When someone wants to sell a property in Spain 99 times out of 100 they set the price higher than what they are willing to except, with the rare exception of those properties priced to sell immediately. The financial crisis in Spain is (mostly) over and the number of highly motivated sellers has dwindled or have already been evicted by their mortgage lenders.
Here are 5 tips to get a lower purchase price with dealing with sellers in Spain:
- Study the market and the price of similar properties. With property portals like idealista.com you can compare the price with other properties in the area. If you compile some data on the price of very similar properties and what they are selling for you can present it to the seller to make it clear to him his price needs to be reduced.
- Show that you have purchasing power. Sellers are more motivated to take offers if they know the process will be quick and painless. If you don’t need a mortgage to purchase the property, say so. If you do need a mortgage but should qualify easily you can show your income. You can also get pre-approved at a Spanish bank for the mortgage before shopping around. Keep in mind that no loan is totally approved until the property has been inspected by the bank.
- Find any possible defects or what’s missing in the house. Again, if other similar properties have benefits that this property is missing like a fireplace, bigger yard, more space, etc. make that clear to the seller. Also check the property registration to see if it has any outstanding debt and if the building has passed all inspection. If it is a chalet (house, not apartment) you can also call a property inspector to check out the house and point out any major deficiencies that will cost money to fix.
- Find out how long the property has been on the market. Currently any property on the market for more that 6-9 months in a major city like Madrid is too long. You can compile statistics on the average time on market in the area and show the owner his property is overdue for a sale.
- Find a property being offered by several agencies. Yes, actually look for middlemen. If a property is being shown by several agencies and you make an offer through one of them, they will be more motivated to convince the seller to reduce the price so they can score their commission.
Good luck finding a property in Spain!