latest info on Spain - depressing...............

Do you have a query on how to get things done in Andalucia, where to find things, who to call? Find out by posting and hear about others experiences.
katy
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Postby katy » Wed Apr 09, 2008 12:58 pm

Yup, good points :)

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ICCSL
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Recession

Postby ICCSL » Wed Apr 09, 2008 1:13 pm

One of the reasons why the Spaniards are not as aware as one might believe of what has gone on in the construction and property sales area is that they do not know, and could not conceive of, what a Brit will do to a Brit.

Many of the illegal builds have been sold by Brit agents and developers to a wholly Brit market. In a lot of cases those agents and developers have known from day one that the houses were illegal. A Spanish agent relies on his English speaking staff to translate and if those salespeople are on commission only relevant parts of the transaction are "lost" in translation. A Spaniard would not believe that the buyers of these properties did not know their status because if a Spaniard is buying something illegal he knows in advance what he is doing and can make an educated choice.

Hence the Spaniards´possible ignorance of what is going on would make sense from the above mentioned scenario. I have always said that if a Brit is going to be ripped off in Spain it will probably be a Brit who perpetrates the ripping off.

Naturally most Spaniards are aware of the corruption, whether they admit to it or not, because it has been going on since time began. The old farmers in our area had a panic attack when the peseta changed over to the euro because of the millions of pesetas under the mattress and in the wardrobes that had been squirreled away in tax evasion. Large amounts of this black money got poured into construction so it is not only the Brits who are losing out, they are too because now the Spaniards are finding it difficult to extract the black pesetas out of their construction investment.

Has no one noticed the amount of Rural Hotels, built in the middle of nowhere that don't seem to have a client in sight? These were built with black money from the changeover and assisted by grants. There is then a five year wait before the hotels can be sold (unless the owner is willing to pay back the grant money), the hotel is sold and then everyone gets their money out in euros.

The current situation in Spain is something that I have never seen or experienced before and it is seriously my opinion that there is a high possibility of another civil war, maybe in a year or two years down the line. Mr Bean, during the elections, would not admit that there was a crisis however, yesterday he did admit to there being a "small" crisis. I wonder when and if he will admit that this is possibly the biggest crisis Spain has ever had.
Tina

katy
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Postby katy » Wed Apr 09, 2008 1:43 pm

I agree there are many Brit on Brit scams but you have to blame the spanish too, they were the ones who sold a lot of the illegals in the countryside and knew exactly what the situation was, there are many mom and pop spanish developers out there too. Many of the Brit agents did not know anything about the system and what was illegal, some of them had just arrived and set themselves up as property agents.

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gloom

Postby julian » Wed Apr 09, 2008 2:25 pm

thank you Jake, a few words of wisdom at last !!

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Postby Jool » Wed Apr 09, 2008 2:36 pm

No disagreement with what Jake says at all but there is a knock on effect in Spain for every business as so much of the economy is related to construction......and if less people have money there is knock on effect for every other business, especially restaurants etc.....

plus for those of us living here with a mortgage our mortgages are increasing faster and higher than ever before, along with the cost of all sorts of other essentials such as gas. There is a real air of unsettledness around that has not been around before.........and cost are increasing so much on everything at a rate never experienced in spain before. For the last few weeks literally every time I fill the car with diesel it has gone up........

So my original post was not just about the value of individual´s houses but the overall picture. You maybe more protected from it in the Del Sol but here in Almeria it is pretty depressed.........

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Postby Alan-LaCala » Wed Apr 09, 2008 2:56 pm

Jake

Go to the top of the class and award yourself a gold star.

Alan
Remember that everything that Fred Astaire did, Ginger Rogers did too; except she did it backwards and wearing high heels!

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positive

Postby julian » Wed Apr 09, 2008 3:05 pm

Jool, all of what you say is true for wherever you live, in whatever country at the moment, not just almeria, nor just Spain, havn´t the prices gone up in the UK? havn´t the mortgages gone up in the UK?aren´t the restaurants in the uk quieter? we have all had a few years of making easy money in whatever business, but now we all have to tighten are belts, but it doesn´t mean we all have to make ourselves ill by being so negative and so depressed...life really isn´t so bad , nor so difficult, we live in a country that many people could only dream of ever living in, so decide tonight that when you wake up tomorrow you will have a different, more positive, and grateful attitude to life.try it......

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Postby JAR1972 » Wed Apr 09, 2008 3:14 pm

Perhaps it's different on the costas, I'm not sure, but my personal experience inland has been very different to what Tina is suggesting.

