Possible signs of recovery in Marbella and the Costa del Sol?

Diana Morales DM Properties
6 minutes to read

I am following the news about the signs of the real estate market’s recovery in other countries and I confirm that in general they come from industry professionals.

Some of our clients - when we mention the news- are sceptical and believe the news are propaganda. Maybe they are in some cases. But we wanted to comment what we, at DM Properties have been observing over the past months since February:

The 4 months prior to March were months of a lot of activity in terms of the number of enquiries and visits to a property. Results: none or few according to our experience and that of some of the colleagues which we have consulted and who we think are more trustworthy and which are those with a longer trajectory in the real estate business.

Since March and during the following months, sales start to materialize in Marbella and adjacent municipalities, especially sales of apartments in a price range of 200,000 to 900,000 Euros and villas up to 2 million. The luxury market is still very quiet with few sales although in the last 2 months there is an increasing number of viewings in this segment.

¿What it is selling and how to sell your property in Marbella faster?

Property owners often ask us what is selling and what must be done to sell their property faster as in many cases, they are in a hurry, be it for economical reasons or simply because they have other plans and projects and need to dispose of their property.

Below, we can summarize the elements which make a property sell faster than others:

  • Location. If the property is located in an established and renowned area, its proximity to the beach, has easy access to supermarkets, restaurants, shops or has good views. The latter, of course, has always been a very important element for the majority of buyers, in both high and in low times.
  • Competitive Price. In other words, that it is the property at the lowest price within the estate or developments where it is located. Today’s buyer, who has the support of the Internet, is an “educated” client that contrasts information and prices and can make his/her own market study and compare prices easily. With the assistance of his/her real estate agent who will offer him/her not only the agencies’ own listings but also those of collaborating agencies, therefore being able to offer a wider number of properties, he/she will be able to find the most suitable property at the lowest price. Note: DM Properties is founding member of the LPA, a network of real estate companies that share a data base and abide by the same working ethics.
  • Unique characteristics of the property such as surface, quality and preservation. No doubt, when it comes to choosing, the buyer will choose the property which is best maintained and which won’t require an additional investment for refurbishing and updating. In the case that this investment is a must, he/she will expect a compensation or discount in the price.
  • Uniqueness of the property in its position or quality and where it is no longer possible to reproduce it. In general, this is related to its location: front line beach, front line golf or the size of its plot within its area.
  • Buyer's trust. When a buyer sees that he/she has missed the opportunity of buying a property because he/she didn’t make up his/her mind up on time, hoping that the price would decrease and when he/she finally took a decision the property had been sold. This happens mostly with properties that are located in sought-after areas and with those that are always interesting to a large number of buyers. In other words the buyer has the confidence that he/she is buying well and must not miss the opportunity.

Based on the previous points, our advice to those wishing to sell their property now is the following:

Compare your property with other similar ones in your areas or in areas/developments which can be comparable. Re-evaluate the price if haven’t done so already. Forget about prices of 2 years ago or even of 7 months ago. If you have a valuation dating back to that period, discard it and consult your real estate agent and ask him/her to update the price and he/she should give you his/her honest opinion on a realistic price for this current market. Do not come up with a price on your own, listen to the opinion of industry professionals.

Maintain your property in a good condition. Make the necessary works to keep the property up to good standards of presentation and condition. Do not hide the defects and be prepared to offer a discount for the buyer to cover the costs of reparation if you are not prepared to do it. Know how much those works can cost and do not take the attitude that it is up to the buyer to make those improvements as you have been able to live without them. Do not underestimate the intelligence and knowledge of the buyer.

Know exactly what the tax costs will be at the time of the sale and avoid any surprises once negotiations have started with a potential purchaser.

Respond quickly to offers that are made to you. Don’t think that your property is unique and that the buyer can wait. Bear in mind that the buyer has other offers and that he/she is dealing with other property owners that may be more flexible or need to sell more urgently.

If you are going to use a real estate company, recur to those with a long trajectory in the area and of proven experience, which collaborate with other agencies or form part of real estate Networks and associations that allow them to have better access to possible buyers and better ability to market your property.

Give your agent incentives. And we don’t mean raising the commission but working as a team, listen to them and respect their opinion. Things such as simply facilitating access to your property without them having to run around picking up keys or having to call and keep calling the person in charge of granting access to the property will keep the agent motivated to sell your property. If possible, have someone you trust, open windows, switch lights on and if necessary keep the property clean when there is a viewing. This will make a good impression to someone visiting the property for the first time!

Read more in our article Property in Spain: Tips for Sellers and please, feel free to contact us if you want more specific information.

Diana Morales, 12 Aug 2009 - Intelligence

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