Research - Gathering Information On Your Favoured Location
Gather as much information on moving to Spain as possible when starting your relocation journey.
Online research and reading magazines and books will give you a wide range of facts and opinions to form a realistic idea of what to expect.
Online forums are a good source of information and reading these forums will give you an idea of the complaints and negative aspects of living in Spain that regularly re-occur among forum members. Bureaucracy and red tape, along with too much paperwork are the main complaints often listed. On the other hand, you will find frequent praise for the health services and the Spanish education system. When reading forums, do remember you are reading member’s personal accounts and opinions, and your own experience may vary.
Another way to expand your knowledge before making a concrete move is to visit an overseas property exhibition in your area. This allows you to speak with people in the know without actually having to get on a flight to Spain. Write down any questions you have, as eventually you will want answers to these from those living in your chosen area or an experienced property agent when you finally make your first definite step.
Some Questions to Ask Yourself about Your Ideal Property and Possible Answers:
Question: What is my preferred area?
The Costa Blanca or Costa Calida.
Question: Which towns interest me most?
Javea, Denia, La Zenia or Villamartin.
Question: Is it important to for us to be by the sea?
No – We would not like the summer crowds and would prefer a property a kilometre or two away from the very busy areas.
Question: What type of property most interests you? An apartment in a block, a detached villa, a townhouse or other?
Question: How many bedrooms and bathrooms will you need?
At least three bedrooms and an extra guest bathroom would be perfect.
Question: Are you willing to take on an older property that needs work?
No – We would not be able to do reforms ourselves and I feel we do not know enough Spanish to deal with contractors.
Question: Do you want to be among expats or does a more Spanish way of life appeal?
Ideally, we would like a mix of both.
Question: Is having your own pool important?
We would like our own pool for the grandchildren when they visit, but as long as they have access to a nearby communal or club pool, they would be happy.
Question: Is a sea view important to you?
No, a mountain view would be fine.
Question: Is it important that the property be rentable for holiday lets?
No, we will not be renting it out.
Question: Are there any other requirements as regards the property?
It must be in a location where I am able get a good broadband connection and International TV.
Question: Is it near enough to the airport?
Yes, Alicante is just over an hour away, and the town is well connected with airport transfer companies and some public transport options.
Some Questions to Ask Yourself When You Have Narrowed Down Your Property Search
Question: Is it important that you are within walking distance of the beach?
Not really, because we plan on owning a car – but it would be nice to be able to walk.
Question: How far can I comfortably live from local shops?
I need small shops where I can buy my daily needs within walking distance – I do not want to have to get the car out every time I need bread or milk.
Question: Is it important that I am near to bars and restaurants?
Yes, we would like a few bars or restaurants within walking distance as we don’t want to have to get a taxi every time we go for a night out.
Question: Are you comfortable with the medical facilities in the area?
Yes, this town has a hospital just 10 minutes from the centre with an A&E department.
Question: Is there anything else important to us?
Access to local transport, off-road parking, and children living in the area for when the grandkids visit.
Read more of our 8 part Moving To Spain Guide: