• Before you buy in Spain, speak to us

    Relocation services for individuals, families and companies


  • Over thirty years' expertise

    Intimate knowledge of locations


  • Taking the stress out of moving to Spain

    Extensive experience in all areas that matter


  • Relocating or moving to Spain?

    Closer than you think, with all the support you need


  • Choose the coast

    We can help you find the ideal location


  • Choose inland

    We can help you find the ideal location


Buying a Property in Spain? Daunted by the logistics?


Moving house in your own country can be time consuming and difficult; buying or renting a property overseas is a formidable task.

Integrated Relocation Spain (IRS) removes the stress and frustration. We guide you through the whole process, offering advice customised to suit you the individual. You choose the lifestyle, we address the search, the negotiations, the detail and the challenges that present themselves along the way.

If you’re thinking of buying a property in Andalucia, Murcia, the Costa Blanca or Madrid, we have the experience and the inside knowledge. We’ll find your perfect home, then help with all the aspects of buying and moving. We represent you, the client, and only you. We are completely independent, and take no commission from any other party so there is no conflict of interest. We are there to give you best advice throughout the entire process, and to recommend any other professionals that you might need.

I've worked in the property industry in both the UK and Spain for over 30 years and have lived in Spain for more than 20 years. Helping people find new homes and new lives in Spain is a job I love. My role is to understand you and your family’s requirements and to help you make an informed decision based on your own specific situation. I can help you choose the right location and find the right property often saving you significant sums of money in the process. We have an in depth understanding of Spanish legal and bureaucratic issues and will guide you through the system and its vagaries, undertaking due diligence, protecting you from mistakes, and ensuring that no administrative detail is overlooked. 

We work exclusively for you – your interests are our only objective. Whether you’re moving to Spain to work; setting up a business in Spain; retiring to Spain; or investing in Spanish property, we will make sure that all your decisions are informed, and that you receive professional and personal advice that ensures a successful and happy outcome. We look after our clients as though they were our family or friends, measuring our success by the satisfaction of the people we work for.  Read some of the buying stories from past clients here.

We would love to work with you and help you achieve your Spanish dream, so why not contact us today?

Relocating to Spain made easy

Spain is a country that conjures up such diverse images – long days full of sunshine and Mediterranean light, proud cities brimming with fashion, art, culture, architecture and beautiful people, the intensity of the bullfight and the passion of the football match; the ritualistic cooking of a paella; miles of beaches, rugged mountain ranges, flamenco dancing, Picasso, tapas, Gaudi… It’s a country full of passion, colour and warmth.

And so it is with its diversity of regions. The sparkling Mediterranean beaches, the wildness of the Atlantic coast, the desert landscapes of Almeria, the peaks of the Pyrenees, the rugged wildness of inland Andalucia, and the cities with their combination of history and cutting edge architecture.

Choosing where to live or buy in such a huge country isn’t easy. Make sure you buy wisely, investing in property that has all the features necessary to ensure it holds its value and is in constant demand. Generally this means avoiding the areas of mass development, and not being taken in by the aggressive marketing tactics of the large developers.

If you’re considering buying in a non-expat area, be sure that you are happy to have less interaction with English neighbours. Your language skills will need to be better honed, not just for social purposes, but to deal with banks, public offices, medical centres, and shops that are less likely to have English speaking staff than in the typical expat areas.

Property in rural Spain, and some more Spanish coastal areas can be an excellent investment for part time residents as good rental returns can be achieved from both Spanish and English holiday tenants.

Much of Spain has a relatively low profile. You may decide that the highly populated expat areas, for example, Costa Del Sol, and Costa Blanca, are the ones you are interested in, but before you jump to a quick decision, click on the different areas of the map and investigate what the different regions of Spain have to offer.

Rhona Hutchinson is an expert on all aspects of buying property in Spain and is frequently quoted in the national press. Here is a selection of recent press coverage.

The Sunday Times

The gain in Spain - A pioneering British buyer paid £500 for a Spanish shack in 1968. Now she’s selling it as a sleek three-bed home minutes from Marbella

“In Estepona, which was a small fishing village in the 1970s, there were just three or four cars, owned by the police and the doctor,” recalls Rhona Hutchinson, director of Integrated Relocation Spain, who in 1977 began working for a company that ran some of the first inspection trips to the Costa del Sol. “And the local cinema in Puerto Banus was a hut where the audience huddled around on directors’ chairs with drinks from the nearby bar. Now the cinema is luxury apartments.

“We were selling one-bedroom apartments near Puerto Banus for as little as £8,000, and you could buy a two-bedroom villa for under £20,000,” she says. Nowadays, a good-quality two-bedroom flat would cost £220,000, although that’s still down on the £330,000 reached at the peak in 2007. 