After 3 years of trying to buy a country place (without being ripped off or ending up with something illegal) I have viewed tens of properties and dealt with countless agents and corredores all over Cadiz province. All of them Andaluz. The pattern always seems to be the same.

Firstly the price is always over-cooked, and if it is reasonable to start with always shoots up quickly once the seller (eyes all lit up with pound signs no doubt) finds out a guiri is interested. In one case a property I viewed tripled in asking price overnight.

Secondly the details for the legal situation of all the properties I have looked at has never matched the reality. There has always been a catch. Sometimes this is immediately obvious, but in one case I spent 6 months chasing paperwork to then discovered the big white elephant, which had been sitting in the corner of the room all along.

I no longer think it's an unfortunate co-incidence that every spanish agent/corredor (bar one) I have dealt with has been less than honest and on the make. I've got to the point now where I just assume this to be the case and believe nothing I'm told until I can verify otherwise.

Having said all of this, I think this kind of thing is a small price to pay for everything good about life here and it's not going to stop me trying to find somewhere. It will just take a bit longer than planned (like most things in Andalucia).

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Postby Jool » Wed Apr 09, 2008 3:42 pm

Well I have never had any years of making easy money!! I am only speaking for Spain and since I am working well over 50 hours per week every week and not receiving payment for it I feel entitled to have a moan. I have been working for 5 months without a salary now and can only hope that my loyalty and continued work means the promises that money will come are not false! We are not all people who got rich years ago and can afford the CDS life of leisure and for me and many others in Spain this year (I can´t speak for elsewhere in the world as I don´t live there) is a lot worse. Nor am I depressed but I find the official outlook depressing.

Yes I am very glad I am not in the UK but living here now is only fine if you are in an urbanisation where no further development can take place and all is hunky dory and that is not my situation........we are in a fully legal property but one where the Authorities have decided we now need to become an urbanisation and we have to pay for the privilege.........a minimum of 40000 euros up to a possible 110000 per household are the only two figures mentioned so far. Apparently our garden could be taken away to be built upon if we do not or cannot pay leaving us with insufficient land to make our 20 year old house legal (as the permitted ratio of build to land would have gone) thus leading to possible demolition, all because we live near the coast and a developer will be more rewarding than a few houses dotted about, despite their existence for many years.

So no I don´t feel particularly grateful right now as it is all total unknowns and we have no money to even buy a cup of coffee!!!!! Maybe you could imagine that for a minute instead of moralising and lecturing.

It does not matter what kind of a paradise anywhere is if you have no money to pay your way, through no fault of your own......after months of no income I am out of gratitude to the sun and a laid back way of life that has the side effect of meaning everyone is way too casual and contracts in reality mean nothing as it costs so much to enforce them and takes so long the ones at fault are long disappeared with all their assets....... yes I do feel bitter, we worked very hard to get to Spain and paid the proper price of our house on paper.........we are now under threat of losing our house via 2 different routes due to the current economic and political situation in Spain, things which could not happen elsewhere as it would not be legal to take the spanish approach in either case.

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Postby scarlet » Wed Apr 09, 2008 4:04 pm

There are many complacent people on here, maybe they are the renters among us. If you own property here and want to sell, and you cant, this is very frustrating. JOOL, there are many people floating about pretending that life is fantastic, when in reality it is not, how can life be so fantastic when there are so many problems here. maybe we should all bury our heads in the sand and pretend everything is great. spain has huge problems now and ahead, as does the uk,
Jool. I am sure your luck will change, if your business is not making money, close it, I dont know your circumstances, but if you have a shop, get rid of it as you are probably paying a ridiculous rent, which will never enable you to make a living worth having. anyone thinking of starting a business here with premises must be nuts, all along the coast bars and restaurants are suffering, the only people here who are safe are people receiving a pension, even then they have made a loss because of the exchange rate. carping on about how you own a property here and the uk is stupid, as we really dont care, many of us did own property in the uk, and have lived the good life for a long time now, and have not had to pay out and suffer the uk. Bragging doesnt help those suffering OK

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negative

Postby julian » Wed Apr 09, 2008 4:19 pm

ok, continue with your usual posts...reading through your daily posts is enough to make even Mr happy suicidal.

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Postby j4mes » Wed Apr 09, 2008 4:26 pm

I don't think it's necc fair to suggest those in rented accomodation can afford to be complacent! I have been renting for nearly three Years since arriving, and as a result spent more than 70,000 euros that is neither an investment nor a tax deductable expense!!!!

