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Spanish mortgage rates drop again September 07, 2015

Spanish mortgage rates are set to drop again. As August closed the interest rate at a historic all-time-low in the Eurozoe.

The main factor, the Euribor, mortgages and loans is said to stay in the region affecting of 0.16%, as from end of August, which makes it 0.308% lower than last year.

However, it's not so good news for those living off savings but is for homebuyers, mortgage holders, people with personal loans or credit cards. Having residential property prices at their lowest price since the property boom, combined with 0.16% is starting to make it very interesting to both first - time buyers, second home and investors alike.

Banks are more likely to agree to mortgage lending after the long period of them not wanting to play ball but they are still expecting to receive deposits in the region of 20-40% of the amount lent. Some banks starting to offer 100% financing.

So, now is good a chance to get on the property ladder. Take couches of property prices and low Euribor before they start rising.

Real estate agency celebrates 20 years open in Javea August 31, 2015

On friday 17th July we were joined by work collegues, friends and family to celebrate our 20th anniversary celebration. Yes, we've been operating as a local real estate business for 20 years now and we're proud to say that we're one of the most established and respected offices in Javea. Drinks and nibbles were enjoyed by all. As mentioned on our Facebook page, comments were encouraging and rememberance of Dad was emotive. So, here's to another 20 years of Vicens Ash. Your professional, yet friendly and honest real estate agent in Javea.

Javea has the biggest collection of Luxury Property on the market on all of the Spanish coast. June 10, 2015

95% of the transactions in some cities of Levante, as it is the case of Javea, foreign investors, make them according to the last report of Christie's Real Estate. Canary Islands and Valencia are other two destinations that lie between the preferences of the rich in the world.

The Spanish coast is becoming one of the favorite destinations of the millionaires in the world when it comes to buying and selling of homes. As an example, this real estate consultant report refers to Javea (Alicante) that has been placed as the third area preferring foreign investors buying. Ahead of this town are Marrakech (Morocco) and the Turks and Caicos Islands in the Caribbean.

So the East Coast is located between the preferences of foreign investors according to the report Luxury Defined. This document also points to the Canary Islands as one of the places where are increasingly stronger foreign investor when it comes to marry operations. In this sense, in the archipelago the transactions of these investors have doubled.

Valencia is another destination that highlights the consultant. In this place are running in his report the interest has increased by high-level villas. Part of the interest of millionaires in these assets is that prices are now in a "reasonable" level.

Spain is not the only place where foreign investments in the real estate sector have increased. Thus, Costa Rica or Big Island Hawaii have placed in the focus of investors seeking housing premium.

In the case of residences that are in the upper segment, investors are still preferring the traditional destinations of the millionaires. Thus, the Riviera, Hong Kong, New York and London still stood at the head of the places where most these transactions have increased.

2015 will see growth for demand of luxury property in Spain May 06, 2015

The international financial markets are expected to be a key driver in the uptake of Spanish prime residential property during 2015, according to a new analysis.

The latest market reports from Lucas Fox International Properties, suggest there has been an increase in demand from UK, US and Swiss buyers thanks to the rise of the dollar, pound and Swiss franc against the Euro. 

Conversely, the number of Russian investors is expected to dwindle as the rouble goes further into free fall in 2015.

‘With unemployment falling, the economy growing faster than predicted and property reaching the bottom, 2015 is set to be a pivotal year for Spain's property market. Prices are on average 40% below what they were since the start of the crisis in 2007 and we predict a slow and steady recovery. This is an opportune time to invest,’ said Lucas Fox co-founder Alexander Vaughan.

The report says that prices in Barcelona have stabilised in the past 12 months and new international interest is impacting on demand for prime residential property. 2015 is expected to be the most significant year of recovery for the prime market in Barcelona since 2007.

Lucas Fox sales data shows that Middle Eastern buyers accounted for 12.5% of all purchases during 2014, followed by the Spanish and French both at 11%, the Germans at 8% and the British at 7%.

The bulk of prime market property purchases in Barcelona during 2014 was for investment use with two out of five buying for that reason, whereas in2013, the main reason for buying was for use as a primary or secondary residence.

The number of transactions in 2014 increased over 2013, with more properties above €1 million selling than in the previous year. 

‘We see 2015 as the recovery year for the Spanish prime residential property market, driven mainly by increasing numbers of overseas buyers. We expect that those who were deterred by falling prices during the past seven years or so, will enter the market, enticed by some real opportunities,’ explained  Vaughan.

‘Prices have fallen by up to 40% in some areas of the city but, in the last 12 months, these prices have stabilised. Some recent figures suggest that, in some of the most desirable areas of the city such as Eixample and the beachfront, prices for the best properties are starting to creep up again. The key change in the Barcelona Residential market during 2015 will be the return of quality new build residential developments which have not been seen on the market for several years and where demand currently outstrips supply,’ he added.

In the Costa Brava, foreign investment in residential property has grown significantly. In 2010, foreign investment in new housing properties accounted for 9% of the market. In 2014, foreign investment represented 26% of the market.

Price movement in the prime residential property market for the Costa Brava region is not expected in 2015. However, sales volume is predicted to increase particularly in the coastal areas around Begur, including Aiguablava, Tamariu, Calella and Llafranc, traditionally a very popular area for mid to high end British and northern European buyers.

The report also points out that the Costa Brava prime residential property market is seeing maintained levels of activity each quarter, with sales trading leading into the summer particularly strong. In the second quarter of 2014, total transactional value of prime market sales by Lucas Fox reached nearly €8 million.

Lucas Fox sales data indicates that the majority, some 80%, of prime market buyers are looking at the Costa Brava as a second residence or holiday home although just over 13% of buyers in 2014 purchased in the area for use as a primary residence.

‘Given the worsening economic situation in Russia and the Rouble's continued struggles against the Euro, the number of Russian buyers will inevitably fall further. On the other hand, the strength of the British Pound and the likelihood that it will strengthen further against the Euro should attract an ever greater number of British buyers to the market in 2015,’ said Tom Maidment, partner of Lucas Fox Costa Brava.

‘Also, since the unpegging of the Swiss franc against the euro and its subsequent rise, we have already noticed an increase in the number of Swiss buyers coming into the market. Apart from this, more and more savvy purchasers are taking advantage of cheap mortgages to leverage their properties against a weakening Euro,’ he explained.

‘These factors should help make the market more attractive. Buyers will inevitably be looking for good deals in 2015, with a focus on reduced priced properties in prime locations,’ he added.
Along with slight price increases, Ibiza saw a 10% increase in prime market property buyer interest, a trend that is expected to continue in 2015 and it has seen foreign investment in residential property grow steadily. In 2010, foreign investment in new housing properties accounted for 18% of the market. In 2014, foreign investment represented 32% of the market.

Sales in the Balearic Islands, which includes Ibiza, have shown a more robust incremental increase in sales activity for the past year than is evident in the Spanish overall property market.

Lucas Fox Ibiza saw the majority of sales activity in the second quarter of 2014, transacting close to €10 million Euros during a three month period. While the majority of prime market buyers bought holiday home properties, close to a third, 28.6%, of purchases were for investment purposes.

‘As far as prices are concerned, we are seeing a slight rise once again. Ibiza remains very much the place to be and is a secure investment destination, with its high return on rentals during the peak summer months,’ said Maxim Rettich, partner of Lucas Fox Ibiza.

‘In 2014, we saw a 10% increase of client numbers and expect this upward trend to continue in 2015. The high season seems to be extending as increasing numbers decide to enjoy the island's lovely winter months. As a result, we are seeing an increase in demand for long term rentals. The vast majority of our clients come from the UK, Spain, France and Germany followed by Italy and the Netherlands,’ added Rettich.
The Marbella residential property has also seen strong growth in foreign property ownership. In 2010, foreign investment in new housing properties accounted for 12% of the market. In 2014, foreign investment represented 35% of the market.

Amongst foreign buyers resident in Spain, transaction value of purchases made across the Malaga region, which includes Marbella, increased for each quarter in 2014 over 2013 levels.