Read full article

The Financial Times

On the fast track

Not all locations have been so successful. The Spanish city of Valencia, which won the right to stage a race five years ago, is struggling to lift a local housing market in near-freefall. Rhona Hutchinson of Integrated Relocation Spain, a buying service operating for foreign clients moving to the country, says: “Some investors have picked up prime-site apartments which produce good rental income over the days of the event but occupancy is less predictable during the rest of the year. F1 certainly lends the city recognition and glamour but in this recession, the benefits are masked.” 

Read full article

Daily Mail:

Valencia's winning formula: The Grand Prix city has all the buzz of Barcelona, but far lower prices

For many holiday home buyers, Spain means sun, sea and sand — but it can also mean 'city'. And many Britons dream of a place in the fashionable hubs of Barcelona or Madrid. But for those who cannot afford the price tags of these glamorous options, Valencia, on Spain's Mediterranean coastline midway between Barcelona and Malaga, can be an affordable alternative. 

Read Full Article

The Guardian:

Spanish Property: Playing it cool in the coastal hotspots

“Refine the search to established developments that are mature and run well. Buying from individuals may be a better option than from developers. Prices may be 30% to 40% lower than last year, and further negotiation is possible,” says Rhona Hutchinson of Integrated Relocation Spain. 

Read Full Article

Telegraph:

Property in Spain, but not as we know it (Menorca)

“The island’s homes remain expensive – as on all the Balearic Islands – but better value than before. “Prices are 30 to 40 per cent down on Menorca as they are throughout Spain,” says Rhona Hutchinson of Integrated Relocation Spain, a buying agency. “They are also much lower than on nearby Majorca.

“Majorca is a little brassier than Menorca, where Britons are lower-key and concentrate on their homes and boats,” says Hutchinson. “There are also stricter planning laws that prevent the oversupply of high-rise flats that scar many mainland costas and parts of Majorca.” 

Read Full Article

Telegraph:

Buying abroad, cutting the risk of getting burned

“A sumptuous villa is tempting but consider the costs and practicality of upkeep when you are back in Britain for more than 90 per cent of the year. A property with a garden and pool will add considerably to ongoing costs and require looking after while you are away. Be aware of the security aspect while the property is lying empty,” advises Rhona Hutchinson of Integrated Relocation Spain, a buying agency.

 Read Full Article

Telegraph:

Ask the Experts – buying in Andalucia

The Market

I know people use search agents to help them find the perfect house and I wondered if there were any firms, or individuals, offering the same service for foreign property. We want to buy somewhere in Andalucia but can’t afford the time to fly back and forth to find what we’re after. We want a traditional house with character, if possible a restoration project.

Lorna Vestey writes:

Buying abroad obviously has potential pitfalls and there are plenty of reasons to make retaining a good search agent a sensible plan. The language and local law will contain unknowns and, when judging by appearance only, it is difficult to distinguish the good and honest advisers (or sellers) from the incompetent and devious. Added to that is a lack of local knowledge and the practical difficulties of searching for a property in a country where you are not based.

For reliability, choose a member of EuRA, the international professional association of relocation agents. While most members in Spain specialise in the corporate sector, Integrated Relocation Spain also offers property search to private individuals (0844 598 3222; integratedrelocationspain.com) and I suggest you contact them.

Our fees explained 


How much? 

We ask our clients to pay a small registration fee (375 Euros plus VAT) at the beginning of our search. This goes some of the way to covering our expenses during the time it takes for us to establish your requirements and conduct the search on your behalf. But it doesn’t cover our time. Only when you have successfully exchanged contracts on the property we find for you do we send you an invoice for the remaining fee, which varies from 1.5% to 2.5% of the final purchase price, depending on the level of service you require (see below). There is a minimum fee for buying clients (not rentals) of 4500 Euros plus IVA.

What if we don’t buy a property?

If the purchase is unsuccessful for any reason, or if you simply decide not to go ahead, you will only be required to pay up to a maximum 650 Euros (plus VAT) depending on the time given and the service provided so far. However, we have made successful purchases on behalf of virtually all our clients – it’s very rare that for some reason there is an unsuccessful outcome.

How we save you money?

There are many companies that set themselves up to sound like property finders, but in fact they are working on behalf of the seller, taking commission from the selling agent or the developer. We work exclusively for the buyer, your interests are our interests, and we aim to secure you the right property at the best possible price. Any discounts available will be passed on to you, so it’s not unusual for the cost of our service to be offset against savings we make you elsewhere.

We can save you money in many other ways too. Most obviously, we will keep the number of trips you need to make to a minimum, saving you money on sometimes fruitless and unnecessary visits to look at property that turns out to be unsuitable.

There are often discounts available on property that aren’t made available to the end purchaser. We will always look for discounts, especially on new developments, and pass them on in full to our clients. Whether there is a discount available or not, we negotiate tenaciously on behalf of our clients, reducing the asking price by anything up to 20% -30%. Our knowledge of the local market, and our contacts within it, make this possible.

