First published: November 2nd, 2015

Cheap Spanish real estate, banks seizures, good deals

… and other urban legends

Question (from a French reader): “I am confused. I found a bank foreclosure ad on a site in France: Real estate Spain CHEAP. I am in touch on the internet with a French speaking lawyer but he does not comply, no contact has been established so far. Do you know banks that manage seizures?”

Answer: You know, I have already seen a lot of approaches like yours. I summarize, the story is always the same: a buyer who is convinced of having found “the right plan”, that he will buy smarter and cheaper than others, and that ends up in tears in a Sunday night M6 broadcast (a well known French TV program).

I would like to break once and for all a myth: the “right plan” does not exist. Unless you are lucky (it is not prohibited to be), with a “bank apartment”, you will go from disappointment to disappointment:

- Ongoing costs and unpaid taxes for years: the banker no longer put a kopeck in a development that has already cost him millions, and it is unrealistic for a public authority or Property owners association to pursue a bank to court. And then, the latter is very slow in Spain …

- Pitiful state of the “good”, uninhabited since 2010 or earlier: the bank will even include into the contract an item under which you relinquish to sue it in the event of the subsequent emergence of hidden defects, that any normal owner should know… and recognize!

Electricity and water cut off because of unpaid bills, lack of authorization to inhabit, and so on.

As the wise man said: “When you pay with peanuts, getting monkey work should not amaze you”.

Believe me: in real estate in Spain, if you want a minimum of quality and legal certainty, you must accept to go through a professional and pay the price. And leave the “bank products” to nationals who themselves know (more or less) what to expect: with “bank properties”, the right plan always is the bank one.

Sorry if I discourage you, but things are what they are, not what we would like them to be.

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