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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,
We had thought and been more inclined to move to France!
However, now we are looking into it more thoroughly, as our house is on the market, we are questioning everything we once thought was right for us.
Spain has been suggested, so basically we are looking for a rural, relaxed French country way of life in Spain!
Our requirements are especially a milder and warmer winter than east coast uk. No risk of flooding, or bitingly cold winds. Would like some greenery to look at, and nice views. A small village. Possibly considering a B&B.
Don't speak any Spanish but willing to learn.
Initial searches show Valencia region as mild. Fortuna has been suggested to us. We have been to Spain: Seville and Barcelona. We loved both but Seville gets too cold in winter and wouldn't want to live in Barcelona, and around Barcelona is very expensive.
What areas do you suggest. We have a week coming up this month and need to start looking somewhere.

Thanks very much!
 

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Hi,
We had thought and been more inclined to move to France!
However, now we are looking into it more thoroughly, as our house is on the market, we are questioning everything we once thought was right for us.
Spain has been suggested, so basically we are looking for a rural, relaxed French country way of life in Spain!
Our requirements are especially a milder and warmer winter than east coast uk. No risk of flooding, or bitingly cold winds. Would like some greenery to look at, and nice views. A small village. Possibly considering a B&B.
Don't speak any Spanish but willing to learn.
Initial searches show Valencia region as mild. Fortuna has been suggested to us. We have been to Spain: Seville and Barcelona. We loved both but Seville gets too cold in winter and wouldn't want to live in Barcelona, and around Barcelona is very expensive.
What areas do you suggest. We have a week coming up this month and need to start looking somewhere.

Thanks very much!
Hi there,
I'm a bit confused. A nice B&B - to work in, to buy or to stay in??
What I'm asking really, is for more info. Will you be looking for work? Are you retired/ retiring? Anyone else besides you and your partner coming? Are you looking to buy or to rent?

PS You'll not get a really warm wimter anywhere except the Canaries.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hi,
Pesky, Zenkarma,
We, husband and I are 50 yrs of age. Husband works offshore and needs to fly back and for UK every fortnight and days may change, so needs to be near airport that serves UK all days, in summer and winter. Will be on our own apart from family visiting. So I will be alone a lot.

We are looking to buy a property, around 5 or 6 bedrooms with pool, edge of town, but with good transport links. Would prefer something with character.

I am thinking of running a small b&b to give me something to do, or let apartments, though not sure if there is demand as a lot of houses have one floor as separate accommodation. The other area is to have a market stall, but haven't researched this at all.

Main concern is are winters very cold, windy and how long do they last? What are lowest temps? I realise Spain is a big place. We are considering this a retirement move, if we get it right.

We went to Seville one November when it was zero degrees here and 24 degrees there. We had T shirt and shorts on and locals had padded winter coats, we had some strange looks! If winters are say cold for two months and weather is warm enough to go without coats either side, we could live with that.

Like the idea of having beach, ski and countryside nearby, but what's the trade off?

Kind Regards
Stella
 

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Like the idea of having beach, ski and countryside nearby, but what's the trade off?
Hi Stella

What you describe is doable, depending on your budget of course.

If you pick your area carefully, you could position yourself so that you were about an hour, hour and a half drive from the Ski resort, thirty to forty-five minutes drive from the beach and right smack in the middle of the countryside. Start looking in Las Alpujarras region of southern Spain which straddles two provinces—Granada and Almeria and sits at the foot of the Sierra Nevada mountain range to the north and the mediterranean sea to the south. The area is serviced by three airports, Granada to the North West, Malaga to the South West and Almeria to the South East. They should all be no more than about 1-2 hour drives from Las Alpujarras depending on which area you look at.

A large property for bed and breakfast and/or smaller flats for letting is all perfectly feasible. There is a huge range of properties available at varying prices it all depends ultimately on what your budget is what type of property you pick in what area.

You've got a lot of research to do!

The one thing I would say is, if you intend to finance this from bed and breakfast and/or lettings income and/or would need a mortgage as well think very carefully indeed about what you're getting yourself into and what all the implications are. If you're planning on financing it from say a UK house sale with no mortgage and living on the income from husbands work and the bed and breakfast/lettings income is a bonus and you could live quite happily without it then it's very doable just look at the taxation issues closely.

