Expat life: Making new friends

Moving to a new country is fraught with challenges – finding a new job, getting to grips with the local way of life, new culture, new food etc. But there is another challenge and one that is often overlooked amidst all the other pressures of the move: making new friends. This can be especially difficult for adults who don´t have the advantage of going to school every day and being forced to make friends that way, as is the case with children. Thankfully, there are loads of ways of smoothing this part of the transition and ensuring that finding your place in the sun needn´t mean abandoning your social life.

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Foreign buyers, except for Britons, are buying more than in the pre-recession period

One of the conclusions drawn from the presentation on international marketing challenges given by Alfredo Millá, Sonneil’s CEO (www.sonneil.com) at the last Barcelona Meeting Point in Barcelona, is that buyers coming from the major countries purchasing second homes in Spain are buying more than in the pre-recession period. Especially Northern countries, which have increased their volume of purchases by 450%, compared to the year 2006, followed by Belgians, 240% and French, 54%. All that according to the data provided by the Land and Mercantile Registrars Association of Spain’s Statistics Reports.

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Real Estate Glossary: Kitchen layouts

Open-plan, separate, kitchenette, single-wall… When reading some building specifications and brochures we may find some terms referring to different kinds of kitchen which do not sound familiar to us. Moreover, kitchen layouts may differ, especially in newly-built developments, depending on the predominant trends and the target customer. For instance, a separate kitchen is often our first choice for our usual main residence, whereas we prefer an open-plan kitchen in our 2nd home, which is understandable since when we are on holiday we do not feel like cooking.  Instead, we opt for a larger living are or a good-sized terrace to enjoy the unrivalled Mediterranean sunlight 🙂

There are basically two main layouts: separate and open-plan. Let us examine this in greater detail… Seguir leyendo

How to apply for NIE number in Spain?

If you are planning to purchase a property in Spain you will need to obtain a NIE number to do all the paperwork or to make any transaction in Spain, e.g. opening a bank account, applying for funding, paying your taxes, etc. The so-called NIE is an acronym for Número de Identidad de Extranjero, i.e. Foreigner’s identification number, it will be your identification and tax number in Spain and is issued by the Foreign Service stations. Before going any further, we would like to point out the difference between the NIE, TIE and the authorization of residence:

Golden Visa: getting a residency permit in return for an investment

Golden Visa Law (Law 14/2013) allows non-EU investors to apply for Spanish residency. Its people and culture, the joy of life, its unrivalled climate, prices bottoming out… all of them are some of the reasons why Spanish real estate has become an attractive choice for investment, whether for sand-sea lovers or a professional investors. If you are a non-EU citizen and you are considering investing in Spanish real estate, the following information is doubtlessly of your interest. This new law allows you to reside in Spain with no requirement for minimum stays. The only condition is that you had visited Spain at least once in the year to renew the Visa. Read on to learn more about the requirements and conditions of the so-called “Spanish Golden Visa”.

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How much does it cost buying property in Spain?

Buying property in Spain is always a good investment, especially now. The favourable currency exchange rate and the fact that prices have hit rock-bottom make this moment the perfect opportunity to make that idea prowling around your mind come true. Now it is a great time to benefit from the exchange rate. If you buy in UK Pounds, you will get best value for money.

However, it is important to bear in mind that buying a home where the sun always shines involves certain expenses which are listed below: Seguir leyendo