Buying a property abroad is a lifelong dream for many people, but can be a complex process. Below a list of steps which definitely will help to make it easier.
Plan your finances
This probably is the most important step of all. What can you afford? It does not make sense to look at properties if they are not fitting in your budget. Talk to a financial advisor if necessary, work out a strict budget and, very important, stick to that budget. Do not forget that it is not only the purchase price you have to pay. There are additional costs like: viewing trips, possible surveys, local taxes, insurances, moving costs etc. etc.
Do your research
Ask yourself questions like:
- why do I want to buy abroad and what are the consequences for me and my family;
- where do I want to buy;
- what kind of property.
Find your “perfect” location and property
Internet is a useful tool but of course you have to visit the country. Once you find an area in which you want to buy in, visit this region in different seasons to find out if it is a seasonal place (over-run in summer of deserted in winter). Talk to locals if possible. To find the ideal location when you are not living in the area is difficult and some people are wasting time by searching and searching for the right property without deciding. Our advice is, if you find a property that is not 100% but fulfils many of your wishes, you should seriously consider to buy this property. Then you can focus on the next step and move forward instead of losing valuable time. Unless you live somewhere you will never know if it is really ideal!
Get in touch with a reliable local estate agent. A company like Moraira Invest can help you finding the right property for you and answer the questions you might have. We take the time to discuss with you what the possibilities are. If you do not know the region we will first drive you around to find out what kind of area you would like to live in, we will show you different types of houses and then we will go back to the office to discuss further and to show you a couple of properties on the screen. If we really get the feeling that we know what you are looking for we will make a short list from which you can choose the ones you would like to visit.
Get a good lawyer
Moraira Invest can advice you helping to find the right lawyer or choose one yourself but never save money on a lawyer as this is a very important part in the buying process. He will check the paperwork and will do everything necessary to avoid problems.
Get a NIE-number
If you want to buy a property in Spain it is necessary to have a NIE-number. The easiest way to get this is to get in touch with a local gestor or service company who will advice you and help you to fill out the necessary papers. Moraira Invest works together with a couple of gestors and service companies with whom we have good experiences.
Open a bank account
This will give you easy access to your money in the local area. It might be worthwhile to shop a bit as costs and conditions can differ per bank.
Find a currency broker
A good currency broker can save you thousands. Moraira Invest can advice you to find a reliable currency broker in the region.
Arrange a deposit
If you want the vendors to take the property from the market while all legalities are finalised you will have to pay a deposit, which money will be transferred to the clients bank account of the lawyer involved.
Contracts will be signed at the notary after which you will be the official owner! Make sure that the property is insured as of this date.