one. I would like to live for a while in Spain (not the summer months). A true Spanish village not an urbanization. I would like to rent a room and would appreciate if someone could tell me how much this would cost. I want to live the authentic life and learn Spanish. Hope someone can help make my wish come true. Anne

Christine Jones said:
24 September 2018 @ 15:08

I have bought a property in Olvera with a view to retiring there eventually, but for the time being must see my teenage daughter through school in the UK and into an independent young adult life. At the time of purchase I had no funds left to furnish it so managed to rent it partially furnished. Unfortunately my Tenant has had to go back to the UK due to ill health. My place is now empty and I'm wondering if anyone out there might be interested in renting it. It's in the old part of Olvera but has been refurbished to a high standard, has lovely views from the terrace and has all the basics. It would sleep 4 people comfortably. If anyone is interested or knows of anyone who might be, please contact me on +0044 07522 110023 or Thank you. And thanks to Christina for such an informative blog! Kind Regards, Christine

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