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09 Oct 2006 12:00 AM by EOS Team Star rating in In Spain of course!. 4015 posts Send private message

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This is a really hot topic at the moment.  It seems many people are being pushed by developers to complete without the proper habitation licence in place.

Have you got a question?  Are you being forced to complete without a licence?  Or maybe you've just got some helpful information.  Post it here or start a new thread for all to see and benefit from all your experiences.


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09 Oct 2006 2:07 PM by stefan51 Star rating. 2 posts Send private message

We completed without the licence in place on our apartment and it's been a nightmare.  After 3 years we're still on developer water and electricity with constant power cuts.

Wouldn't recommend anyone completes without the licence in place, it's crazy.

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12 Oct 2006 11:23 PM by baharry Star rating. 6 posts Send private message

We have bought or rather paid 1/3rd deposit on a new apartment which was 95% ready for occupation 18 months ago and has still not been issued with the habitation license and not on mains electricity. Why doesn't the developer complete the remaining 5% of building and collect the purchase price balance? I just cannot see who benefits from this situation.

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13 Oct 2006 12:25 PM by jackamo Star rating. 6 posts Send private message

That is interesting because we are buying apartments at Golf & Sport Resort Gran Mirador/ Muchamiel ( Alicante) - which is the title on their glossy brochure, and the developers, San Juan Urbana, have been pushing us, and others, to complete without the Habitation Licence being in place.

It is 3 over years since we made our initial deposit on what were told by Parador and the developers was a prestigious golf development

Many promises about this licence have been made, and broken (nothing new there!), and so a number of us, on the development, are refusing to complete until it is in place.

Consequently the developers are threatening to cancel our contracts, and withhold half of our deposit, claiming we are in breach of contract.

Incidentally we have recently discovered that, despite the title, it is unlikely that a golf course will ever be built and no planning application for one has ever been made.

And they say we are in breach of contract!! It gets dafter by the day.



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13 Oct 2006 4:41 PM by JD14 Star rating. 2 posts Send private message

I have only just discovered this site but am seeing lots of people in similar circumstances. I have just bought at Valle Romano a 5 star golf complex Estepona and it looks superb. I have had trouble in the past and if I can pass anything on by word of mouth I would advise always check who the golf course designers are as big names will only work with watertight projects. Also a good agent helps, I've started using Foxtons international in London and they are superb. Great knowledge and a massive company, makes me feel confident buying with them.

Buying in Spain should be easier than the UK

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23 Oct 2006 6:26 PM by webster Star rating in Sunny south coast bu.... 86 posts Send private message

regarding Habitacion licencia - it is not a good idea to complete without it for two reasons:

  1. the 'builder's' supply of water and electric may be free, but it is very unreliable
  2. if the builder goes bust between your completion and the issue of the habitacion, you may never get mains water & electric for the many years it takes to complete the legal wrangle.  Now that the property market has slowed and many developers are not able to sell all the properties off plan, this is a real future disaster waiting to happen to the unwitting.

It is legal to complete, I understand, in Spain without the Habitacion so you cannot delay on that alone.  I would recommend a professional snagger - we paid just £203 for ours - and the faults it showed up were enough for us to initiate a lengthy delay.  Also, it is not breach of contract for the buyer to delay if the building falls short of any point in the signed building specification - so dig it out and scrutinise it.  Ignore the builder's promises to correct all snags in the first year - no guarantee and its just another arm twister to complete sooner rather than later.  Having said that, I am sure that all of us would like to have our properties now, not an unspecified date along the manana!

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23 Oct 2006 8:10 PM by colesfamilywales Star rating in Pontypridd. 75 posts Send private message

When I read such remarks it sends a shudder, but surely if the BG is in place which has a date of completion, and that date has passed, the Buyer HAS EVERY RIGHT to cancel for breach of contract and claim all their money back plus interest..

I simply cannot how the Builder has any right to expect signature without all the Licences in place.

It would not happen in business, why should it happen in this industry ?

Anthony (Colesfamilywales)


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23 Oct 2006 10:00 PM by deveso Star rating. 8 posts Send private message


We have been informed that the licence of first occupation has been granted on the two bed apartment we have bought at Coto Real Duquesa.  Just wondered if the professional snagger you used was in the Costa Del Sol as we are considering getting a professional in.

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24 Oct 2006 10:25 AM by golfer Star rating. 5 posts Send private message

Hi There.

I would also like the name and contact details of your Snagger if the operate on Costa Del Sol.


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24 Oct 2006 1:44 PM by hallpossie Star rating in Wymondham, Norfolk. 5 posts Send private message

We would also like details of the snagger.