The data also shows that average property prices in key luxury districts across the Marbella region remained steady between the end of 2013 and the end of 2014. Average prices in Marbella Town rose in average prices to €2,307 per square metre.

According to statistics from the Lucas Fox website, international interest in Marbella comes primarily from the UK at 22%, followed by the US at 9% and after that, the Netherlands, Belgium and Sweden.

According to Stephen Lahiri, director of Lucas Fox Marbella, the market for designer and quality properties in prime locations turned around a year ago, with buyer interest picking up, and a significant increase in the number of transactions in 2014.

‘This has been particularly noticeable in the luxury sector, resulting in an increasing shortage of good quality, luxury properties available to buy. One of the primary changes that we have observed in 2014 is the profile of our buyers, which has evolved from predominantly retirees to a much more dynamic, younger buyer who is more quality and fashion orientated,’ he explained.

‘Therefore, the average age of buyers has dropped from an older age group to late 40s to 50s, whose focus is on quality, style, accessibility, services, security and privacy,’ he added.

It is expected that during 2015 prices across the market in Valencia will remain stable as they have done over the last six months. In the most discerning areas of the city, a slight rise of prices ranging between 1% and 3%, is expected.

Although the number of sales transactions of second hand properties in Valencia has dropped significantly since 2007, sales trading has seen increases each year since 2012 with a 31% increase in the number of sales of re-sale properties trading in 2014 over 2013 levels. 

‘It is expected that during 2015 prices across the market in Valencia will remain stable as they have done over the last six months. In the most sought-after areas of the city a slight rise in prices of between 1% and 3% is expected,’ said Juan Luis Herrero, director of Lucas Fox Valencia.

‘Foreign buyers are increasingly looking to buy in Valencia city as the market opens up to a more international clientele and this trend is expected to continue into 2015,’ he added.
The reports also suggest that 2014 was a year of stability and growth for the property market in Madrid, with prices expected to have bottomed out. Total sales value of transactions in the first three quarters of 2014 was higher than the corresponding quarters of 2013. 
Madrid city centre saw some price corrections in the third quarter of 2013, and has since steadied in price, maintaining an average price of €3,285 per square metre by the end of 2014. The affluent districts of Chamberi and Salamanca both saw slight price increases over the levels recorded at the end of 2013, at €3,260 per square metre and €4,138 respectively.

‘Last year was one of stability and growth for the property market in Madrid, according to Rod Jamieson director of Lucas Fox Madrid. ‘Following several years of crisis and an important price correction, positive economic indicators brought renewed interest from international investors,’ he said.

‘Madrid remains one of the most reasonably priced European capitals with a high growth potential. We believe that the market has bottomed out and predict that property prices in Madrid will remain stable during 2015,’ he added.

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Exchange rates and golden visa encouraging overseas buyers in Spain April 28, 2015

Currency exchange rates are encouraging even more foreign buyers back to the Spanish property market and this is reflected in increased sales, especially in popular areas.

New legislation to relax the requirements for Spain’s golden visa which allows non-European Union buyers to gain citizenship if they invest in the real estate market is also set to encourage more buyers from overseas.

In the Balearics the currency rates are currently by far the biggest influencing factor in the property market, according to Alejandra Vanoli, managing director of Mallorca Sotheby's International Realty.

‘Thanks to negative interest rates, affluent Germans are currently paying to keep their money in the banks and some would rather see it being put to good use in real estate investment. Mallorca is an obvious choice, German tourists have been coming to the Island for more than 50 years and represented 38.6% of all foreign arrivals to Mallorca in 2014, they have their own weekly newspapers, radio station and Air Berlin dominates the Airport.  There is a strong bond,’ she said.

She explained that with the British pound is at a seven year high against the euro, a two million euro property would have cost £1.67 million a year ago, but just £1.44 million today, some 14% more affordable. 

Swiss buyers are in a similar situation. The Swiss Franc soared when the National Bank abandoned its euro peg in the middle of January and a property costing 2.54 million Swiss francs a year ago would now cost 2.11 Swiss Francs, a saving of around 17%. 

The golden visa, which was introduced in September 2013, has seen 530 foreigners granted a visa so far with the majority, some 490 people, doing this through putting at least the minimum of €500,000 into property. Most of the property investors have been Chinese, Russian or Arab with business entrepreneurs coming largely from the United States and it has earned the Spanish economy an estimated €700 million so far. 

Previously the visa was granted to the applicant, their spouse, children under the age of 18 and disabled children of any age. This has now been extended to unmarried couples, economically dependent relatives and children of any age. 

Also, while the economic criteria remain the same, the path has been made smoother with applicants able to start the process upon arrival in Spain rather than applying from overseas. The visa will also be given within six months even to those who haven't formalised a property purchase, provided they've signed a contract and paid a deposit. 

‘We are expecting more non-European purchasers but at the moment Mallorca is still very much dominated by British buyers who have been coming en masse since the 1960s, the Germans, and the Swedish who also have a long standing love affair with the Island,’ said Vanoli.

‘Mallorca is reported to be the most popular holiday destination for Swedes in 2015. Like the Germans, they have a Swedish language e-newspaper and key royal family members have a home here,’ she added.

Mallorca Sotheby's International Realty has found that British buyers tend to fall in the 35 to 55 year old age range, wealthy because they've worked hard and retired young or been lucky enough to inherit a substantial nest egg. But in Ibiza, the buyers may be younger and are looking for designer homes.

On the Spanish mainland it is Marbella on the Costa del Sol that is proving popular. Indeed, the latest figures from the Spanish National Statistics Institute have shown that the sales increased by 28% in 2014. The increase means that property sales in Marbella are now 12% higher than their 2007 peak. 

It has been busy on the sales front in Marbella for the last three years, according to Christopher Clover, managing director of Panorama Properties. ‘Marbella's charms are plentiful. The coastline in the region is simply stunning and the cosmopolitan atmosphere of the town offers something for everyone. The streets of the old town provide a real flavour of the true Spanish style of architecture, intermingled with tiny shops and restaurants whose exteriors are covered with blossoming Bougainvillea throughout the summer months,’ he explained.

‘Marbella is one of the Mediterranean coastline's most desirable cities when it comes to owning a second home or a retirement property, as it's great year-round weather provide it with a 12 month season. Demand is strong, especially from buyers living outside of Spain. British buyers adore the resort and we see a lot of buyers from Scandinavia, Germany, France and all of the European countries. Marbella really does have everything that the perfect vacation resort needs, making it the ideal place for buyers to own their dream second home,’ he added.

Spanish banks are predicting a positive year for Spanish property but warning owners not to expect prices to reach their peak levels in the short to medium terms. A report from BBVA, Spain’s second biggest bank, says that improved expectations for economic growth and improving financing conditions means that sales will grow alongside a modest improvement in prices.

And a report from Santander says that consolidation is possible this year thanks to increasing credit, and price growth as 60% of Spanish provinces, 32 out of 50, already have house prices that are on the increase, or at least have bottomed out.

Interest rates are expected to stay at historic lows and a steady growth in demand will boost prices but it warns that the Spanish property sector will never be as important to the economy as it was before the crisis.

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Declaración de la Renta / Income tax Declaration April 20, 2015

It’s now time for the “Declaración de la Renta” which is  your income tax declaration for the financial year 2014 (due between April and June 2015).  You can either declare your income in Spain as a tax resident or a non tax resident. 

If you are living from a pension or small income DO NOT make the mistake of thinking that as you will not have any tax to pay that you do not have to submit a tax declaration – you do.  If your income is below a certain level, you will not have to pay any income tax, and if you pay municipal rates, then you may find you get a rebate.  For some people, the benefits of declaring tax as a resident in Spain by far out-weigh the costs of an accountant to file your tax return 

This year there are a lot of  newly introduced features that should be taken into account when doing your Spanish Income Tax Declaration.  We know this can appear complicated so we thought we would give you a list of Fiscal Advisors that we recommend to our clients. 