The downside? Undoubtedly the Spanish bureaucracy. You've never experienced the true definition of banging your head against the wall or tearing your hair out until you've dealt with Spanish bureaucracy!
 

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We live about 350 m above sea level in the Torrox/Frigiliana campo. We have stunning views over Nerja and Friggers. The lowest temperature we have experienced in the winter here was 8C. The real issue is that as the summers are very hot, 8C seems to be very very cold. Now that we are acclimatised the winters are cold, period. But what we do enjoy are the very different seasons we now have compared to the 8 month winter and often bleak summer in UK. At least this year's summer in UK was a good one even thought the long range forecast back in April was for another washed out summer!! Houses here are not built for cold winters so you would need to choose carefully. Our house is lovely and warm in the winter so we don't have any problems. Nice log fire and a gas fire are all we need. But about 10 km north of us, people we know have snow and sharp frosts in the winter as they are 800m above sea level. Good luck!!
 

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Hi,
We had thought and been more inclined to move to France!
However, now we are looking into it more thoroughly, as our house is on the market, we are questioning everything we once thought was right for us.
Spain has been suggested, so basically we are looking for a rural, relaxed French country way of life in Spain!
Our requirements are especially a milder and warmer winter than east coast uk. No risk of flooding, or bitingly cold winds. Would like some greenery to look at, and nice views. A small village. Possibly considering a B&B.
Don't speak any Spanish but willing to learn.
Initial searches show Valencia region as mild. Fortuna has been suggested to us. We have been to Spain: Seville and Barcelona. We loved both but Seville gets too cold in winter and wouldn't want to live in Barcelona, and around Barcelona is very expensive.
What areas do you suggest. We have a week coming up this month and need to start looking somewhere.

Thanks very much!
Hi
I fear that just a week is really nowhere near enough to start looking. I think also that you need to look at several different areas before you decide where to locate.
I'm going to suggest one surprising place to investigate - Cantabria and the Basque coast. It's stunningly beautiful up there, and you have Bilbao airport near by. Inland (because of the mountains) it can be cold, but if you are near the coast winters should be mild. The downside is that you'll have plenty of rainy days, and it doesn't get as hot as other parts of Spain in summer - although some may see that as a plus factor.
Good Luck, wherever you decide to investigate :peace:
 

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One factor that hasn't been mentioned is whether you wish to be in a heaviliy British-immigrant populated area or would prefer a more Spanish ambience.
Some of the towns inland from Malaga are heavily immigrant but then some people prefer this, at least until they are settled.

The further south you go the more the effects of the crisis are evident. Round this area running a B&B wouldn't be much of an earner - we;'ve got friends with a charming villa with lovely gardens, pool, views across to Gibraltar and Morocco...but they don't get much custom.
It's also not that easy to get permission or a space to work a market stall.

But....that is just my little corner of Spain. Things may well be different elsewhere.
One thing I'd say, though...rent before you buy. Get to know the area before you commit yourselves. It's easy to buy property now but very hard to dispose of it.
 

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We have friends with B&B and they are booked out throughout the year, but it has taken them years to get to that position. In which case, should you need to be up and running for income you would need to buy a functioning B&B with an established client base. I know of one for sale which is stunning, a converted flour mill with staff accommodation and enough space for 10 paying guests along with a restaurant. It really is lovely but it is going for €850,000. Ouch...
 

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It's easy to buy property now but very hard to dispose of it.
I think that one sentence sums up the current Spanish property market in a nutshell.

Many people I think are seduced by the relatively cheap prices and perceived value for money. Let's be honest you can buy a pretty nice property at the moment at a fairly modest price or at least significantly lower than you might have to pay in the UK.

Yesterday I saw a very nice 2 bed detached villa with a huge pool and plenty of included land for €115,000, which has to represent pretty good value for money.

But as you rightly say, buying it is one thing, selling it on if you find you've made a mistake is something else altogether. Once in, at the moment it's very hard to get out.

Hence the consistent prevalent advice at the moment—rent, it's much safer.
 