In addition to the savings we can negotiate on the property itself, we also aim to save you money by referring you to known specialists, professionals, and other third parties that will offer you better rates than if you approached them direct. We will also ensure you avoid the less reputable companies that may exploit your lack of experience, and we will point you in the direction of the best value ways of dealing with bureaucracy.

Finally, much of the work we do for you in securing the property is work that you would need to pay an expert for in the normal course of events (see below).

What’s included in our fee:


Services Provided
Full

2.5%
Retirement
or Holiday
2%
Basic

1.5%
Personal profiling
YesYes
Yes
Matching of locations
Yes
Yes
Yes
Presentation of identified locations
Yes
Yes
Yes
Orientation visit (not including flights & hotels)
Yes
Yes
Yes
Property search, inspection, presentation
Yes
Yes
Yes
Negotiation of terms, price and contract
Yes
Yes
Yes
Background checks, due diligence, in-house conveyancing
Yes
Yes
Yes
Accompaniment and translation at completion
Yes
Yes
Yes
Post-purchase title deed administration 
Yes
Yes
No
Utilities name/title transfer
Yes
Yes
Yes
Procurement of obligatory NIE or tax ID numbers
Yes
Yes
Yes
Advice on currency transfers/methods
Yes
Yes
No
Introduction to pre-qualified lawyers/tax advisors
Yes
Yes
No
Help opening Spanish bank account
Yes
NoYes
Identification and presentation of suitable schools
Yes
No
No
School enrolment administration
Yes
No
No
Registration with local town hall  
Yes
No
No
Opening of a PO Box
Yes
No
No
Advice on car importation and/or purchase
Yes
No
No
Advice regarding state vs private healthcare
Yes
Yes
No
Private healthcare quotes
Yes
Yes
No
Introductions to recommended local builders and architects
Yes
Yes
No
Budget planning and local living analysis
Yes
No
No
Provision of temporary Spanish address for official purposes
Yes
No
No
Bilingual interpreters for any related purpose
Yes
Yes
Yes
Retirement advice
Yes
Yes
No
Advice on bringing pets into the country
Yes
No
No

Guarantee:
While it’s not possible to guarantee that using Integrated Relocation Spain will save you money, there’s a strong likelihood that by using our services you will save well in excess of our fee. What we can guarantee is that you will be relieved of the difficulties, stress, uncertainty and practical problems associated with moving overseas.

Services

Buying as an individual or a family

There are many good reasons to buy in Spain, either to live there permanently, or to have a second home. After the marked fall in prices of the past few years, in some places they are holding or beginning to rise; the legal issues surrounding property purchase are becoming much tighter, and there is no need to buy low-quality new developments in over-developed areas. The price corrections brought about by the recession were long overdue, and the sector most affected is that of high-density and overcrowded new developments. Off plan investors have confused the real market, but the long-term investment prospects are good, especially if you buy wisely.

How to buy wisely in Spain

Not all Spanish property is the same! If you select your area and your property carefully, making sure it has all the features necessary to ensure it holds its value, you can buy with confidence.

  • Avoid areas of mass development
  • Don't be taken in by the aggressive marketing tactics of the large developers.
  • There are areas of coastal Spain that have a much lower proportion of expat residents – the Atlantic coast in the north and the South West, and the coast north of Valencia are the predominant areas.
  • If you're considering buying in a non-expat area, be sure that you are happy to have less interaction with English neighbours. Your language skills will need to be better honed, not just for social purposes, but to deal with banks, public offices, medical centres, and shops that are less likely to have English speaking staff than in the typical expat areas.
  • Property in rural Spain, and some more Spanish coastal areas can be an excellent investment for part time residents as good rental returns can be achieved from both Spanish and English holiday tenants.
  • Don't assume that rural Spain is going to be quiet and peaceful – Spanish residents are less bothered by noise than the English, so pay attention to how close neighbours are, and listen out for local noise levels – particularly barking dogs and mopeds!

Recent clients

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Renting as an individual or a family

 

Some people prefer to initially rent a property in Spain. Renting can be a good option for lots of reasons – as a first stop ‘try before you buy’ option, or if you can’t (or don’t want to) sell your property in the UK.

If you are unfamiliar with the country, the kind of property you choose for your first year may be different to where and what you live in when you have become more acclimatised. Renting in a development with a high proportion of other fellow national residents around you may be good for a year or two; but when your language skills have improved, and you have a wider group of friends, you may want to seek out a more independent or Spanish lifestyle.

Good quality rental property is plentiful, so there’s lots of choice. And prices are often negotiable and we will help to ensure you have the right contract and do not get lumbered with any hidden fees. Rental property is mostly furnished, but it’s possible to find unfurnished property too (rental prices tend to be less negotiable than sales prices). 

