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What to Look Out for When Buying a Costa del Sol Property from a Bank

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Spanish banks are currently the biggest owners of Spanish property with numerous repossessions on their books. This makes them Spain’s largest estate agents. But, buying from a Spanish bank is rarely straightforward and in our experience, it’s considerably more complex than a purchase bought from a private seller or developer.

If you find a bank repossession that you’re interested in, we recommend you always take independent advice from your lawyer and look out for the following:

Deceptive price tags: It may look like a bargain, but the prices for Spanish property sold by banks are not necessarily cheap. In fact, a recent blog post by Survey Spain http://www.surveyspain.com/blog/spanish-bank-repossession-properties-cost-20-more-than-private-sales reported bank repossessions cost 20 per cent more than other properties in Spain.

Long purchase processes: Spanish banks are not estate agents and the decisions regarding the sale of a repossession tend to be slow, drawn-out and very bureaucratic.

Inflexibility in purchase contract clauses: Not only do Spanish banks rarely accept lower offers on repossessions, they also tend to be inflexible on the content of the all-important purchase contract. This clauses in the contract may not be in your interests.

Limited financing and mortgage terms: Many bank repossessions in Spain reportedly come with a ready-approved mortgage. But this is, by no means, always the case. If there is a mortgage, the buyer usually has to accept the bank’s terms (these may be unfavourable) with little leeway for negotiation. You may also have to sign up for costly banking products such as life insurance, pension plans, etc.

Poor state of repair: Spanish bank repossessions that are not new build are often in a very poor state of repair. Make sure you factor refurbishment costs into your buying decision when calculating your budget.

Buying a property in Spain through a bank makes independent legal advice absolutely essential. Contact Andalusian Lawyers for expert assistance to ensure your interests in the purchase are protected and your investment is safe.

For more information on the purchase process behind buying in Spain, please download our free guide.

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