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24 Oct 2006 6:03 PM by onq Star rating. 45 posts Send private message

Hi All,

Have a look at website.  They are based in southern spain.  I have talked to them and they sound very competent but please understand I have not used their services as I haven't got a completion date yet.  I will however definately use a snagger on my property when the time comes.

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25 Oct 2006 1:23 AM by DonH Star rating in Almerimar, Almeria a.... 49 posts Send private message

Have used Roy Howitt from Inspectahome for our apt in Almerimar, Almeria. He is based in Murcia so charged us extra for the return trip. However, it was worth it as he did a thorough job and is accessible and very helpful on the telephone.
By the way, anyone know of a snagger in Lanzarote please?

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25 Oct 2006 11:21 AM by webster Star rating in Sunny south coast bu.... 86 posts Send private message

The snagger we used was Roy Howitt of - so he gets several recommendations here.  He didn't charge us extra for travelling to Palomares ( near Garrucha, Costa Almeria), but we did have to wait until he had several days work down there.  I paid £203 each time (we have had 2 properties snagged by him over the last few months).

Coles family are correct that there is a time period to complete by, but my 12 year in practice solicitor has never dealt with anyone who has ever obtained the legal full refund plus 6% interest that the law dictates.  There are too many excuses that can be used such as inclement weather (!) and lack of suitable labour (the state projects such as road building apparently have first call on legal immigrant labour).

I am loathe to resort to legal issues personally.  It takes too long and costs too much.  Having said that, the spanish are notoriously relaxed about time frames and so I don't see why we can't absorb a bit of that culture too.  After all, both parties have equal amount at stake.  The developer wants the remaining money paid (nearly all of them will have mortgaged the remaining half of each property with the resulting repayments) and we all want to start seeing a return on the investment we put in, not to mention actually using the building.  No point completing if the building is not in a usable state, ie with regular water and electric!

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25 Oct 2006 1:32 PM by DonH Star rating in Almerimar, Almeria a.... 49 posts Send private message

I should clarify my last post - Roy did not charge us extra for travelling to Almerimar - he did suggest doing one snagging visit instead of two for the normal price because it was such a long drive. I was happy with that and he subsequently e-mailed me the full list of snags. Since then I've had a few telephone conversations with him and he has been very helpful each time.
As it happens, he has now to do snaggings for other apartments on the same development (Laguna Beach) and so has suggested he will in fact do the follow-up visit to check progress while he is there at no charge.
I recommend you get in touch with him.
PS any contacts in Lanzarote?

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05 Nov 2006 3:08 AM by GR Star rating. 41 posts Send private message

Did the Duquesa Village Phase 1 & 2 residents get the licence before completion without any problems? 

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06 Nov 2006 3:53 PM by 3edgell Star rating. 6 posts Send private message

Is it possible to get the Habitacion licencia before completing? If so, how do you go about getting it?  

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06 Nov 2006 4:34 PM by Pitby Star rating in Andalucía. 1904 posts Send private message

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GR, I can say from our point, on Phase 2b (original plans) we have been given a copy of the Habitation Licence for Duquesa Village and will be completing in the near future. I would imagine that all the Phase 1 owners also received a copy of the licence before completion. Jan

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10 Nov 2006 5:15 PM by Smiley Star rating in San Pedro de Alcanta.... 2502 posts Send private message

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Just for info purposes Duquesa Village valuation on 2 bed 2 bath apt 80 sq m - 260,000€ if you guys are interested. Not sure which phase but shouldnt make too much difference PP was about 240k.

Rgds Smiley


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13 Nov 2006 1:32 PM by lizhagerty Star rating. 9 posts Send private message

I was disturbed to read below that the developer can demand you complete without the certificate of first habitation. Is that really true? I don't want to buy a house without official water, electricity, phone etc.

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13 Nov 2006 1:40 PM by Smiley Star rating in San Pedro de Alcanta.... 2502 posts Send private message

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Would not recommend completing without it. Many developers will try and insist but your lawyer should stand your ground for you and insist that the first licence is there prior to completion. Or at the very least that the certificate of silencio de administrativo has been issued by the Town Hall. My lawyer informs me that silence of administration is a statute in Spanish law. There is a process to follow but the licence is deemed granted by default as it has not been declined. Ask your lawyer to explain. Historically this has been sufficient. Whether it will continue to be so remains to be seen. It would not surprise me in the least that the regional or even National governments go to court to introduce legislation outlawing this statute in the future - just to ensure that corrupt mayors, planning officers etc cannot get away with what they have been getting away with. Additionally it will probably create more Civil Service jobs which will be a huge positive in the eyes of any Socialist government.

Rgds Smiley


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