The Spanish rental system


  • The landlord will usually take the equivalent of one/two month's deposit if the property is unfurnished and at least two/three months deposit if furnished
  • If the property is managed by an agent it will be the agent who will take care of organising maintenance and checking the property
  • If there is no agent, the landlord will make an appointment to view the property
  • If an estate agent is involved, this agent will charge a fee at the beginning of the contract. This arrangement can vary, so check at the outset to avoid unwelcome surprises

Integrated Relocation Spain (IRS) handles all elements of finding and securing rental property on behalf of clients. Much of the process, in terms of finding the property and helping our clients acquire their new life, is the same as for a purchase. But the administrative detail on a rental property has its own administrative requirements. IRS are there to assist with:

Rental contracts, administration and translation


  • Due diligence on your chosen property
  • Rental contracts, administration and translation
  • Introduction to pre-qualified and vetted local solicitors, surveyors, insurance brokers tax advisors and specialists
  • Management of financial arrangements and advice on transfer methods
  • Transfer of utilities, and applying for telephone and internet contracts
  • Introduction to suitable and reputable removal companies
  • Ensuring the properties are clean, ready for the clients’ arrival, and coordinating handover of keys

Company Relocation


Our full range of buying services includes:

  • Finding the right area and locating the best property for your employees
  • Making the initial investigations
  • Negotiating the best deal
  • Undertaking due diligence on the property
  • Handling the administration
  • Advising on education, healthcare systems, and all other aspects of your employees' new life

Retiring to Spain

Dreaming of a retiring in Spain? Daunted by the logistics?

There are numerous good reasons to dream about a comfortable retirement in Spain – the climate, ease of travel to and from Europe and beyond, and modern and efficient hospitals and healthcare facilities to name just a few. But the complications that occur to you in the cold light of day can prevent you from living the dream.

Can I afford it? Where’s the best place to live? And how do I go about finding the perfect property? How will it affect my pension? What about healthcare? I don’t know where to start!

Of course it’s not a decision to be taken lightly, or a process that should be undertaken without a great deal of planning. Integrated Relocation Spain (IRS) helps UK residents retire to Spain, offering advice customised to suit the individual. You choose the lifestyle, we address the detail, and are there to hold your hand throughout. Our advice will pay financial and emotional dividends, resulting in considerable financial savings, a more secure retirement base, and the avoidance of bureaucratic difficulties.

Whether you are working, an early retiree, empty nester or a pensioner, we will look after you. There are so many factors that will affect the decisions that you need to make; we deal with each case in a unique way, taking into consideration:

  • Finances
  • Need for medical care
  • Location of friends and family
  • Lifestyle choices
  • Desire for independence, or need for on-hand help

Our service doesn’t start and end with finding and securing the right property. We help you with the whole process, starting with a full discussion and feasibility study of your retirement plans, and not stopping till you have transferred all your benefits and healthcare, registered with your new GP, dealt with all your paperwork and are ready to start you new life.

Useful Information

Relocating to Spain made easy

The Spanish Healthcare System Explained

Moving to Spain is a dream many people have, but often the sheer scale of the move can seem overwhelming. And one of the greatest hurdles, especially for the over 55s, is the healthcare issue. Even those in perfect health have a fear that leaving the UK and a health system they understand may be a rash move.

But the health system in Spain is reassuringly good and modern – social security payments are high, so the level of service is excellent, and the system has few of the under-financing problems that the UK system experiences. Private healthcare too is excellent, and retirees who have private health insurance can often transfer it to a Spanish policy (generally for similar or even lower premiums), that will cover them in the same way as it does in the UK. For an additional premium, some private health insurance schemes also cover repatriation for treatment in your country of origin.

Hospitals and medical centres:

Most cities have at least one hospital, others have several, some private, some public, most have casualty or A&E departments called ‘Urgencias’. Smaller towns have medical centres (Centro de Salud) – many of which are brand new and extremely well equipped and run. Some have such a range of specialists and equipment that visits to hospitals are a rare necessity. But in quieter rural areas, your local health centre may only be open for a few hours a day.

As in the UK, you will be registered with a local GP (Medico de Cabecera), who will normally work out of your local Centro de Salud. Assess the Centre in the area to which you are thinking of moving – does it have the requisite medical facilities that you need now? Or that you think you may need in the future? What are the opening hours? Where is the nearest hospital? The healthcare system in Spain is totally decentralised, so you need to check that everything you need is provided free under the regional healthcare system.

Unless you have a good grasp of the language, you should also check whether there are English speaking doctors, or whether there’s a voluntary interpreter scheme. The further away from the cities and the coast you go, the less chance there is of finding English speaking healthcare professionals. In many expat areas, hospitals and medical centres have voluntary interpreters who are expats themselves.

As in the UK you can wait a long time in A&E (Urgencias) to be seen. Those arriving by emergency service will be seen faster. A fantastic private emergency scheme available on the Costa del Sol is called the ‘Helicopteros Sanitarios’. It provides emergency call out and provision for immediate treatment or emergency transport to the nearest hospital.

Spanish culture:

Those unfamiliar with Spanish hospitals should be alerted to the fact that it is customary for someone from the immediate family to stay with the patient while he or she is in hospital – all day and all night! It isn’t essential, but if as a relative you pop in with some grapes and pop out again, it will be considered unusual!

Chemists:

Chemists are called ‘Farmacias’ and are identified by the large green cross signage. Every village, however small, has one, and they are open during normal shop working hours, about 09.30-14.00 and 17.00-20.30 Monday to Friday; half day Saturday and closed on Sunday. Each town will have a 24 hour chemist, but this may be on a rota and the location will change, so check the details on any chemist door.

Forms and Bureaucracy:

Your EHIC will only cover you in Spain for medical treatment on a temporary basis. If you are intending to live in Spain, and you are receiving a UK State Pension or Long Term Incapacity Benefit, before you move to Spain you should ask for your S1 form from the Department of Work and Pensions in Newcastle. You should also take with you all proper medical forms and instructions if specialist treatment is required on an ongoing basis. If you make the right provisions before you go, the process of registering for healthcare in Spain doesn’t have to be onerous. You will need originals and at least one copy of :

  • Your passport
  • A couple of passport size full colour photos
  • Your residents permit / NIE number (ID number)
  • Proof of Spanish address (normally your Certificado de Empadronamiento)
  • Your S1

Once you have your Spanish Social Security Number, you can then register with your local medical centre, where you will be allocated a local G.P. You will also be entitled to receipt of State Healthcare and free or discounted prescriptions depending on age. You will be issued with a plastic card at a later date (Tarjeta Sanitaria Individualizada Nacional). Full access to the state system starts from the day you register your S1 with the INSS. Once you are registered with the Spanish Healthcare system, should you be planning to travel anywhere in Europe, you should apply for a Tarjeta Sanitaria Europea (European Health Insurance card) which will cover you within Europe. You should remember that repatriation costs are not covered under the Spanish National Health system.

So don’t let the healthcare system put you off retiring to Spain and enjoying all the benefits. There is a degree of bureaucracy involved, but if you allow yourself plenty of time and follow the guidelines, it does all fall into place. And once you’re in the system, you’ll find it’s a good system to be in!

Relocating to Spain made easy

What to consider if you’re retiring to Spain

Retiring to Spain is a dream many people have, but there are so many issues to be considered and overcome - where to live, how to keep in touch with family and friends, how to choose the right property and go through the buying procedure, to name just a few. 

Keeping in touch with family:

Moving with a family to a different country is one of the biggest decisions, so finding a property which is suitable for visiting friends and family is crucial. Keep in mind such factors as distance from the airport and fun things for your children and grandchildren to do. Swimming, cycling, boating on a lake perhaps.  Picnics, the beach, skiing, restaurants, bars and cafés. Or maybe visiting museums, sightseeing or the cinema (showing films in yours language). 

Bureaucracy:

Make sure you make all the necessary National Insurance arrangements before leaving the UK as failure to do this will make it much harder to register for medical care once you are living in Spain. 

The right area:

However much you fall in love with a property, make sure you look beyond that and think about whether you will be happy living in the area, village or town, possibly for the rest of your days. You will want to establish friendships, join in the local festivities, maybe attend a church or join local clubs: golf, tennis, bridge, whist, bowls, etc.  In areas where there is a high concentration of expats, there are clubs which organise all sorts of outings, both day trips or longer. Language becomes more and more important as one gets older and it is important to be able to communicate if one is unwell or distressed. 

Temperature:

Temperature and humidity are important, and both are dictated by location. Some areas of Spain are very hot and humid, others much cooler and drier. Factors that affect climate are how far south or north you are, whether you’re on the coast or inland, and at what altitude. 

Wherever you are in Spain, be aware that the peak summer months get extremely hot, and it also gets cold in winter! To be comfortable, you will probably need both air-conditioning and heating. If a property does not come equipped with these, make sure that you will be able to have them installed at least in the main living area and bedroom. You will not need to run one or other all year round but you could be thankful to have them for a few months in the middle of summer and winter. A fireplace alone in the winter is not sufficient and will be hard work as you get older. 

Getting about:

Spanish villages can be very pretty and many are tucked away in the hills with attractive narrow streets and squares. They can be very seductive! But take into consideration how easy it will be to park, and how easy it is to get about the village on foot, hills and steps being a regular feature of Spanish village life.