For more information on the new rules (Spanish only) :

    - Técnicos Asociados Consulting SL :

    - Aliaga Legal & Fiscal Services S.L. :

    - Gestoria Font: 965 790 354

    - Monkerud Asociados

    - AMS Economistas


'Pools Magazine' (Piscinas) published an article on our pool builder in Javea April 17, 2015

The local builder in Javea we recommend by the name of Jóse Javier Mata Catalá, from Construma had a large artical published in the national swimming pool magazine called 'Piscinas'. It just so happens the artical was all about a pool he built in Benitachell on the outskirts of Javea. A pool that started as an idea sketched on a rough piece of paper by the new house owner, which later materialised into reality. If you are thinking about building a pool in or around the Javea area, contact Jóse and ask him to show you his work and for a no obligation quote. He also has the pool shop located in Avenida de la Fontana, 2 in Javea where they speak English, Spanish and quite a bit of French.









Real Estate and Construction Will Boost Spain’s Economic Growth in 2015 March 17, 2015

According to a report carried out by independent financial advisors, Arcano, entitled ‘The Case for Spain III: Plus Ultra‘, the real estate sector and construction will be the engines of economic growth in Spain in 2015, as well as company and household financing.

The fall in fuel prices could also boost the growth of the economy, along with the depreciation of the euro against the dollar, the European Central Bank’s monetary stimulus and the fiscal policy. The report suggests that this growth could be above the 2% predicted by the Spanish Government.

Due to an improvement in financing, granting of mortgages, the return of foreign investors and a recovery in domestic demand, as well as the necessary reactivation in the construction of new homes, the financial body forecasts that by 2015 there will be a resurgence in the residential building sector and the price of housing in Spain.

The report considers that the renewed offer of bank financing is due to the liquidity and solvency of the system having greatly improved since the end of 2013, and notes that the flow of new credit to households and SMEs is positive and is growing, which clearly supports economic growth.

Ten risks to the Spanish economy are also listed in the report, which are: complacency; debt; demography; energy dependency; fiscal sustainability; institutional crisis; low inflation; sustainability of growth in the long term, wage recovery and unemployment. According to El Economista, the report states: “These risks, although tremendous, are, however, much less than those Spain had in 2007″.

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“Spain has Overcome the Worst of the Crisis”, says Rajoy March 17, 2015

Attending the last Council of Ministers meeting of 2014, the Spanish Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy, reiterated that 2014 has been a year of recovery for the country and that the Spanish economy is forecast to take-off in 2015. He also highlighted that the tax reform that comes into force on 1st January will firmly support growth and business competitiveness.

During the meeting, measures were approved to support the financial sustainability of the regional governments and local authorities, pensions were raised and also the minimum inter-professional wage rise was confirmed.

Rajoy stressed that 550,000 jobs have been created during the year, not including the figures for December, “following seven years of crisis and consecutive declines”, and that 338,000 more people are making National Insurance contributions.

The Prime Minister also pointed out that “the net creation of companies has increased at a rate of almost 5% over last year and 10% over 2011″, with 71,500 new companies being incorporated in Spain between January and November, that as a result of the reforms the Spanish economy has gained 2.3% in competitiveness, and that Spanish exports are ahead of countries such as the United States, Japan, France, Italy and the United Kingdom, representing 34% of the GDP.

According to the Spanish Government website, La Moncloa, Rajoy stated that Spainhas managed to overcome the worst phase of the crisis without seriously prejudicing the social welfare system, with over half of the cost contained in the General State Budget, almost 54%, dedicated to social costs. Rajoy also stressed the social aspect of the tax reform coming into force on 1st January, which will result in a general reduction in taxes of 12.5%, and will principally benefit those people on the lowest incomes. He said: “This tax reform will not only put 9 billion euros into taxpayers’ pockets, but I believe it will also give a definitive drive to economic growth and to the business competitiveness of our country.”

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Real Estate Sector Will Employ 10% of the Active Population by 2020 March 17, 2015

Over the next five years the volume of people employed in the Spanish real estate sector will increase, in relation to the working population, to account for around 10% of the total, according to a recent survey carried out by the consulting firm KPMG.

This rate is three points higher than the percentage of 7% currently employed in the industry, but is still far from the 14% of the active population which were employed in the sector in 2008, before the end of the boom in the sector and the bursting of the housing ‘bubble’.

The KPMG report entitled “2015: year zero for the start of the recovery of the real estate sector in Spain” was prepared with the collaboration of more than 200 executives in the real estate sector in Spain, and surveys were carried out with over 150 real estate company executives, companies with involvement in real estate, financial institutions, investors, the Sareb and the Public Sector.

According to the surveys, 55% of those questioned estimated that the real estate business will employ between 7% and 10% of the active population in the next five years, while a further 35% considered that this figure could reach between 10% and 15%. At the same time, 68% of the respondents felt that employment in the real estate sector needs to reach the level of 10% of the active population in order for the recovery to be obvious.

With regard to the expected recovery of the real estate sector, El Mundo reported that two-thirds of the executives surveyed do not envisage this taking place within a year, and in fact more than half (56%) estimated that it will be at least another two years before the current offer is absorbed.

On the other hand, as far as the demand is concerned, one-third of those questioned (35% of the total) estimate that it has already recovered or that it will do within the next twelve months, and another 45% estimate that this recovery will take place over the next one or two years.

The experts consulted by KPMG predict that in five years’ time, the real estate sector will once again increase its weight in Spain’s GDP, with 58% of the respondents estimating that it will reach a percentage of between 10% and 15% during this period, compared with the 10% that it currently represents, while 23% consider that it may even rise to between 15% and 20% of the national wealth.

In any case, the contribution of the real estate business to the Spanish economy will not even come close to the level of 22% of the GDP it accounted for in 2007, the exercise prior to the crisis.

However, encouragingly, 70% of the experts involved in the study agreed to consider that the sector has recovered if it assumes 15% of the country’s GDP during the course of the next five years, and almost all of those surveyed by KPMG, 94%, emphasised that Spain is currently a destination of interest for real estate investment.

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International Tourists Again Register Record Spending in 2014 March 17, 2015

In 2014, for the second consecutive year, Spain beat their best historical record for international tourist spending, reaching 63,094 million euros, an increase of 6.5% over the figure for 2013, which was also a record year.

While presenting the data from the Egatur tourism expenditure survey this week at the Spain Global Tourism Forum, organised by the Ministry of Industry, Energy and Tourism, as a prelude to the opening of Fitur 2015, the Spanish Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy, said that these figures have turned tourism into “a flagship” of the Spanish economy.

All the main tourist source markets increased their total spending in the year, with notable increases being registered in the expenditure of tourists from the United Kingdom, with 12,746 million euros and an increase of 5.9%, followed by Germany, with 10,024 million euros (+3%), and France, with 6,555 million euros (+9.7%). The largest increase, however, corresponded to the U.S. market, whose expenditure amounted to 2,849 million euros, representing an increase of 15.5%.

Catalonia led the ranking of preferred destinations, with respect to tourist spending, receiving 15,100 million euros last year, representing an increase of 6.7%, followed by the Canary Islands, with 12,444 million euros (+6.6%), while the Balearic Islands received 10,380 million euros in tourist expenditure, but registered a decline of 2.4% over the previous year. Receiving 9,349 million euros of international tourists’ spending last year, Andalucía registered the greatest increase, rising by 11.4%.

El País reported that the favourable expenditure data for Spain is in line with the improvement in global tourism, which also closed 2014 with record figures, registering growth of 4.7%, and a total of 1,138 million travellers around the world, according to data from the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).

By world regions, significant increases were recorded for the two Americas (with growth of 7%), plus Asia and the Pacific (+5%), while the growth was more moderate in Europe (+4%), the Middle East (+4%) and Africa (+2%).

The Secretary General of the UNWTO, Taleb Rifai, congratulated Spain on receiving a record of almost 65 million tourists in 2014, representing an increase of 7.1% over the previous year, which ranks it as the third most visited country in the world, and as the second destination in terms of tourism revenue.

