When it comes to choosing a house or apartment, we mentally make a list of requirements for our future property: the layout of the apartment, its orientation, how close it is to the sea – and many other minor details, right down to the size of the living room and the view from the window or terrace. Those investing in property in Marbella are advised to pay attention to some of the less obvious things, which in the future will affect the comfort of your stay.
When you first sit down to compile a list of initial criteria for your desired property, it is important to bear in mind that in Spain, the property area includes a balcony or terrace, corridors and stairwell (when it comes to an apartment building) and parking. As a result, the actual area of the apartment or house is often less than that indicated in the advertisement- which is why it is important to clarify with your agent what the built sqm of a property is, as well as terrace/garden.
The second important point that needs to be investigated before touching down on Marbella soil and starting your search – what is the immediate area like in which you plan to purchase a property, and how often are you going to come? Would you consider renting out your property whilst you were not using it?. Many areas on the Costa del Sol are lovely in summer, but in November, it may be that life in them has stopped and the nearest open restaurant is further away than expected. On the other hand, by choosing a quiet place where the spring is quite deserted, in the summer you could be in the midst of the tourist boom.
Once you have decided on an area you would like to buy in, look at the surrounding buildings. A newcomer will find it difficult to understand how the area is developing, so it’s not worth the risk of buying real estate located in the vicinity of half-empty or unfinished buildings and complexes. Perhaps the construction will soon be completed, but it may well be that “unfinished” indicates latent defects which are unknown to a newcomer, but well known to locals who do not want to settle there.
Particular caution is necessary if in the same house or neighbourhood a large number of other apartments are for sale. Large-scale sales always have their reasons, for example, it may be that after some time new construction will begin nearby, which will bring a lot of inconvenience, and then completely block the view of the sea or the nearby park.
If you do not buy a detached house in the countryside, but opt for a house or apartment in a residential area such as Puerto Banus or Nueva Andalucia, always be sure to check check the maintenance of public areas: swimming pools, garden or lawn, landscaping. The more well-kept – the higher the monthly community fees will be. Before making a purchasing decision, is to ask about the so-called rules of the community in which you live. Indeed, in each complex home-owners hold a majority vote to set their own rules. For example, in some complexes playing musical instruments or keeping house pets is banned. In others, the appearance of the property is strictly regulated, even down to the colour of the windows and flower beds in front of the house. These rules can in principle be challenged in court, but it is much easier to learn in advance about the existing constraints – and possibly consider other options.
We recommend having a thorough overview of the different areas from Estepona to Marbella, so you can inform yourself and be confident in your decision, when it comes to choosing the right property in Marbella.