Monday, March 30, 2009

Good for the Garden?

So it is grey and water is falling from the sky so here is the mood for today in Valencia.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Quality Houses for Sale in Spain Will Always Sell

And now is a great time to buy quality houses for sale in Spain because the offers available are excellent due to a combination of factors. Let's look at the facts.

Stunning 7 Bedroomed House inland Valencia

1) Sterling's fall against the Euro coupled with high interest rates last year has placed a lot of British sellers into a position where they can accept, indeed in many cases need to accept, lower offer prices. An example would be that a property that somebody bought investing 200000 Pounds meant paying out between 290-300000 Euros. To recoup that 200000 Pounds the sale price could now be around 210-220000 Euros. Therefore look for properties for sale in Spain from British sellers who can take advantage of this currency gain as they are selling for far lower than residents of the Eurozone.

215000 Euros Ruzafa, Valencia.

2) Interest rates have now fallen dramatically so if you buy a property in Spain then you can get a great deal on the mortgage, if you are a decent client. Also you can take on a current mortgage at a far lower interest rate than a new one and with fewer costs.

3) Buying at the bottom of the cycle is always the best guarantee but when will the bottom of the cycle arrive? Well in many areas it may have already done so. My personal opinion is that you allow some other buyer to wait for the absolute bottom of the cycle because if discounts are already factored in by British sellers using the currency advantage and they realise that to compete they must be keen on price then they are prices to sell very well. Other sellers may eventually drop their prices to compete but the best deals are from British sellers at the moment converting their Euros to Pounds.

4) The better the quality of the property as regards the house itself, the area, the economy etc... the less chance it has of staying on sale for a long time. If you are able to get a good property in a good area at a great price just jump on board now because when the excess number of properties in Spain gets mopped up there will only be the least attractive properties left.

Outside a delicious country house at 90000 Euros

So if you are sitting on the fence due to currency fluctuations, worries about the economy, the uncertainty of interest rates etc... then have a bit of confidence and you can get the best deal you will have seen in a long time. Below are some examples of current great deals because the prices are just exquisite, often below the price they were bought at some years ago and well below current market values. Prices range from 90000-240000 Euros and all are from British sellers and therefore you are guaranteed much lower prices than from Eurozone sellers.

Bijou Flat and Garage in Ruzafa

Huge Country House Inland Valencia with 5000m2 of Olive Trees

Stunning Third Floor Flat in Central Valencia

Country House for Just 90000 Euros

Lovely flat in Ruzafa, Valencia

Thursday, March 26, 2009

New Poll From Twitter

What You Need to Know pt 9, The Spanish Work Ethic

If you are going to be working and living in Spain then you will have to adapt to the customs of the place to enjoy yourself fully. Many things are different but here are the main ones.

1) Expect a longer day. Because of the break at midday in most jobs, between 2pm and 5pm in general, the working day is longer. And not many people do the siesta in that time anymore, they are too busy shopping in the department stores and hypermarkets and eating long lunches.

2) Expect plenty of breaks during the day. The morning coffee is sacrosanct for most office workers and others. A car repair shop I know closes for a quick coffee at around 10am and they often don't get back until between 11 and 11.30. Remember though there is also the frequent fag breaks now smoking is prohibited indoors, toilet breaks and general "just got to run down to the shops/take kids to doctors breaks.

3) Civil Servants (I will not rant here) do not actually do anything most of the day. There are millions of them in Spain and their jobs are guaranteed for life. Kill the boss, do your time and come back to your original comfy chair with all the paperwork in the outbox still waiting for you is perfectly feasible. If you have to deal with officialdom in Spain be afraid, be very afraid.

4) The Spanish will work late to finish off jobs. (Sorry I missed a not out of that sentence) This is a particularly good trait as it means that they can always justify their existence in the job by having work ongoing at any point should a boss pop in from the cafe or bar to have a look what is going on.

5) There is a laissez faire attitude to work which resonates with the pace of life in general. If you want to work at your usual rate you may have to wait around a while so get used to playing with your Blackberry in waiting rooms.

6) I think Spain has the biggest GDP in the World. However on the official lists it is just eighth in general. (The best unofficial list is here in Wiki) The reason I say i think it is the largest is that the black economy in Spain is huge. The government is perceived to take such a cut from taxes and, more especially, social security payments that most people consider that it would not be right if some avoidance didn't go on.

7) If you run your own business prepare yourself for a myriad of red tape. Don't drown in it though. Hand the job over to a Gestor. They can do the drowning for you.

8) The Spanish believe in a job for life rather than testing out opportunities and different experiences. That is why they want to become Civil Servants. Unfortunately, there are not many private sector full time, permanent contracts around as it costs an absolute fortune to sack someone in Spain. Therefore expect short term contracts renewed at the end if both parties are satisfied and there is still work to be done.

9) There are expected to be around 5 million unemployed in Spain by the end of this year, around 20% of the workforce. If you are coming to work in Spain have a good life plan and business plan and expect to work for yourself to start with.

