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Last Updated: Tuesday, 19 August, 2003, 14:01 GMT 15:01 UK
Spanish property buying
BBC Radio 4's Money Box was broadcast on Saturday, 30 August, 2003 at 12:04 BST, and repeated on Monday, 1 September, 2003 at 15:02 BST

Spanish property for sale sign

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Buying a home in Spain is no longer just for the rich, and selecting a property is presented as being as easy as picking a package holiday, but with little talk about the risks of getting it wrong.

Money Box's Chris A'Court travelled to Spain to see first hand how property inspection trips work, and the pressure that is on people to sign up to buy a place in the sun.

He heard how for some people the dream can turn sour, and into financial disaster.

Unexpected costs

People say it is a minefield if you are buying property abroad - and in Spain specifically - well, I am afraid it is
Money Box listener Danny Bowers
Danny Loveridge and his family have lost their investment and seen their home demolished as a result of laws allowing developers to hold great power over existing property owners in one part of Spain.

Now the Loveridge's fear the same thing is about to happen elsewhere.

Danny told the programme: "What we want to do is make sure nobody else has to face what we have done".

Another ex-pat told the programme how people can unexpectedly find they have to pay thousands more than the asking price when property transactions go wrong.

Discussing Spanish property laws
Former diplomat Chuck Svoboda tells Chris A'Court about controversial Spanish property laws
Danny Bowers faced losing his swimming pool if he did not pay over tens of thousands of pounds to the local council after moving into his house.

He said: "People say it is a minefield if you are buying property abroad - and in Spain specifically - well I am afraid it is."

Chris A'Court found out what rules you should follow if you are thinking of buying in Spain, and how you can reduce the risk of your dream turning into a disaster.

Presenter: Chris A'Court
Producer: Penny Haslam
Researcher: Diane Richardson

Money Box



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27 Aug 03  |  Moneybox



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