Originally Posted by trafforda
I have heard that to buy land and then have a house built on it is perhaps the best way to get the location and house size/style you want. In your experience, was it difficult to find a builder to build the property you wanted? Did it work out less expensive than trying to buy a similar property already built?
We are looking to retire to Greece or one of the Greek Islands in about 5 years time, and are currently enjoying learning Greek and holidaying in as many of the beautiful Greek Islands that we can - all in the name of research of course!
Hi Alison, we have actually tried both ways. Our first property purchase in Greece was an old house, which although in good condition structurally, needed internal changes/improvements. It was in a beautiful mountain village in the Pelion region of the mainland and we were lucky enough to meet a local builder to do the work, and he then recommended other tradesmen (electrician, plumber, tiler etc). We loved the house and were pleased with all the work which we had done, but realised quite quickly that the mountain village was a little too remote for us, so we sold it and began looking for a piece of land in another village (very close to original one, but by the coast this time). We are now the very proud owners of a beautiful home in the coastal village of Milina. We bought the land from a local, our .original builder recommended a Mechanical Engineer, we spoke with him and explained what we wanted (number of rooms / sizes / shapes etc) and he produced outline drawings, applied for planning permission on our behalf, and project-managed the build. As in the UK, costs vary depending on location, and coastal villages are more expensive that a few miles outside of the area. Designing your own has many advantages ie you get exactly what you want, and the overall cost for us was certainly much less than buying in the UK but difficult to judge whether we would have paid less for an old property which then needed to be refurbished. Hope this is helpful, but let me know if you have any more questions.
Good Luck with all your plans. Janie