Making the decision to move to another country is a difficult and life-changing decision. Before packing you bags and sending over your belongings, it is advisable to spend a good time visiting the area first, and learning about the place.
Once you have decided to purchase a property in Spain, there are many considerations to take into account, and many decisions to be made. Ensuring that you are working with reputable and trustworthy companies is always the first step. Prior to dealing with any estate agency, lawyer, development company, bank, building company, mortgage company or any other business or individual that you plan on working with, it is always advisable to request they provide you with a list of references. In this way, you can (and it is wise to do) follow-up on the references and confirm the claims.
Before you even look to purchase a property in Spain, it may be helpful to know that there are a few “different” types of properties available. A quick summary follows here:
Apartments: Standard apartments in Spain are no different than the rest of Europe, and are generally detailed by their location, their number of bedrooms and number of bathrooms. A “studio” apartment would have a combined bedroom / living area. The vast majority of apartments are built as part of Urbanisations, (or small communities) and will have monthly community fees payable. Many restrictions on such things as exterior decorations, satellite dish installations and awning or lighting changes can be quite difficult, and often impossible. The urbanisation or building will have a “President” assigned and this individual is responsible for overseeing the goings on of the building.
Duplex Apartments: A common trend throughout many areas in Spain is to have a growing number of duplex apartments. They are often 2 or 3 levels high, and often do not have elevators or wheelchair access from one floor to the next. Most of these are built in the traditional Spanish-style and are desired by many as they offer the same feeling of a townhouse, yet at a reduced price. Most duplex apartments are found in the same type of urbanisation as standard apartments, and most restrictions apply.
Townhouses: In many of the inland and mountainous regions, townhouses are very popular, and often built as part of an urbanisation or development, offer most of the luxuries of a villa, yet are attached or semi-detached from another townhouse. In most cases the townhouses on either end of the block will enjoy more sunshine and better views.
Villas: The most typical of housing in Spain is the villa. In any other area of the world this would simply be described as a detached home. A villa can range from the most simple 1 bedroom bungalow built on a 75m2 plot to the most luxurious 15 bedroom mansion on a golf course or the beach usually located in La Zagaleta. The best way to search for La Zagaleta Villas For Sale is the internet, there are quite a few reputable real estate portals offering villas for sale in this area. Any villa will have land and will generally be close to or within a short distance of the nearest town or city.
Fincas: Often translated as Farmhouse, the finca is the typical rustic home. These are generally located off the beaten path, and are mostly built as self-sufficient (with many obtaining their water supply from wells, electricity from solar panelling, and information and telephone via satellite. The vast mountainous and plateau regions of Spain are ideal for these wonderful retreat homes. In sizes ranging from small 1 bedroom rustic homes to modern 4 bedroom villas, the definition of Finca comes primarily from the location, and generally fincas will be built upon a large portion of land.
Parcela: A parcela is not to be mistaken for a property; this is simply a plot of land. Be certain to ensure that if you are looking to purchase a parcela in Spain, that you have received documented evidence of the necessary building permits before purchasing. A plot of land without a building permit can still make an excellent home for a caravan or trailer. Ensuring that the land has sufficient road access is another important consideration.