A Refreshing Change: An Ethical Spanish Property Developer


Whilst many buyers in Spain are currently price and discount focussed when looking for a distressed or discounted property other considerations should be taken into account.

If you buy a property that forms part of a large development with many vacant units you may get it at a very good price but what are the longer-term realities?

Firstly, all apartment blocks need maintenance and this maintenance is paid for by the owners. Do not expect a bank selling a distressed property who also owns all other uninhabited apartments in your block to stump anything  toward these maintenance costs it just will not happen. This means that the overall maintenance of your complex over time will deteriorate until all units are filled and a community of owners created.

If electric and services are being supplied still via the current owners who maybe the banks again if they stop paying their share it could adversely affect you.

There is still a lot to be said for serious buyers to consider buying in developments where the original builder is committed in the long term to the project rather than offloading as much of it and any of it as quickly as they can.

Never has this been more highlighted than when I recently visited Samara Resort Marbella,  a development of the Hines group. Hines amazingly enough and unheard of in my experience when it became clear the urban issues in Marbella meant no development could be sure their development would finally receive a first habitation licence immediately offered to refund staged payments already made by buyers. More than this unlike other developers they refused to market the properties at all until the first licence was obtained and legally correct and development was fully finished. This delayed sale of any property for 2 years.

This level of ethics is rarely seen in Spain. Hines fully completed their luxury development with no contribution of monies from buyers buying off plan. Hines now pays the community fees proportionally to the unsold units and will continue to do so until all units are sold ensuring anyone who buys now does not end up surrounded by something that looks more like Beirut than a luxury complex.

There are developments ,on the other hand where a communal heating and air conditioning system is in place has left those few owners who have moved in with neither of the above due to the developer starting to not supporting his share for unsold units.

Hines are not heavily discounting their units as are some but for buyers wanting a high quality property built by a company who has 100% committed to keeping to their ethical business beliefs and supporting their brand; despite the fact that clearly means it is currently costing them money and eating heavily into profits not yet made; they can be highly recommended.

A superb development operating with transparency and a genuine care of their clients

There would be no requirement for programmes like Paradise Lost if all businesses had taken the same approach and many of the issues Spain now has would never have happened.

My faith in human nature is restored.



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