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Spain's real estate market is recovering March 17, 2015

Spain’s real estate market is now recovering, amidst gradually improving economic conditions. Spanish house prices dropped 3.03% during the year to end-Q2 2014, (-3.12% inflation-adjusted), the lowest annual decline since Q2 2008, based on figures from TINSA.

During the latest quarter, Spanish house prices increased slightly by 0.15% (-0.78% inflation-adjusted) in Q2 2014.  Residential property transactions surged 48% in Q1 2014 from a year earlier, according to the Instituto Nacional de Estadistica (INE).

The improvement is mainly driven by foreign property buyers, buying on the coast and in cities like Barcelona. “It’s crazy the number of investors coming in,” said Fernando Acuna of Aura real estate advisory firm. “I think 2014 is the year we will see a lot of transactions,” he added.

Britons accounted for 15% of all sales to overseas investors, followed by the French (10%), Russians (9%), and Belgians (7%), according to Spain’s society of property registrars.

Spanish house prices have been falling for six years, with a total decline of 40% (46% inflation-adjusted) from the values reached in Q4 2007, before the crisis.  There have been 25 consecutive quarters of y-o-y declines:

    In 2008, Spanish house prices fell 8.75% (-10.05% inflation-adjusted)
    In 2009, house prices fell 6.57% (-7.23% inflation-adjusted)
    In 2010, house prices fell 3.85% (-6.67% inflation-adjusted)
    In 2011, house prices fell 8.17% (-10.28% inflation-adjusted)
    In 2012, house prices fell 11.34% (-13.82% inflation-adjusted)
    In 2013, house prices fell 9.19% (-9.44% inflation-adjusted)

House prices are still falling nationally, but most regions are showing remarkable improvement.

During the year to Q2 2014:

    In the Capital and Large Cities, house prices dropped 4.8%, a large improvement from annual declines of 11.5% in Q2 2013, and 13.5% in Q2 2012
    In Metropolitan Areas, house prices dropped 3.0%, far lower than from annual declines of 12.7% in Q2 2013, and 11.7% in Q2 2012
    On the Mediterranean Coast, house prices dropped 7.1%, an improvement from annual declines of 7.5% in Q2 2013, and 13.3% in Q2 2012
    In Balearic and Canary Islands, house prices increased slightly by 0.1%, in contrast with annual declines of 3.7% in Q2 2013, and 6.8% in Q2 2012
    In Other Municipalities, house prices fell just 0.1%, a remarkable improvement from annual declines of 11.5% in Q2 2013, and 7.3% in Q2 2012

Urban land prices remain weak, down 10% y-o-y in Q1 to an average of €141.5 per square metre (sq. m.), according to INE.

The total number of properties sold dropped 17.4% to 300,349 units in 2013 from the previous year. Of which, about 81.2% were in the second-hand property market while 18.8% were new housing.

The Spanish market is yet to hit bottom, agents and market experts said, but the rate of decline seems to be moderating.

“I think that we are coasting toward the bottom — the economy and the housing market,” said Mark Stücklin, a  real estate expert and consultant in Barcelona, in a report by Spanish Property Insight. “There’s been five years of declining prices, and the last two years have been double-digit declining prices and acute pain and distress.” But he added that the rates of devaluation were easing. “In 2014, average price drops will get smaller and smaller, and I think we’ll bottom out in prices in 2015.”

The Spanish economy expanded at its fastest clip for six years in Q1 2014, with a GDP growth of 0.4%, thanks to increased domestic demand. The economy is expected to grow by 1.2% in 2014, after contracting by 1.2% in 2013, and by 1.6% in 2012, and after meagre growth of 0.05% in 2011.
From boom to gloom

Spain average house price

From 1996 to 2007, Spain’s national average house price rose by 197% (117% in real terms), one of Europe’s highest house price increases.

Madrid and Barcelona aside, house prices are highest on the Mediterranean: in Catalona, Andalucia and Valencia. The price of coastal properties surged 250% (155% in real terms) from 1996 to 2007, on average, as hundreds of thousands of foreigners, mainly from the UK, France and Germany, bought property.

On the other hand, the average price of properties in Spain’s two main cities, Madrid and Barcelona, rose 188% from 1996 to 2007, while prices in other inner provinces rose by 175% (101%).

The massive housing boom ended abruptly in 2008, as the global crisis hit and credit dried up. The housing slump has battered the Spanish economy, and brought spiraling unemployment. Developers were left with blocks of unsold properties and massive debts. Uncertainty engulfed the market.

By end-2010, house prices have already fallen by about 17% from the 2007 peak, according to the Bank of Spain figures.

In the first three months of 2008 the average price of private housing stood at EUR 2,101 (USD 2,898) per square meter, compared to December 2013’s EUR 1,467 (USD 2,024), which is the lowest figure registered since the beginning of 2004.
SAREB, Spain’s ‘bad bank’

For several years prior to 2008, the Spanish authorities have failed to monitor uneconomic lending practices and failures associated with the savings banks in Spain. The ease of access and low borrowing costs fuelled the growth of the property and construction sectors of the economy, ultimately leading to a speculative bubble. The initial growth masked the scale of these problems. Soon after, the global credit crunch and the sovereign crisis of the Euro zone ensued, triggering a global recession and leaving creditors with bad debts.

SAREB (Sociedad de Gestión de Activos procedentes de la Reestructuración Bancaria or Company for the Management of Assets proceeding from Restructuring of the Banking System) was founded in 31 August 2012 tasked to separate toxic or problematic assets from the balance sheets of credit institutions that require public support. SAREB is loosely called Spain’s “bad bank”.

Apart from achieving restructuring of the Spanish financial system within a maximum period of 15 years, it also aims to obtain the maximum possible profit earning capacity from these problematic assets.

About EUR 55,000 million (USD 75,839.50) have been transferred to SAREB from nationalized Spanish financial institutions: BFA-Bankia, Catalunya Banc, NGC Banco-Banco Gallego and Banco de Valencia; and banks that have required medium-term financial aid. Of this amount, two thirds correspond to loans and credits associated with the real-estate sector, and a third to real-estate assets.

In 2013 SAREB has taken EUR 54 billion (USD 75 billion) of troubled property loans from the balance sheets of the country’s nationalized lenders, as reported by the Financial Times. SAREB has started placing these assets into portfolios to be sold to investors, which has helped generate confidence that a floor may have been set on prices.
Surge in foreign demand

Spain share total demand

Foreign investors have started to return to the Spanish property market since the crisis hit in 2008. The Golden Visa scheme, which came into force and is fully applicable since 30th September 2013, has resulted in increased interest not only from the Middle East but also from Asia and Russia. Under this system, any non-EU national coming to Spain with more than EUR 500,000 (USD 689,700) to invest is automatically granted a residency permit.

"We have already seen a staggering 2,500 per cent increase in Middle Eastern buyers this year versus the same period in 2012, and a 190 per cent increase in buyers from Russia and Lithuania.", said Marc Pritchard, sales and marketing director for Taylor Wimpey España, in a report by Telegraph UK.

The past 12 months in particular has seen an increase in interest in Spanish property by foreign investors looking to cash in on the highly depressed property prices which tumbled from their pre-crisis highs. “Several large deals have been completed for assets that 18 months ago not even the most foolhardy speculator would have touched”, according to Myles Johnson of the Financial Times.

Chavarria Waschke, managing director of Balearics Sotheby’s International Realty, told Property Wire that foreign ownership is still strong and has doubled over the last five years with British, Dutch, German, Danish, and Swedish buyers keen to secure a home in the Balearics.

Demand for Spanish housing from both foreign residents and non-residents accounted for 15.83% of all home purchases in the fourth quarter of 2013 – an increase from 2012’s 11.16%, according to the Spanish Ministry of Development.

The Balearic Islands is especially attractive to the foreign market with 40.34% of total demand coming from foreigners. This is followed by the Valencian community with 35.02% foreign demand; Canarias with 34.34%; and Murcia with 23.62%.

To some extent, demand from foreign buyers compensates for the weak local demand. Foreign demand, which accounted for 1 in 6 property sales in Q4 2013, is becoming increasingly important in the housing market’s recovery.
Property transactions still at record lows

Spain property transaction

With the surge in foreign demand for Spanish real estate, sellers are inclined to refrain from lowering prices as they hold out for better offers, causing the number of sales to decline 17.4% to 300,349 housing transactions throughout 2013, according to provisional data from the Spanish Ministry of Development. This represents the lowest annual volume of purchases of property recorded in the time series available since 2004.

The regions with the highest number of sales in 2013 were: Andalucía (58,836); Valencian community (47,901); Cataluña (44,587) and Madrid (40,201).

While the regions with the lowest number of sales in 2013 were: La Rioja (2,256); Cantabria (3,127); Navarra (3,251) and Asturias (4,559).

A total of 93,438 transactions were carried out in the fourth quarter, which is 24.44% (22,834 transactions) higher than in the third quarter.

During 2013, second-hand housing accounted for 81.23% of the transactions, compared to 18.77% for new housing. In the fourth quarter, previously owned houses accounted for 80.36% of transactions compared to 19.64% for new housing.

The 17.4% year-on-year decline in home sales was due mainly to the fall of new home sales, which fell by 62.81%, to a total of 18,355 transactions in Q4 2013, while sales of second-hand homes fell by 11.92% to 75,083 transactions – in both cases the highest number of transactions since Q1 2013.

The highest number of new home sales in 2013 was registered in Andalucia with 12,354 transactions, followed by the Valencian community with 6,967 transactions. While the highest number of second-hand home sales was also registered in Andalucia and the Valencian community with 46,482 and 40,934 transactions, respectively.
Interest rates stabilizing

Spain interest rates

The great Spanish housing boom was fuelled by 15 years of dramatic reductions in mortgage interest rates, from 17% in 1991, to 10%–12% (1995 to 1996), to below 3.5% (2004 – 2005) - among the lowest rates in Europe.

Post-crisis, the average mortgage interest rate in Spain has stabilized at between 2.3% and 3.0% since the second half of 2009, after the European Central Bank (ECB) cut rates in response to the financial crisis to a historic low of 1% in May 2009, where they have remained.

In January 2011, average Spanish mortgage rate rose slightly to 2.88%, from 2.52% during the same period last year, according to the Bank of Spain.

Spain mortgage loans

Spain’s housing market is extremely vulnerable to interest rate changes, due to the use of adjustable rate mortgages. More than 80% of new mortgages have had initial rate fixations (IRF) of less than 1 year since 2004 (more than 90% of new loans from 2005 to 2006). In 2010, about 86% of new mortgage loans had an IRF of less than a year; in 2011, about 82%; in 2012, about 78%; and in 2013, it has moderated to around 68%.

Average mortgage interest rate in Spain has stabilized between 3.0% and 3.5% since July of 2010. The Euribor is still unusually low at 0.543% in December 2013 – significantly lower than its peak value at 5.393% in July 2008.
Stagnant mortgage market

Spain outstanding mortgage loans

Although a total of 300,349 homes were sold in Spain in 2013, only 197,641 new mortgages on homes were recorded, representing an annual decline of 27.8%, according to the National Statistics Institute. This suggests that almost 35% of the home purchases were transacted in cash.

Since the peak levels of 2006, when 1,342,171 new home mortgages were constituted, the figure has fallen by 85.2%.

2013 is the sixth year of consecutive decline in new home mortgages. It has, however, moderated compared to 2012, when the number of new mortgages fell by 33%. In 2011 the decrease was 32.8%, in 2010 it was 6.7%, in 2009 it was 22%, in 2008 it was 32% and in 2007 it was 6.7%.

The average home mortgage debt registered its lowest level in the time series in 2013, at EUR 99,838 (USD 137,717), with a decline of 3.5%, while the capital loaned reduced by 30.3%, to EUR 19,732 million (USD 27,218 million).

The regions which registered the highest number of new home mortgages in 2013 were Andalucia (37,831), Madrid (30,997) and Catalonia (29,690). All regions registered negative rates, year-on-year, especially Murcia (-35.3%), the Basque Country (-34.6%) and Castilla-La Mancha (-34.4%). The lowest negative rates were recorded in La Rioja (-6.6%) and Aragón (-15.4%).

The regions which borrowed most capital for home mortgages in 2013 were Madrid (EUR 4,246 million [USD 5,857 million]), Catalonia (EUR 3,252.8 million [USD 4,487 million]) and Andalusia (EUR 3,215.1 million [USD 4,435 million]).

In December 2013, the number of mortgages granted on homes totaled 12,329, representing a drop of 30.1% over the same month of 2012.

The year-on-year drop in December, in which home mortgages accumulated 44 months of consecutive declines, is more pronounced than in November, when the number of home mortgages fell by more than 27%.
Rental yields falling

The price of renting a home fell by 5.2% in January compared with the same month of 2013, to stand at EUR 6.87 (USD 9.48) per square metre per month, according to data reported by Kyero News, which also showed a month-on-month decrease of 0.5%.

Since prices peaked in May 2007 at EUR 10.12 (USD 13.96) per sq.m. per month, the price of rental housing has accumulated a decline of about 32%. In fact, eight regions have recorded declines of over 30% since they reached their maximum price levels six years ago:

    Aragón is the region to register the biggest drop in rental prices (around -43%)
    Cantabria (around -38%)
    Valencia (around -37%)
    Castilla-La Mancha (around -34%)
    Catalonia and Murcia (around -33%)
    La Rioja (around -31%)
    Andalusia (around -30%).

Rental prices fell in 12 regions, year-on-year. The greatest decline was registered in Navarra, where it fell by 1.9%, followed by Madrid falling 1.7%, La Rioja (-1.6%), Extremadura (-1.5%), Murcia (-1.3%) and Castilla-La Mancha (-1.1%). With declines below 1% are: Andalucía (-0.7%), Aragon (-0.6%), the Canary Islands (-0.6%), the Balearic Islands (0.5%), Valencia (-0.5%) and Cantabria (-0.1%).

Beatriz Toribio, spokesperson for, stated: “although rental prices continue to fall due to the current economic climate, we can see that the fall is slowing.” According to Toribio, rental prices will continue to fall this year, albeit “very softly”, and so in some areas of the large cities increases will begin to appear.

The highest prices per square metre in January were registered in the Basque Country (EUR 9.5 or USD 13.1 per sq.m. per month), Madrid (EUR 9.01 or USD 12.43) and Catalonia (EUR 8.3 or USD 11.45), while the lowest were situated in Extremadura (EUR 4.5 or USD 6.21) and Castilla-La Mancha (EUR 4.8 or USD 6.6)International Business Times.

The degree of overbuilding can be guessed at by looking at the number of housing starts from the National Statistics Institute (INE):

    From 1990 to 1996, an average of 240,000 dwellings were started annually.
    Between 1999 and 2002, with house prices rising rapidly, dwelling starts exceeded 500,000 units annually. The number rose to more than 650,000 annually from 2003 – 2004
    In 2005, dwelling starts exceeded 700,000 and peaked at 760,179 in 2006, due to rising demand from EU nationals
    In 2007 commodity price rises brought rising costs – and starts slowed to 615,976.
    The global financial meltdown brought drastic decline. There were just 328,500 dwelling units started in 2008, dropping to 159,286 units in 2009. By the end of 2010, there were about 123,616 dwelling starts in Spain
    Dwelling starts declined further in 2011 to only 86,252. By year-end October 2012, only 41,008 housing starts were registered

In 2013, licenses to build new homes totaled 33,869, representing a decline of 23.3% compared to the same period in 2012 with 44,162 licenses granted, and the lowest figure registered since 2000, according to the Spanish Ministry of Development.

A total of 58,319 licenses were granted for new constructions, renovations and extensions, representing a decline of 16.2% y-o-y.