Medical facilities:

Accessibility to medical services and doctors is an important factor to take into consideration. With advancing years you will be happier if you have doctors and nursing facilities close by. Also remember that, on the whole, the further inland you go, the less likely it is that they will speak your language.

Retirement communities:

Many people retiring to Spain choose to live in a gated community. These are mostly to be found in coastal areas and suburbs of large cities. Some are dedicated to retirement, but plenty provide everything you need but are not exclusively for the over 55s. There are many retirement residences across Spain, but the majority are run along the lines of nursing homes and probably won’t be suitable if you are fully independent and mobile.

  • Q: Some property finders offer their services free. Why is that?
  • A: There are many companies that set themselves up to sound like property finders, but in fact they are working on behalf of the seller, taking commission from the selling agent or the developer. We work exclusively for the buyer, your interests are our interests, and we aim to secure you the right property at the best possible price. Any discounts available will be passed on to you, so it’s not unusual for the cost of our service to be offset against savings you make elsewhere. Equally importantly, our network of contacts across the region is vast; our search will not be limited to a particular developer or agent. If you were to use a property finder who is affiliated to an agent, you will be missing out on a huge number of potential properties.

  • Q: We would like to buy a property in Spain, but our knowledge of the language is very limited. Is this a problem?
  • A: Not in terms of the actual buying process. Our service is completely bilingual, so we’re on hand every step of the way to provide translation and/or interpretation. We frequently work for clients who have little or no Spanish. Living in Spain isn’t impossible if you don’t speak Spanish. And the quickest way to pick it up is to live in the country, so you’ll find your language skills make rapid headway. Choosing the right location if you don’t speak Spanish is crucial. In some areas of rural Spain, very little English is spoken, and this can make your first months in the country difficult and isolating. In other parts of (mostly coastal) Spain, English is widely spoken, and it’s possible to get by with very limited Spanish without too much difficulty. Having said that, you will only really come to enjoy Spain at its best when you are able to communicate in the country’s own language. Don’t worry – you’ll pick it up very quickly once you’re here!
  • Q: What if you’re unsuccessful in finding me a property? Do I still have to pay your fee?
  • A: We ask our clients to pay a nominal registration fee (375 Euros plus IVA) at the beginning of our search. This goes some of the way to covering our expenses during the time it takes for us to establish your requirements and conduct the search on your behalf. But it doesn’t cover our time. Only when you have successfully exchanged contracts on the property we find for you do we send you an invoice for the remaining fee. If the purchase is unsuccessful for any reason there may be a fee of 500 Euros plus IVA (read more about this). However, we have made successful purchases on behalf of virtually all our clients – it’s very rare that for some reason there is an unsuccessful outcome.

  • Q: You say that using your services can save money – how is that the case?
  • A: We can save you money in many ways. Most obviously, we will keep the number of trips you need to make to a minimum, saving you money on sometimes fruitless and unnecessary visits to look at property that turns out to be unsuitable.

        There are often discounts available on property that aren’t made available to the end purchaser. We will always look for discounts, especially on new developments, and pass them on in full to our         clients. Whether there is a discount available or not, we negotiate tenaciously on behalf of our clients, reducing the asking price by anything up to 20% -30%. Our knowledge of the local market, and our contacts within it, make this possible.

        In addition to the savings we can negotiate on the property itself, we also aim to save you money by referring you to known specialists, professionals, and other third parties that will offer you better rates than if you approached them direct. And we’ll ensure you avoid the less reputable companies that may exploit your lack of experience.

        We also point you in the direction of the best value ways of dealing with bureaucracy – currency transfer, setting up bank accounts, organising insurances etc.

        Finally, much of the work we do for you in securing the property is work that you would need to pay an expert for in the normal course of events – due diligence, etc etc.


  • Q: I’ve heard a lot about ‘land grab’ and other unscrupulous activities related to buying Spanish property.  How can I avoid buying a property that turns out to have underlying problems?
  • A: Years ago properties were very often sold by private contract and proper title deeds may never have been drawn up or worse, recorded in the property registry. We will always meticulously check to make sure the title is in order on your behalf, and if not, to see if it can be rectified. We will also check to make sure the property isn’t the subject of some form of listing, or earmarked for a specific use.  We will also check at the Town Hall on the planning situation (at regional level) of neighbouring land.

Case Studies

Relocating to Spain made easy

CASE STUDY: A rental property for a family

Integrated Relocation Spain (IRS) found Chris and Claire Umney and their three children a wonderful rental property. The Umneys were determined to move, despite the economic conditions, and in fact Claire said, "If I have to go through a recession, I would rather do it in Spain than the UK."

The Umneys were initially intending to buy their property in Spain, but didn’t want to take a big hit on the sales price on their property in the UK, so they have let out their home in Surrey, and asked us to find them a property to rent, taking into consideration major factors including budget, and education for the three children. We found them a lovely three bedroom town house in La Herradura on the Costa Tropical, between Malaga and Almeria. The house is in a development on a hillside overlooking the horseshoe shaped bay.