The unrest in the market, increasing interst rate (which has doubled since I got here alone) and over valued property has prevented me from buying somewhere. This brings it's own set of problems. I have moved 3 times, rented unfurnished places and then furnished (thus paying storage as well as rent!!) and more importantly Mrs A feels "un secure" not having roots down in a property.

Re Julian's comment about state of mind....I think what he is getting at is that if you're in the sh*t, you're in the sh*t. You then have choice whether to be miserable and in the sh*t or positive, grateful and happy in the sh*t......And it is just a choice of how you want to be.....The law of attraction/abundance/personal well being/stress etc etc (that I know a lot of you don't believe in) says that remaining in an "above the line state" i,e living out of positive emotions rather than negative ones is the way out of the sh*t.......

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Postby bob » Wed Apr 09, 2008 4:31 pm

Jool wrote:

“...and since I am working well over 50 hours per week every week and not receiving payment for it I feel entitled to have a moan. I have been working for 5 months without a salary now and can only hope that my loyalty and continued work means the promises that money will come are not false!”

I take that sentence to mean that you work for someone else and have been promised that payment will come and not, as Scarlet suggests, that you are self-employed.

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Postby scarlet » Wed Apr 09, 2008 4:46 pm

J4MES. I didnt mean those renting can be complacent, its just some of the comments made are not right, and what I meant was that if you are renting you are not going to have the same worries as buyers. I wish I was a renter, you should consider yourself lucky, I would have gone months ago.
BOB. As I said I dont know anybodys circumstances, I just assumed that Jools ran his own business.
The mention of civil war is a little scary, I hope that things in Spain dont go against the foreigner, with all the euro mps talk, its great if they acheive something, If they dont we could all be left in a very nasty situation, and the racism etc could get worse than it is now.,

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Postby katy » Wed Apr 09, 2008 4:48 pm

Jool, really feel for you and now it seems you are caught up in a land grab style situation, hope things improve.

Wasting your time on here though, everything bad that happens to you in andalucia is your own fault. The phrase "I'm alright Jack" is alive around this forum. Not just in your area though think many on the CDS have or will have problems, not much use I know.

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Postby Jool » Wed Apr 09, 2008 4:55 pm

Dear Bob,

I am registered autonomo so both things apply to me, I work for myself and for others, but no income from anywhere for the last few months. I agree with James about negative energy etc but after a 5th month with no money coming in and now no savings left, its pretty hard to keep that up and against the doom and gloom even harder........I know its hard to believe but I do literally mean NO income.......

Its a shame there does not seem room or compassion for genuine problems here Julian, I don´t often share personal things about my life. I truly hope I am wrong but after several years of living here and a good few coming and going before then I have never known the general atmosphere and outlook to be or feel like this..........

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Postby Jool » Wed Apr 09, 2008 4:58 pm

Hi Katy,

Thank you, we posted at the same time. But thanks for your supportive post and I agree with you.......I have never been in a situation like this before where I cannot work my way out of it as work options are limited as people are contracting not expanding everywhere.

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Postby Cassandra » Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:11 pm

Jool, sincerely hope you manage to get some of that money back. I know what it's like to have to chase, I ended up writing some off to experience after, just, managing to cover my expenses (autonomo, etc) but then ended up with more costs because of an incompetent gestor.

This month, after finally finding minimal work with a language school in March, I have again had to chase for payment and when I finally got it discovered they have paid me the princely sum of 12cents a kilometre for using my own car :? Hardly worth the bother of turning up but even a small sum of money helps at the moment!

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Postby Bongtrees » Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:17 pm

I don't agree that the blame should be laid at the door of a Brit on Brit scam re the millions of property sales over the past what 20 years? seems a glib idea to me

How many developments are wholly British owned? I doubt there are any.

Therefore there was Spanish involvement and from from all sides.... from the architect to the builders merchant to the LAWYER, to the councils to the police, who all watched these properties being constructed surely THEY are all Spanish.

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Postby Bongtrees » Wed Apr 09, 2008 5:57 pm

Jools, I am sorry to hear of your present problems.

If you have not done it already do a baja for the autonomos I think you can even download the docs online at seg,social web site or go in tomorrow and do it.

Go in and speak to someone in your bank about your mortgage, ask for help in delaying payments or paying a small amount per month, reminding them that the last thing they want is another unsaleable property. If you do nothing I expect you know that after missing 3 payments you are reported to the Bank of Spain and legal process commenced and the account closed
so you cannot pay anything into it.

In the current climate the Spanish offload as much as possible converting stuff to cash to meet their commitments, so for instance If you have 2 good cars, sell both and buy a cheap one.


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