By property type, permits for the construction of family houses fell by 22% to a total of 11,315 licenses, while the number of permits issued for the construction of blocks of housing declined 23.8%, to 22,538.

Dwelling completions followed a similar path. Despite the massive oversupply, dwelling completions exceeded 630,000 in 2008, most units having been started before the crisis. In 2009, dwelling completions dropped to 424,000. In 2010, completed dwellings stood at 276,883. A further decline in 2011 with only 179,351 dwellings completed. Only 133,415 dwellings were completed in 2012. By the end of third quarter in 2013, dwelling completions were down to 43,157.

The average apartment size remained at 107 square meters, while the average size for a family home stood at 197 square meters.

Tinsa believes the housing glut will be cleared by 2017 and new constructions will have to pick up by second half of 2015.
Economy expected to grow slightly by 2014

Spain gdp unemployment

The Spanish economy expanded at its fastest quarterly pace in six years in the first quarter of 2014, with GDP growth of 0.4%, thanks to increased domestic demand. In Jan. 23 2014, Spain became the second euro zone country to exit its international bailout program, after Ireland.

The economic recovery continued in the second quarter, and the signs are positive – Spain’s economy is projected to grow by 1.2% in 2014, and another 1.8% in 2015, according to government estimates.

It has been a long, hard slog.  Recession has been Spain’s normal condition for years.  In 2013, the economy shrank by 1.2%, according to the IMF, and by 1.6% in 2012. In 2011, the economy grew 0.5%, but there were annual declines of 0.2% in 2010, and 3.8% in 2009.

Spain’s economy was fuelled by property during the boom decade from 1997 to 2007, when it grew by 3.8% each year. The building frenzy spread to all parts of Spain and ignited a crazy optimism, supported by cheap mortgage credit and by an unbelievable surge in residential construction.  At the height of the housing boom in 2007, housing investment was no less than 7.5% of Spain’s GDP, significantly above the OECD average.  The construction industry became a key employer of low-skilled workers. The increase in construction activity helped pull unemployment down from 24% in 1994, to 8.3% in 2007. Then the economy plunged into recession in late 2008. The country hasn’t seen significant growth since then.

With the situation reversed, Spanish unemployment now stands at 25.3% in Q1 2014, among the highest in the OECD and more than twice the euro area average of 11.8%. In June 2014, Spain’s inflation was 0.1%, according to INE.

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Low cost plans for more train connections on the costa March 17, 2015

A 'low cost' version of the Valencia-Alicante train via a Dénia-Gandia link, has been put forward by the regional government. Rather than a high-speed AVE, which travels up to 220 kilometres per hour, the stretch between Dénia and Benidorm will remain as it is - with a few minor improvements - and a top speed of 84 kilometres per hour. Trains would run on electricity, tracks would be widened and defects patched up, a far cry from the state-of-the-art cross-national network originally on the cards. The only AVE line would be from Benidorm to Madrid, although a direct connection from the former to Alicante airport would be included in the plans, which means travellers could at last get to El Altet airport. It would also mean, getting from Benidorm to Spain's capital city would take less than two-and-a-half hours - and if enough trains ran at the right times, day trips from the Costa Blanca to Madrid would be very feasible.




Gata Residencial urbanisation is now finished March 11, 2015

We have Been informed that the work is now complete and the urbanisation is well established. Gata de Gorgos council has finally approved a project that will see all unfinished urbanisation work on the Gata Residencial estate finished, after 14 years in limbo. In 2000, the urbanisation was billed as the pathway to prosperity for Gata. It was meant to have 700 homes, but by the time developer Jubesa 2000, went into receivership 996 had been built.

Natural Gas is coming to Javea! February 18, 2015

Recently we received this information and thought we would share it with you all about the availability of natural gas in javea.


- Installation FREE.- High connection 182.50 + VAT- If you have installed an electric boiler, a natural gas heater FREE of charge.
Natural gas is cleaner and economic almost half the price of propane or butane needs no storage space and it's safe and easy to use. If you want more information for installing piped gas in your home, please contact us and we'll point you in the right direction.


Jávea in World's top five best diving destinations February 13, 2015

A WEBSITE in Perú has named Jávea as the fourth best location in the world to go scuba-diving or snorkelling.

The Travel Section on describes the five best diving spots on the planet and puts Jávea ahead of Le Morne off the coast of Mauritius on its list. 

And the article places the Costa Blanca Seaside town on the same pedestal as Australia's Great Barrier Reef and the Blue Lagoon off the Mahebourg Bay in Polynesia, which come second and third respectively. 

The overall winner is Punta Maroma in México. Jávea's Portitxol Bay is singled out as being one of the most highly-recommended coastlines to explore the underwater world, with the website claiming that its 'clear waters' and 'huge quantity of marine life' attract 'hundreds of divers every year'.

The town's tourism department is thrilled with the recommendation, since diving and snorkelling are among the year-round leisure activities it hopes to promote to holidaymakers in a bid to keep the local economy alive during low season.

Good News with Spanish Mortgages February 12, 2015

Well it finally looks like there’s some good news with Spanish mortgages.  There are some great deals starting to be offered, one Spanish bank is actually offering a FIXED RATE mortgage, at very competetive interest rates.  To give you an idea:

10 years mortgage: 3.25%

20 years mortgage: 3.50%

30 years mortgage: 3.80%

A non tax resident can borrow up to 60% of either the valuation price OR the purchase price, whichever is the lower amount.  A tax resident can borrow up to 80%, providing its for their main residence.  Obviously these figures are only guidelines and all individual cases need to be studied and approved, in order for the bank to confirm terms, conditions and interest rates.

Off-shore workers who are looking for mortgages are also back on the banks radars too – providing they are not working in areas considered to be high risk.

Variable mortgage interest rates are starting from around Euribor + 2.40% and going down to EURIBOR +1%, depending on how many of the banks products you take out with them.

Banks set up fees are generally about 0.5%, with a standard minimum charge in the region of 750 euros.

So, if you would like to buy a property in Spain with a mortgage, then now’s the time to contact Vicens Ash Properties so that we can help you find the best deal, for you.

Javea Canal gets an extension January 27, 2015

Costa Blanca Markets January 13, 2015

Costa Blanca Markets


Visiting the local market in the town where you live or going on holiday is the way of life on the Costa Blanca and is an experience not to be missed.

Each town has a set day of the week for which a market is held every week. If you are holiday you want to get to your local town’s market to experience a taste of Spanish culture. Below we list the various locations and their respective market day of the week.

At the local markets you can buy all your fresh produce, from fruits and vegetables in season, fish, meat, cheese, olives, nuts, eggs, clothes, shoes, belts, handbags, kitchen utensils, music cds, carpets, paintings, also items like chillies which are not readily available at the local supermarkets.

The produce is of the highest quality and much fresher than at the supermarket. Prices should be cheaper than the local supermarkets so you will see plenty of local Spanish people at the market stocking up on fruit and veg for their weeks cooking.

The Sunday markets tend to be rastro markets selling antiques, bric-a-brac and clothes. There are additional rastro markets in Calpe on Wednesday, Benidorm on Friday and Jalon on Saturday.

These rastro markets are very popular and busy. Like our boot sales back in the United Kingdom if you wish to sell unwanted items like clothes that are too small, DVDs that you are finished with.

You need to arrive by six in the morning, the first shoppers usually arrive between eight and nine in the morning and it costs around €5 for a stand or stall.

If you are a visitor to any market please be vigilant with your belongings especially your handbag.

Keep your wallet in a secured bag and if possible keep your hand on it at all times. Pick pockets abound and work in teams, don’t become a victim and enjoy this unique shopping experience instead.