The Costa Tropical has been developed in recent years, but the density is a great deal lower than the Costa del Sol, and prices are much lower. The house we found for the Umneys is E650 per month which includes *Community fee – a similar property on the Costa del Sol would be in the region of E1,000 per month.

The Umneys have settled in really well. They have two daughters, one 14, one 4. The elder is at the International School, while the younger is at the local school. Their two year old son is at the local nursery. All are becoming proficient at the language, making friends easily, and enjoying the lifestyle.

The Umneys are enjoying being in a development with swimming pool, lovely garden, balcony, short drive to the local school, and a relatively high proportion of other UK residents on the development. In a year’s time they may feel they no longer need the security of such an expat development and look to broaden their horizons. If so, we will be on hand to find them their new home.

*Community fee (standing charge paid by all owners for maintenance of common areas, streets, gardens, swimming pool, lighting, security, building insurance, etc.).

Relocating to Spain made easy

CASE STUDY – A move from South Africa to Andalucia

Recently Nathan and Alham Williams from Johannesburg made the decision to move away from South Africa, choosing Southern Spain for its similar climate and freedom to enjoy outdoor living without sophisticated security systems.

They asked Integrated Relocation Spain to handle their relocation. IRS selected a number of potential properties in various towns and villages in inland Andalucía. Each was selected with certain specific criteria in mind, including easy access to at least one city which would satisfy their wish for culture and entertainment and offering an international airport with good connections to other European destinations to enable Nathan to continue his work in the mining industry. Another priority was good access to medical facilities with a view to the future.

IRS found a selection of 25 properties that met the brief, and these were narrowed down to four. First there was a tumbledown and historic village house in Arcos de la Frontera with its little garden atop a cliff, with magnificent views to the old town, across the countryside and beyond to the mountains of Grazalema above Ronda. Second was a perfectly restored and spacious house in the village of Cuevas de San Marcos, just 20 minutes from Antequera and only five minutes from the Iznajar lake. This property, backing onto farmland and with wonderful views of the village and open countryside, was ready to move into.

Then there was a large two bedroom house in Villanueva del Rosario with numerous barns at the rear, plenty of land with a number of mature fruit trees on it and which could be made into a wonderful garden. This property had huge potential and the space available was tempting.  Last but by no means, a very old and lovingly refurbished house in the very picturesque village of Riogordo above Málaga, situated in one of the most emblematic streets in the village, with a little walled garden at the back with breathtaking views across the village rooftops to the rolling fields and rugged mountains beyond.

A decision would have to be made and quickly so that negotiations could start while Rhona took him to get on with the business of organizing Spanish documents, banks, powers of attorney, etc.  The property in Riogordo was considered perfect, and a decision was made to buy the village property, leaving two other propositions to fall back on as reserves, should Rhona’s due diligence on the property come up with any unforeseen snags.  In second place came Cuevas de San Marcos, offering all the instant security they could want, with plenty of inside space, but not quite enough outside.

In third place came the tumbledown house in Arcos de la Frontera, an exciting but slightly too large project to take on. The house at Villanueva del Rosario was ruled out as it held too many unknowns relating to the use of the barn and yard next door.  It was later that another hugely advantageous side to the service of Integrated Relocation Spain became obvious. In carrying out her due diligence for a subsequent client at the town hall, Rhona unearthed plans by the local council to compulsory purchase the second choice property in Arcos de la Frontera (and others nearby) to create a tranquil area for the local residents. This had gone unnoticed by the estate agent and demonstrated yet again how a properly managed relocation service can often be invaluable.

The choice having been made, Nathan dealt with tedious but essential matters of bureaucracy and all the paperwork which would be necessary for Rhona to progress matters through to their absolute conclusion once Nathan had returned to South Africa. By the middle of the following week Rhona had successfully negotiated a substantial discount on the asking price and everything was really starting to take shape.  Within the month all searches had been completed and the purchase was signed and sealed. Over the next three months of preparations for their big move, the Williams could now be secure in the knowledge they had the home of their choice, being securely looked after, waiting for them in Spain, where they could look forward to a new life confident in the knowledge that IRS had taken care of every detail.

Testimonials

Use the slider to view some of the kind words from our customers

  • Rhona was so terrific in getting me set up in Seville. I had nothing in place when I arrived in Spain but within six weeks of contacting her I had an apartment, bank account, mobile phone, had registered with the city council and my daughter was in a local primary school. Rhona was always contactable, very flexible and lovely company. I couldn't have done this without her and I am ever grateful!  