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It really is lovely but it is going for €850,000. Ouch...
That does seem like a lot of money for what you've described but it's hard to say without looking at the figures, turnover, type of property, location etc. It seems to me like they may have put it up for sale and aren't that bothered whether they sell it or not.

No doubt they've put in a lot of hard work on the property and building up their client base over the years but that doesn't necessarily always translate into realistic price for a going concern within this current economic climate.

The good news is that tourism to Spain is holding up well, it's actually increasing percentage wise so these types of businesses should still be quite viable.

In my opinion someone looking to do something like this would be better off finding the right location and property and building the business up themselves rather than pay someone else for their work in doing the same kind of thing.

Some property in Spain is still stupidly over-priced in my opinion. I saw a Cortijo flour mill yesterday beautifully restored to its original condition with a bit of land with it as well with 5 or 6 bedrooms for €2.2m.

I can't for the life of me think why anyone would want to pay that kind of money for what is essentially a 5-6 bed property. But there you go, it's not hard to see why the Spanish property market is in the mess it's in.
 

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I think that one sentence sums up the current Spanish property market in a nutshell.

Many people I think are seduced by the relatively cheap prices and perceived value for money. Let's be honest you can buy a pretty nice property at the moment at a fairly modest price or at least significantly lower than you might have to pay in the UK.

Yesterday I saw a very nice 2 bed detached villa with a huge pool and plenty of included land for €115,000, which has to represent pretty good value for money.

But as you rightly say, buying it is one thing, selling it on if you find you've made a mistake is something else altogether. Once in, at the moment it's very hard to get out.

Hence the consistent prevalent advice at the moment—rent, it's much safer.
My opinion has always been rent first, regardless of what the market's doing.
I am amazed that people come to a country they have never lived in before, usually to an area they don't know, (or know only from short stays and those are usually holidays). On top of that most people don't know much Spanish beyond shopping and talking about the weather and they BUY A HOUSE.
There are so many unknowns there.
I'd be terrified!:eek:
 

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Stellaj said:
Hi,
Pesky, Zenkarma,
We, husband and I are 50 yrs of age. Husband works offshore and needs to fly back and for UK every fortnight and days may change, so needs to be near airport that serves UK all days, in summer and winter. Will be on our own apart from family visiting. So I will be alone a lot.

We are looking to buy a property, around 5 or 6 bedrooms with pool, edge of town, but with good transport links. Would prefer something with character.

I am thinking of running a small b&b to give me something to do, or let apartments, though not sure if there is demand as a lot of houses have one floor as separate accommodation. The other area is to have a market stall, but haven't researched this at all.

Main concern is are winters very cold, windy and how long do they last? What are lowest temps? I realise Spain is a big place. We are considering this a retirement move, if we get it right.

We went to Seville one November when it was zero degrees here and 24 degrees there. We had T shirt and shorts on and locals had padded winter coats, we had some strange looks! If winters are say cold for two months and weather is warm enough to go without coats either side, we could live with that.

Like the idea of having beach, ski and countryside nearby, but what's the trade off?

Kind Regards
Stella
I think you need to be looking at major airports ie alicante Malaga if you need daily flights to uk. As for winters we go out in December and daily temps in and around axiquaria are say 18c it cools down on a night but we just get the wood burner roaring and everything is fine. We have a gas fire for mornings only till the sun gets above maroma and then ussually ok. Have a look at other posts ie autonimo and read them.we are thinking of taking a year out and trying to make a go of it in Spain but the autonimo situation and the 183 day rule seems to be a problem. If you want to be close to skiing the either southern Spain for sierra Nevada or northern for the picos but as someone has Said if you want warmish winters then go south.
 

