The Costa del Sol -and Mijas particularly, is an ideal place to start your search when looking to buy a home in Spain, be it as your next permanent residence, as a holiday home, or an investment property.
Charming, peaceful, relaxed, and iconic are just a few of the words often used to describe Mijas, and rightly so. Set atop the warm Spanish hills in the sun-soaked Costa del Sol, vistas of mountains and sea to every side, and only a short drive to crystal clear waters, sandy beaches, and the hustle and bustle of lively Spanish cities, Mijas is an oasis of calm and relaxation -the best of both worlds when making your move to Spain. You really can’t ask for more.
And while the thought of living in Mijas is quite literally the definition of perfection for many looking to move to Spain, the thought of buying a home overseas can be a bit daunting. That’s where Mijas Properties can help. From beginning to end, we’re here to make the process of finding, buying, and moving to a new home in Mijas an easy and enjoyable experience.
The Home-Buying Process
The first step in buying a home in Mijas is finding the perfect property for you. Start by asking yourself some questions like: are you looking to live here year-round, are searching for holiday home for seasonal use, or are you thinking of a buy-to-let investment opportunity? Take stock of your budget, too, and make a list of everything that comes to mind when you picture your new home in Mijas. Don’t be afraid to include specifics (like number of rooms, property features, location, etc) or simply emotions or lifestyle ideas you envision when you picture your perfect home in Spain (like lots of barbecues, watching sunsets, sunbathing, hosting guests at home, etc). All this information is very helpful to our sales agents, as it helps them understand your personal preferences, to ensure they only show you properties that tick your property wishlist. A few legal checks and some paperwork afterwards, all with the help of your Mijas Properties real estate agent at hand, so you don’t get lost along the way, and you’ll be ready to move to Spain and start living your life in the sun!
First things first, keep in mind that there are some legal restrictions that can come into play when buying a property in Spain. EU residents are free to buy a home and move to Spain, live, and work here for as long as you like. Those who hold residency from outside the EU though, including British nationals, are only permitted to live in Spain for 90 days at a time out of any 180-day period and are not permitted to work without a visa. If that’s the case for you, you can still enjoy everything living in Mijas has to offer! A holiday home that you can live in part-time and be rented out while you’re not in Spain is a great way to enjoy your new home in Mijas, after all!
Choosing Your Mijas Property
Once you have a general idea of what you’re looking for, an online search can help you narrow things down even more. Browse through a few real estate agency’s websites to get a feel for homes for sale and make a mental note of any new features, areas, or must-haves that you come across.
Make sure you select the right real estate agency too. One that has local knowledge and a physical (not just online) presence and is experienced in buying and selling in Mijas. Meeting with them in- person or through an online conference will give you a good sense of who they are and what they can offer, too. Make sure you’re happy with them on a personal as well as professional level -they should take time to get to know you and you should feel comfortable sharing your ideas, wants, needs, and budget with them and that they don’t make you feel rushed or pressured into buying a property.
If you’ll be financing your purchase with the help of one, now’s the time to start doing your research on securing a mortgage in Spain. Your real estate agent should be able to offer help and advice on this part of the home-buying process. You’ll get a clearer picture of your budget by looking at mortgage options now, as well as a better understanding of the home-buying process in Spain as a whole. Don’t forget to share your honest budget limits with your real estate agent once you know it
– you don’t want your estate agent to show you a home you love only to find out your mortgage won’t quite reach the purchase price!
Your real estate agent can help you then come up with a list of homes that meet around 80% of your dream home requirements -if there’s a definite must-have or deal-breaker feature, communicate this to your real estate agent early so that these can be accounted for! Then, it’s time for viewings, the best way to get a real feel for the property and the area. To get the most well-rounded picture of what it would be like to live there, visit during the time you’d usually be in Spain (if you’re buying a holiday home) or in the off-peak or non-tourist season (if you’ll be living in Mijas year-round). Give yourself plenty of time to explore every home, check all the features you’re interested in, and get an overall sense of the space as well as the neighbourhood. Eat at the local cafe, talk to the locals, take a walk to the nearest supermarket, drive down to the beach or up into the mountains to explore everything on offer… it’s not just about the house itself, but the lifestyle you’ll lead when living there.
Making an Offer
Most homes in Spain are not bought at the listed price, so once you’ve found your perfect home in Mijas, you’ll want to make an offer on it. Your real estate agent can help you determine the best number to go in at and will negotiate with the seller on your behalf. Counter-offers on the seller’s part are also relatively commonplace, so don’t worry if your offer isn’t accepted -simply work with your real estate agent to come up with another offer you’re happy to have presented to the seller instead. Then, once a price is agreed, you’ll pay a deposit and sign a reservation contract with the help of your lawyer who can also help you get your N.I.E. (Foreigner Identity Number) and open a Spanish bank account, both of which will be required before you’re able to purchase a home in Spain.
At this point, the home-buying process is mostly a bureaucratic one. Your lawyer will go through a process to make sure all legalities are in place like making sure the home is legally owned, is free of debts that would otherwise be carried over to you, and that the paperwork required by the bank is in order. Once all that has cleared, it’s a straightforward matter to transfer funds to the seller, sign the deed in front of a notary, and receive the keys to your new home in Spain. Congratulations! You’re a homeowner in beautiful Mijas, Costa del Sol!
Ready to get started on finding your home, holiday home, or investment home in Mijas? There’s no better place to start than with a search through the extensive portfolio of properties we have available at Mijas Properties! Take a look online or give us a call (or send us an email) with your wants and needs and we’ll do all the work for you to come up with a list of great home options! As a local Mijas real estate agency, we love living and working in Mijas and would be happy to help you find your perfect place in the sun here, too.