    Liz in Sevilla 
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  • My partner & I decided to retire in Andalusia in early 2014, a huge decision. We were very fortunately given Rhona's name & have to say what a gift that was.  Dealing with Rhona has been so rewarding as every aspect of the move & all the beaurocracy was handled very patiently & efficiently by Rhona - absolutely nothing was too much trouble & she made it all so much fun too.
     
    If you want to move to Spain, without hassle, you could not do better than put yourself in Rhona's hands.
     
    Annie Armandias, Estepona.

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  • My partner and I discussed over a number of years the possibility of moving to Spain, a country we had visited over the years and which we both loved. Eventually, when we both retired, we decided to make the move. However we realised that, with all the bureaucracy involved, especially in a different country and in a different language, we would need help. This was especially as we wanted to live in a Spanish town, not on the Costas. That is when we searched for a relocator and found Rhona. We liked the services she offered and testimonies she had been given. We have not doubted our decision since then. 

     

    She has been very patient with us. At first we changed our minds about exactly the place we wanted to live. Then there were the telephone calls and E mails from England. She negotiated on our behalf with our landlady, with banks and the various authorities and has been with us all through this time giving help and advice. She has been willing to answer any query we had, if she could, and, if not, she would make enquiries on our behalf. We would recommend her highly.

     

    Above all she went the extra mile for us.

    Jim and Roderick
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  • Engaging the professional services of Integrated Relocation Spain and in particular, Rhona Hutchinson, was the single most important and significant decision taken by myself, before proceeding with the process of sourcing and buying a Spanish property. Buying a property in a different country, with different laws, language and currency is extremely daunting but the help, guidance and professional service, provided by Rhona, throughout all aspects of the process, made the whole experience an extremely enjoyable and stress free one. To those people thinking of purchasing a property in Spain, I offer this singular and most important piece of advice; The money spent on the professional services that Rhona Hutchinson provides, although appearing significant, will without doubt, be the most important aspect of the total cost of acquiring your Spanish dream property.

    Alan Phillips, inland Almeria
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  • I was extremely fortunate to have been put in touch with Rhona Hutchinson when I decided to acquire a holiday home in Spain. I had not appreciated the amount of local knowledge required to both purchase and subsequently navigate my way through the resultant paperwork which is quite complex for a Spanish speaker and near impossible for others. Rhona's service, as the name of her company suggests, is total and complete, and even now some three months after completion she is still helping with banking and utility frustrations. I suspect I may not have been the easiest of clients as I was moving from Australia and am a reasonably demanding and precise person. She spent the first day and a half driving me around the various areas of interest, by which time I knew exactly where I wished to look. Four days of intense viewings followed, and on the way back to the airport I was able to give her the name of the villa I wished to acquire and the maximum price I was prepared to pay. This was some way below the asking price, but after the usual tortured negotiations, she acquired the property at my price. In conclusion, I have no hesitation in recommending I.R.S. and found Rhona honest, straightforward, unflappable, and a pleasure to deal with.

    Edwin Silver, Sotogrande
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  • Rhona's first contact was actually on my birthday and from that promising beginning came the start of a very satisfactory relationship, encompassing all the advice necessary to facilitate our move to Spain. Included was even assistance when the car battery failed; finding a Mazda garage, ordering and picking up a new battery and even fitting it! I cannot imagine where we would have begun! We would have no hesitation whatsoever in recommending Rhona to anyone considering buying or renting a property in Spain; her knowledge of the intricacies of Spanish systems is superb and invaluable. We had wonderful times together, enjoyed Spanish food we would not have known how to order, discovered a shared sense of humour and above all had great fun.

    V Powrie, Near  Murcia
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  • Rhona has been excellent in helping us acquire our holiday home in Mallorca. She fully understood the brief, found appropriate properties to view, negotiated the purchase and managed the process through to completion in a thoroughly professional and assured way.

    Jez,  Mallorca
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  • Dear Rhona, Thanks a lot for your help, it is very much appreciated. I'm really looking forward to being in Granada although perhaps a bit less to getting back to studying!! Best wishes,

    Julian, Student at Granada University
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  • Rhona Hutchinson, through Integrated Relocation Spain, provided a service that was, from start to finish, knowledgeable, helpful, well planned and a pleasure to deal with throughout. An extensive selection of properties was arranged for viewing following a discussion about the initial brief and this was then patiently adapted and refined as the conflicting demands of budget, location and property reconciled themselves.Most importantly, the property ultimately secured exceeded initial expectations. Integrated Relocation Services has also been excellent in terms of dealing with the administration and bureaucracy and identifying contractors, and post completion, to help get everything just right. We saw that you got a mention in this weekend's FT.

    Clients from Andalucia
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Calle Sierra Bermeja 48
Edif. Sierra Bermeja – 1º izq.
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San Roque (Cádiz) Spain


Tel: +34 956 695 949

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Tel: 0844 598 3222 from UK