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Long Term Renting in Spain

Long Term Rentals in Spain There are many reasons why more and more people are looking for long term rentals in Spain. Maybe to escape the dreary weather in their home country for six months or so, sometimes to spend a year or so here before deciding whether to buy and make a life here, or possibly to look for work and relocate permanently.

As a rental agency, we can see that the number of enquiries for this type of property has been steadily increasing over the past two years and now demand far outstrips supply.

Many owners are still holding out for the higher incomes they can receive in the summer, wanting only to rent for a longer period between October and March. However, as the number of holiday properties increase, the likelihood of each owner filling high season periods decreases. Obviously, this depends on the quality of the property, but in general this is what we are seeing - especially for 2 bed apartments.

Until now, it has been mainly the Spanish owners who prefer to rent long term - guaranteeing themselves a year round income, whilst the British owners who generally like to use the property themselves, prefer short term holiday lets. However, trends are changing and we are now seeing an increase in foreigners renting out their properties on a long term basis. Nevertheless, there are still not enough properties to go around.

Spain no longer offers a cheap lifestyle. Those looking for long term rental property must be aware that they are going to pay anything between 800 - 1200 Euros for a villa with a pool, plus bills and generally rubbish collection costs on top. Most of our enquiries come from people with a budget of around 500 Euros - many even less. This is not realistic for the type of property they are looking for. Based on our experience in the market in the Jalon Valley and surrounding area, for 500 Euros, you are likely to get a 2 or 3 apartment in a block with no parking facilities.

Villas with pools are still few and far between, and many of those that are owned by the Spanish are far removed from what you may expect.

They can be in remote areas where you need wellies just to get to the car, they are often damp, dark and dingy, the furniture provided should have been binned 30 years ago, there is no heating, and the owners will let themselves in whenever they please. You are quite likely to see the owner peering through the window, hovering around in the garden, or rummaging in their garages/store rooms during your stay there. It is quite usual for Spanish owners to keep some of their own property in a locked room, a garage or a store room whilst tenants are in the property. Despite the fact that we try to explain to our owners that tenants like their privacy, and try to impress upon them that they should at least make an appointment if they must enter the property, they rarely listen.

It may seem a very romantic notion to live in a secluded villa in the campo, backed by mountain ranges, and collecting wood by day to light the fire at night. In reality, the novelty soon wears off as it often not practical for day to day living. We had a couple last winter renting a lovely villa in the campo in Benissa. Regardless of the fact that we strongly advised them to hire or buy a car, they didn't - and yet the village of Benissa was at least a half hour walk. After two months, unable to find work and fed up with the lonely life in the campo, they gave up and went back to the UK. They are not the only ones, many take on a long term rental and give up before the end of the contract.

Relocation is a big step, and looking for the right property is a major consideration. It is sad to see those who had high hopes when first arriving having their lives made miserable by moving into unsuitable accommodation. It can completely change your outlook of life in Spain - whereas things can look very different when you are happy in your surroundings. Once you have signed a contract, if you vacate before the end of that contract, you will lose your deposit - which is usually 2 months rent up front, so it is not so easy to just move on - that's if you can find somewhere to move on to!

We are now encouraging our property owners to look at long term rentals as opposed to holiday rentals. Although Spain is still one of the most popular destinations, holidaymakers are now travelling further afield, the sheer volume of properties available mean that owners may fill as little as 6 weeks per year, and for those who need to cover a mortgage, renting long term means a steady income.

If you have a property that you would like to rent, or would like further advice, please contact us


By: Debbie Cooper


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