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I think you need to be looking at major airports ie alicante Malaga if you need daily flights to uk. As for winters we go out in December and daily temps in and around axiquaria are say 18c it cools down on a night but we just get the wood burner roaring and everything is fine. We have a gas fire for mornings only till the sun gets above maroma and then ussually ok. Have a look at other posts ie autonimo and read them.we are thinking of taking a year out and trying to make a go of it in Spain but the autonimo situation and the 183 day rule see to be a problem. If you want to be close to skiing the either southern Spain for sierra Nevada or northern for the picos but as someone has Said if you want warmish winters then go south.
Not trying to be picky, but the word for self employed is autónomo or autónoma.
It's just if she tries to look up autonimo she won't find anything...:)

Most people on here feel that B&B is not a good idea. You should search for past threads on that too, looking for B&B or bed and breakfast. Also offshore workers. Look in thread titles and all thread too in the advanced search:)
 

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My opinion has always been rent first, regardless of what the market's doing.
I think that's a hang-back to peoples general experiences of property and renting in the UK, which of course is a completely different market. The perception is that those who rent only do so because they can't afford to buy and secondly it's throwing money down the drain with nothing to show for it at the end. Which is true to an extent but far less so in the current Spanish property market which is not the same as the UK.

Things have changed so much in the Spanish property market that renting actually represents a far more cost effective way of living in Spain—at the moment. That may well change again if and when the property market starts to move again but the general consensus seems to be that Spain has got itself into such a pickle with its property market than nothing is likely to happen within it for at least 5-10 years.

Add in the increasing property purchase transaction costs of around 15% and the annual running costs of a purchased property it's still financially viable for a 2-3 year stay to rent.

Taking an average 1 bed apartment for example which would cost say €50,000 and annual running costs of say €2,000 how long would it take you to recoup the transaction and running costs over renting an equivalent type property?

Rent on that flat should be no more than about €250-300 a month. Taking the higher figure that's €3,600 a year in rent. Assuming utility bills of about €100 a month = €3,600 + €1,200 = €4,800 a year.

15% of 50,000 is €7,500 plus €2,000 a year for three years is €7,500 + €6,000 = €13,600. Renting for 3 years would cost €4,800 x 3 =€14,400.

So it would take you just under 3 years to break even on the transaction and running costs of that 1 bedroom flat compared to renting it. That's not even taking into consideration mortgage costs either as I'm assuming cash purchase it would obviously take a lot longer if you factored in mortgage costs as well.

Beyond the financial implications of renting v buying you have the added bonus in renting that you can move whenever you like and you don't get stuck with a property you can't sell!

Just looking at the figures it's not hard to see why renting is the way to go—at the moment. But a lot depends on just how long you intend to stay for.
 
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I think that's a hang-back to peoples general experiences of property and renting in the UK, which of course is a completely different market. The perception is that those who rent only do so because they can't afford to buy and secondly it's throwing money down the drain with nothing to show for it at the end. Which is true to an extent but far less so in the current Spanish property market which is not the same as the UK.
No, for me it's nohing to do with economics or finance, hang backs, hang ups or perceptions (as I tried to explain in the post)
It's to do with settling in a foreign country.
I lived in Spain for over 10 years before I bought, and I wouldn't have bought in this area if I'd bought before, and I would have been wrong!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Hi,
Thanks for all your suggestions, I will look into them.
We are looking at property around €300. 000. We will not need a mortgage, but I would like to generate some income to cover costs and give me something to do. It doesn't have to be b&b, just a thought. Any suggestions for what else I could do? Come from an admin background.
Haven't really considered renting as have always owned property and like to do with it what we want. But maybe should consider now. Didn't want monthly payment, as we haven't got that now, but then suppose money will be in the bank!
A lot to think about and a lot to read!

Kind Regards
Stella
 

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Marbella Ski Club ( yes, really!) run regular buses for a day out skiing in the Sierra Nevadas, and the ski season seems pretty reliable, too- better than Scptland anyway! Skiing all day, no stress of driving on scary snowy roads and back down to sunny days on the coast in the evening!

A weekend in Granada is also really do- able from the Marbella area, bus up to the ski slopes by day- and tapas and dinner in the evening!

You're going to have to go south nearer the coast (low ground) if you want the mild winters, and if you want the skiing too, that really pin points your possible general locations.


As another poster pointed out, be very careful which airport you choose to be close to, as many offer very limited flight options in the winter, especially if hubby goes offshore from Scotland. That could be a really big limiting factor on your choice of location in Spain.

.....and check how much tax hubby would have to pay.
 
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