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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am looking for land to buy to build a villa on in the La Romana, Hondon Valley Region of Alicante.

Does anyone have experience of how to find the land that does not involve the interaction with a mafia style real estate agent/collaborator?

Is there any specific website anyone can recommend?

Thank you in advance
 

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Look at plots advertised online. Find the plot using Google Earth. Visit the plot, speak to the neighbours. Track the owner and approach them directly. I did just that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for the response. Did you use a particular website online? Most searches I enter on the web engines return websites of agents... which defeats the object!

Thanks
 

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I used the major property portals - Kyero, Idealista and Fotocasa.

It doesn't matter that the plot is advertised by an agent. You don't contact the agent. Instead, find the plot and then find the owner. It's not always possible but quite often it is.

This is what I did - I found a plot advertised online. The advert had several photos. I analysed the photos, looking carefully at all sorts of details - mountains at the background, coast, large trees, patches of forested areas in the background, buildings in the area (even as little as a chimney and roofline is extremely helpful), shadows, roads, etc. I used clues from the advert to establish the probable area - I know the plot was in a particular area of Benalmadena, around 300 metres from the sea and walking distance from local train station.

I then used Google Earth to first narrow down the area and then I looked at the mountains at the background and tried to match them with what I saw on photos. I managed to find the most probable plot location. Then I visited the area and the location and, again using photos from the property portal, I found the plot.

I spoke with 2 neighbours, none of them knew the owner's name but they gave me clues - owner's nationality, profession, a few random pieces from her family history. I put these together and established the owner is a beautician, hairdresser or similar. I made a few calls to local beauty salons and eventually managed to find her. I then dealt directly with her, bypassing the agent who advertised the plot and who charges 10% of the sale price.

I viewed about 30 plots in total and used the method described above (all apart of the owner tracking) for half of the plots. Quite often these plots have "Se Vende" signs on them with owner's phone number. They are not always displayed by the edge of the plot. Walk around, look at overgrown corners, under bushes, in ditches outside the plot borders, etc. I found a few owner numbers this way. I know they are owners, I spoke with a few of them.

Many estate agents in Spain are cowboys. They have no formal agreements with the land owner about the sale. They know the land is for sale so they take pictures of it (trying not to show too many clues) and advertise it online. When there is a potential buyer interested in the property they then contact the owner saying "we have a buyer who want's your land, all you have to do is sign this agreement and we'll charge the buyer 10% commission fee". I was told this by the lady who sold us our plot. By the way, it is still advertised online as for sale - even though it isn't. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you. All makes sense
 
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