Monday Markets


Callosa d’En Sarria





Granja de Rocamora


La Nucia

Llocnou de Sant Jeroni






Real de Gandia

San Pedro del Pinatar

Santa Pola



Tuesday Markets

Alicante (Rastro)






Campo de Mirra



Jalon (Xalo)


Palma de Gandia




San Fulgencio




Wednesday Markets














Callosa de Segura

Calpe (Rastro)

El Campello


Guardamar del Segura

La Font d’en Carros

La Mata


Monforte del Cid








San Miguel de Salinas


Thursday Markets









Hondon de los Frailes

Javea (Xabia)

Llocnou de Sant Jeroni


Playe de Bellreguard



San Javier

Tavernes de Valldigna


Xixona (Jijona)

Friday Markets


Alfaz del Pi








Denia (Rastro)

El Verger


Gata de Gorgos

Granja de Rocamora

L’ Alfas del Pi

Monforte del Cid



Muro de Alcoi




Pilar de la Horadada

Rafol d’ Almunia




Saturday Markets









Callosa d’En Sarria



Castell de Castells




La Font d’En Carros

La Romana


Hondon de las Nieves




Playa Flamenca

San Vicente del Raspeig



Santa Pola

Xalo (Jalon) Rastro

Sunday Markets





El Campo de Guardamar


El Zoco

La Nucia


La Marina




How to Sell your Property in Javea, Spain. Tips brought to you by Experienced Professionals! November 17, 2014

If your thinking about selling your home You can increase your chances of selling significantly by doing a few simple things. Here are a few tips on the unexpected small details that could cost you a lot in the long run.

1- Check curb appeal

"Curb appeal" is so important. If a buyer wont get out of her agents car because she doesn't like the exterior of your home, you'll never get her inside.

-Do not choose a paint color that isn't common in your area or doesn't suite the style of your home. Painting your house green might be your style, but it is most definitely NOT Costa Blanca style!

- keep the pathways cleared.

- Mow the lawn.

- Trim your bushes.

- make sure the entrance is clear and the agent has room to park (even if it means leaving your car down the street)

2- ignoring your entryway. 

This is quite peculiar  here as a lot of  Spanish villas do not have a main front door.  But what is important is that the entryway to your home is clean and clear.  With no dead pot plants or broken door handles as this will only put the buyers on high alert to see what else has been let go in the house.

3- Kitchens and bathrooms.

Kitchens and bathrooms sell houses. Pay attention to clean and clear surfaces, buyers want to see the house not all your kitchen gadgets on the work top, or all your pills and potions on the side of the bathroom sink. HIDE IT ALL!  Oh, And keep the loo seat down!

4- Keeping old appliances.

Pay attention to your brand and quality of all appliances. If something is classic and well maintained that's always a good selling point. If you can't get something clean or only half works it needs replacing. 

5- clutter, toot and junk! Is it all needed?

One of the most important points, de personalise and de clutter. You wanted to move? So get it boxed up now! Pack up anything that is sitting on a worktop, table or any other flat surface  anything you haven't used in the last year? That goes too.  Give away what you can, throw away as much as possible and then pack the rest and get ready to move!

6- Don't Neglecting the small stuff.

Buyers have their eye on details that you might have forgotten.  You need to keep up with cleaning and maintenance.  Making sure light switches work, that electric gates work, pool lights and watering systems all run smoothly - it shows that the house has been cared for.

With 20 years of experience of selling property in Javea, we have seen how important the little details are to our buyers and not only do we want to make sure your properties look the best online and in person we want to sell your houses and doing these few little things will help us find you a Buyer much sooner. 

Get a NIE Number in one day at Jávea October 07, 2014

If you're buying a property in Javea, buying a car or if you need to open a Spanish bank account: you'll need a nie number. It's an identification number for (foreign) non-residents of Spain.

We can organise a nie number in one day so, contact us at least two weeks before visiting the Javea area and we'll tell you what paperwork and documents you'll need to provide and we'll get you an appointment with the foreign office and accompany you on the day. That very same day you'll get your nie number provisionally which you can start using straight away and then we'll collect the original for you which you can pick up at your convenience.

So, for 85€ get your NIE number in one day in Javea and we can also have it registered with Hacienda (Spanish tax authority) for an additional 50€ - don't hesitate to contact us for more information about having your NIE number registered today!

Javea property prices Vs. Seller expectation July 30, 2014

Everybody selling expects to achieve the best price for the sale of their
villa or apartment. Just like you'd want best price for that something on
the market. But when it's a reverse situation, it doesn't feel so fair does

I've spent the last six years feeling like the grim reaper. Javea real
estate went from inflated, amazingly high prices to sunken, amazingly low
prices and it's been my job to waft the smelling salts.

Vendor reaction to property valuation covers a wide spectrum of emotions.
I've learnt throughout this property slump how to listen, understand and
empathize. I've also learnt that real estate is a roller-coaster ride; you
get on and you have to grin and bear the ups and downs. Estate agents can
only advise vendors to get on or off for a price that suits the market
you're riding on and it's just that: advice. 

Now, if seller expectation is different and they choose to ignore agent
advice, it's no coincidence that sellers who take heed of given advice tend
to sell within a shorter time frame for a better price.

Property valuations are given to guide those wanting to sell. It's always a
good idea to have a few appraisals and take an average. You'll be able to
tell whether you've pitched the right price by the number of viewings your
property generates and by client comments. I know it's hard to cast
expectation aside but you can't base property prices on the property you're
hoping to buy, how much you purchased for or how much the refurbishment
cost. Property prices are based on the market you sell in and 2014 is
starting to recover. 

An interesting tale about “Why to choose Vicens Ash as you estate agent in Javea” July 29, 2014

We recently sold a villa to a UK couple who for the sake of this article I will refer to as Mr & Mrs D.  When I asked them:-  “why did you choose Vicens Ash as your estate agent to buy a villa in Javea?” they both laughed, look at each other and then told me that they had spent the last two years keeping an watchful eye on the market prices and being successful business owners themselves, they quite rightly so, considered themselves up to the challenge of finding a capable agent and the perfect get-away villa in Javea.

Mr & Mrs D have been coming to Javea for the last 15 years and have some very close friends living between Moraria and Javea.  Not wanting to burden their friends with their own quest for property in Spain, they trawled the internet, did some homework and contacted 3 well known agents. After two wasted trips “house hunting in Javea”, exasperatedly and as a last resort, they turned to one of their very good “amigos” in Javea.

The said “amigo”, being a retired accountant, took to the task very diligently and seriously, even making a request for a three week grace period, in order to allow him sufficient time to do local market research regarding estate agents in Javea.  With the requested time period granted, Mr & Mrs D sat back and waited patiently (read: went back to work and did not have any more free time to ponder the problem).

Much to the great surprise of Mr & Mrs D, after only 2 weeks of local market research, the good ol’ amigo from Javea rang them up and grandly announced that after having interviewed 8 neighbours, 2 local lawyers, the pool man, the cleaner, 5 friends from the “Bridge Club” and one of the local notary’s, the unanimous decision was that the long standing estate agency Vicens Ash, who have been in business since 1994, not only have one of the best sales track records, best selection of properties available but are also reputedly honest and up front.  Apparently, from the 18 people “interviewed”, all 18 of them had heard about us, 13 had dealt with us directly - not all had bought or sold, but all were very complimentary, 3 others had friends that spoke very highly of us and the other 2 had no dealings either directly or indirectly but knew who we were and where our office is.

Therefore now, to cut what’s becoming a rather long story, short.  In a nutshell, Mr & Mrs D contacted us and after an intense week of viewings and negotiations, have now successfully concluded their experience and have bought a property in Javea.

Now, I know its not quite on the levels of “Which?” magazine market research, but I think that the above goes a long way in explaining why so many people choose Vicens Ash to buy and sell property in Javea with.  Why don’t you make your own decision, and contact us now.


The first thing that most buyers do is their “homework” about buying a property in Javea, Spain.  The internet is trawled, friends are interrogated and books are bought a plenty.  All of those are great, and to be forewarned is to be fore-armed.  However, most buyers of Spanish property will find different variants of the same advice, turning what should be simple task to find out straightforward information into a sea of uncertainness and inexactitudes. 

