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Retiring types? Not us!

Our trials and tribulations trying to buy a property in Spain - then our adventures in Jumilla, far from the costas, as we start our new life in Spain.

And the good news is?
16 June 2009 @ 19:16

John and I have been living in Jumilla for just over a year, and have had some amazing experiences during the last twelve months.  Where to start?  I suppose the beginning would be the best idea!

When we signed a rental contract in April 2008, it was in the expectation that we would move permanently to Jumilla after John retired two months' later, and that by the end of December we would be living in our new house on a golf development at Residencial Santa Ana del Monte, a few miles outside Jumilla.  We should have been living there since January 2008, however the builders were behind schedule although our agents told us there was nothing to worry about........!  Looking back we were a bit naive - no doubt many of you are now nodding your heads at that statement.

In May 2008 I received a text from Heather, a fellow buyer, saying that the developer San Jose had gone into voluntary administration.  We were on holiday in Spain at the time, so we looked for an internet cafe and logged onto the Eye on Spain community forum to try and get more information.  Unfortunately the bad news was true - and to make it worse, we didn't have a bank guarantee to protect our 38,000 euro deposit - so it looked like Plan A was going out of the window.

In June 2008, after a champagne send-off with my three children at St Pancras International Station, John and I travelled by train from London to Murcia, with two large bulging suitcases each, ready to start our new life in Spain in the apartment we were renting.  We knew that we needed to start thinking about Plan B.

We looked into the implications of the administration process, which we were aware could take a very long time (we are talking about Spain, after all!) and realised that we had an important decision to make: should we stay in Spain or should we give notice to our landlord that we were cancelling the rental contract and return to London?    It took us a long time to reach a decision (all of 2 seconds) so all we had to do now was find somewhere else to buy, preferably somewhere with a roof on. 

We cursed San Jose, we cursed our agents who had recommended the development and we cursed our solicitor who had let us pay the money for the deposit without mentioning that we should by law have a bank guarantee to protect our deposit in the unlikely event of things going wrong.  The unlikely event had happened and we were now looking for a new home in Spain with a restricted budget.  The only things we didn't curse were the sunshine, the friendly local people and the good wine.

So what was the good news?

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