Vicens Ash have over 20 years of experience in selling and buying property in the Javea area and we have our finger on the pulse of the property market at all times, enabling us to keep you up to date with the correct information all the time.

Taxes in Spain are like a never-ending rollercoaster ride, and true to form, the Spanish Government introduced in the first five months of 2014 a new rule to the existing 10% stamp duty.  This may mean that the stamp duty of your future property purchased in Javea could be more than the commonly assumed 10%.  Rest assured though, typically of taxes worldwide, it will never be less than the 10%!  

Contact Vicens Ash and we can advise you on how to find out the exact figure of stamp duty that you will be charged. 


You’d be surprised at how many clients contact Vicens Ash, knowing that they want to buy property in Javea but are not sure if they want a villa or an apartment.  Vicens Ash will advise and guide you, giving you all aspects of information regarding the two [completely different] types of property in Javea and what they both entail.

Don’t be fooled into thinking that the running costs of an apartment in Javea will be cheaper than a villa in Javea, some apartment complexes have a yearly maintenance charge that is the same as – or sometimes even more than – the average villa maintenance costs.

There are lots of contributing factors that will help you make up your mind, and by using the help and expertise of the Vicens Ash sales team, we can help you find your perfect Spanish property.

Spain : A Recovering Market July 15, 2014

Sure enough, like in any recession, there comes a long-awaited time when the real estate market starts to recover and it is with great pleasure and a big sigh of relief, that Vicens Ash are pleased to announce that that time has finally arrived.

With property prices in the Javea, Moraira, Denia and Altea areas starting to stabilize, now is the time to buy property in certain areas on the Costa Blanca, Spain.  

Most statistics show that a recession lasts for an average of 7 years and with property prices at an all-time low since 2007, that statistic may be proven right yet again.

Buying property in Spain is the dream for many people, either choosing to buy investment property, a home to retire to in the sun to or those choosing to move to Spain for a healthier lifestyle.

Whatever kind of property in Javea you are looking for, a villa, apartment or plot then look no further than the website of where you will find the best selection of property in Javea, Spain on the Costa Blanca.

Germany Wins the FIFA World Cup 2014 July 14, 2014

Germany beat Argentina 1-0 , to be the first european team to win the World Cup in South America.

Learning Spanish. July 07, 2014

Living in Spain, it is very easy in most tourist populated areas to think that you don't need to learn spanish. That you can survive just speaking English, German Or French as most locals have had to learn to speak these languages for the tourist trade. But here at Vicens Ash, we pride ourselves on our property network that we have built up in the last 20 Years. But a big part of this is being able to speak to our clients as well as our colleagues as best we can in their native language. 

There are definitely lots of benefits to learning Spanish as it is the second most spoken language in the world with 405 Million Native Speakers. As well as locals tend to really appreciate when you have taken the time to learn a little phrase to start a conversation with them. So for that reason we have decided that we would share a few useful spanish phrases with you! 

EnglishEspañol (Spanish)
WelcomeBienvenido (sg) Bienvenidos (pl)
¡Diga! ¡Dígame! ¿Sí? ¿Bueno? ¡Hola! ¿Aló? (on phone)
How are you?

I'm fine, thanks. And you?
¿Cómo está usted? (frm) ¿Cómo estás? (inf)
Bien gracias, ¿y usted? (frm) Bien gracias, ¿y tú? (inf)
Long time no see¡Cuánto tiempo! ¡Tanto tiempo sin verte!
What's your name?

My name is ...
¿Cómo te llamas? (inf)
¿Cómo se llama Usted? (frm)
Me llamo ..., Mi nombre es ...

Where are you from?

I'm from ...
¿De dónde eres? (inf) ¿De dónde es usted? (frm)

Soy de ...

Pleased to meet youMucho gusto Encantado
Good morningBuenos días
Good afternoon/eveningBuenas tardes
Good night/eveningBuenas noches
GoodbyeAdiós, Hasta luego, Hasta la vista, Hasta mañana
Good luck¡Buena suerte!
Cheers/Good health!¡Salud!
Have a nice day¡Que pase un buen día!
Bon appetit¡Buen provecho! ¡Buen apetito! ¡Que aproveche!
Bon voyage¡Buen viaje!
I don't understandNo entiendo / No comprendo
Please speak more slowlyPor favor hable más despacio
Please write it down¿Puede escribirlo, por favor?
Do you speak English?¿Habla Usted inglés? (frm) ¿Hablas (tú) inglés? (inf)
Do you speak Spanish?

Yes, a little
¿Habla usted español? (frm) ¿Hablas español? (inf)
Sí, hablo un poquito de español, Sí, un poco
How do you say ... in Spanish?¿Cómo se dice ... en español?
Excuse me¡Perdón! ¡Perdone! ¡Discúlpe!
How much is this?¿Cuánto cuesta? ¿Cuánto cuesta esto?
Sorry¡Perdón! ¡Perdone! ¡Lo siento!
Thank you
Gracias / Muchas gracias
De nada / No hay de qué
Where's the toilet?¿Dónde están los aseos
¿Dónde están los sanitarios?
¿Dónde está el baño?
¿Dónde está el cuarto de baño?
This gentleman/lady
will pay for everything
Este hombre/caballero pagará por todo
Esta mujer/dame pagará por todo
Would you like to
dance with me?
¿Querría bailar conmigo? (frm) 
¿Querrías bailar conmigo? (inf)
¿Quisiera bailar conmigo? (frm)
¿Quisieras bailar conmigo? (inf)
I love youTe amo / Te quiero
Get well soonQue te mejores / Que te mejores pronto
¡Recupérate pronto! Pronta recuperación
Leave me alone!¡Déjeme en paz!
¡Ayúdame! ¡Socorro! ¡Auxilio!
Call the police!¡Llame a la policía!
Merry Christmas
and Happy New Year
¡Feliz Navidad y próspero año nuevo!
¡Feliz Año Nuevo!
Happy Easter¡Felices Pascuas!
Happy Birthday¡Feliz cumpleaños!
One language
is never enough
Un idioma nunca es suficiente
Un solo idioma nunca es suficiente

Today we thought we would share a little bit of History about Javea. July 02, 2014

The area was first inhabited in prehistoric times, 30,000 years ago by cave dwellers on Montgó. Subsequent residents have included Stone and Bronze-age peoples, Romans, Greeks, Phoenicians, Visigoths, Germanic, Carthaginians, and Moors. Roman fishing boats used the port, and there is evidence that dates the Roman occupation of Xàbia to the 2nd century BC, it makes Xàbia the oldest known Roman site on the coast with a commercial port for fish and minerals.

In the 6th century AD. Christian Visigoth monks, came to Xàbia and founded the monastery of Sant Martí, which likely gave its name to the cape in the area named Cap San Martí. Hermenegild, son of the Visigoth king Leovigild of Toledo, sought refuge in the Monastery after angering his father by marrying a Christian girl. When his father's troops arrived to arrest him all but one monk fled to Portichol; Hermenegild and the old monk were killed.[2] Several people with Visigoth names still live in the area.

There is little left of the Moors other than some inscribed gravestones and ceramics, although they were here from about 714 AD until they were expelled in 1609. The hermitage of Popol, dates to the 14th century.

Spanish football team lose in world cup June 19, 2014

Spain's football team lose to Chile in 2014 world cup. After Holland's thrashing, they didn't come through and will play one more game and be sent home. So much for being the world champions :-(

MABS Cancer Support Group in Javea need help at charity shop July 25, 2013

Yet another urgent appeal, this time for the MABS charity furniture shop in JaveaWe are desperately short of people to help in the charity furniture shop . One day recently , there was only one lady looking after the shop all day! She is so dedicated, as are all those who help out When They can but it's not fair ! Between us we can make light work of it . So many people are generous enough to donate to our cause Their furniture and it's such a shame we do not have enough people volunteering to make light work of it . Please, if you have a few hours to spare, any morning a week we'd be happy to keep you occupied . You do not have to be strong just happy to spend a morning helping Those who help others . Thank you!

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