10) Unemployment. There are few benefits if you haven't worked in Spain before. If you have then benefit payments are generous but run out after two years maximum.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

What You Need To Know pt8, Jamón (Vegetarians Turn Away Now)

Ham, or rather Jamón, is a staple of Spanish cuisine. Not boiled ham, not cooked ham but really Jamón salted and dried in the wind on the hillsides of Extremadura or Teruel... ok that is the romantic version but there are a lot of very scared pigs in Spain looking at how they can escape or lose four limbs to avoid the inevitable hanging out on the hillside. So what do you need to know?

1) Jamón is a great delicacy and should not be confused with the reconstituted stuff found in tins in the UK called spam (Spare Parts and meat) An added bonus is that Jamón does not generally fill up your inbox with offers for Viagra and Free Business Cards (Yes I am talking to you Vistaprint)

2) The best Jamón is generally thought to be Pata Negra which you can tell by the large nail on the end of the leg being coloured black.

3) Jamón has to be sliced really thin to be appreciated as if it is too thick there is no way you will be able to chew it.

4) The packaging of Jamón is an ecologists nightmare. In packaged Jamón every slice is seperated by a thin plastic sheet so they do not stick together. The only way to make it even slightly more eco friendly is to buy the whole leg and go through the slicing routine whenever you fancy a nibble.

5) Needless to say Jamón is not for vegetarians.

6) Certain bars, in fact most of them, will have Jamón hanging over the bar. This explains the grease stains on the bar of course as every now and again some of the fat drips. There should be a little triangular catcher under the apex of the leg to catch it but this always seems to be in the wrong place and your beer or coffee in the right place to catch it.

7) Just like there are wine appreciation courses available there are also Jamón slicing courses. Well worth it so as not to waste most of your Christmas present

8) If you work in Spain your employer will most likely give you a hamper at Xmas which, if you are a favoured employee, will contain a leg of ham. You then spend the next few days buying a ham rack to put it on, getting and sharpening a special carving knife and applying a rarely used technique called cutting chunks off. After about a month when the flies are too engorged too actually bother flying anymore you will decide to give up the ghost. At that point you can actually send the ham to an expert cutter, usually the local butcher, and for a good sized fee he will return it to you as a bone and huge piles of finely cut meat. So just to summarise, you have to pay three times if someone gives you Jamón as a present.

Personally I love Serrano and wouldn't swap it for the World.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Cheesy, Arty but Good

If you can get round the cheesiness and the quintessentially arty nature of this video then you may well like it as an itroduction to Valencia. This is what you can expect, along with the much more direct video below again.

Oh and if you like Tennis then the new building to hold the ATP tournament that is coming can be seen in a 3D rendering here

Come to Valencia to visit or live here.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

What You Need To Know pt7, Puentes

A bridge as you may know is usually something that gets you over a hole, let's say a river, gorge or something and to the other side. In Spain though a bridge is a cultural phenomenon, it is a Puente. A bridge has just happened. Thursday was San Jose, father's day to the uninitiated. This is a holiday in many parts of Spain (In Valencia we had the Fallas burning that night as described below) You may have noticed that the holiday fell on the Thursday meaning something had to be invented to get us to the weekend without working, thus the bridge. So what are they and why are bridges so special? Here we go.

1) If a holiday falls on the weekend or a Monday or Friday they are considered bad holidays in Spain because no bridge can be applied. A Wednesday is a great opportunity but more difficult to swing.

2) The magic days are Tuesday and Thursday. If a holiday falls then the vast majority of Spain will see that as a great opportunity to have a Monday or Friday skive.

3) What do people do on bridges? They join traffic jams and swap sitting in their offices for sitting in an overheated car heading for the coast or mountains

4) A new lexicon enters the language during the Bridges, Muertes en la carretera" "Deaths on the road". A count is kept of the number of deaths, mostly caused by overtired or ridiculously impatient drivers going the wrong way down the motorway or misjudging that overtaking maneuver they didn't really need to do. The numbers are always compared to the previous year and are regarded as a successful operation if the are reduced even just by one.

5) The Puente par excellence is the December bridge. The 6th and 8th of December are holidays in Spain and this usually means that people can take advantage of this one to start December as they mean to go on, not working. You obviously take the 7th off too as it is in the middle of two holidays, but if the first one falls on a Tuesday then you are spoilt for choice of how to swing the Puente. Do you take the Monday off and add the previous weeekend or the Friday and add the following weekend, or do you be really innovative and take the whole nine days off? Problems and consdierations eh?

What is your experience of the Puentes in Spain?

The New Website is Developing Well

Check it out at Houses for Sale in Spain So far a lot of content has been pulled from this blog and I have also added some excellent value properties on their own pages such as this apartment for sale in Valencia or this riverbed property in Valencia

There are houses in other areas of Spain and if you are a motivated seller get in touch and see if we can promote your property for you on there. The site is getting lots of good quality visitors and enquiries now.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Burning of the Fallas last night

We went to the burning of the Fallas model in Campanar last night. I thought I would put up some photos and then the video of the burning here so you could enjoy and wonder why.

The real reason for the Fallas is the burning of the accumulated rubbish at the end of the winter and Fallas marks the beginning of spring in Spain and more specifically Valencia.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

La Crema

Tonight is the Crema. What's that then? Well all of those beautiful Fallas models that have been lovingly built over the course of the past year will be burnt to the ground and tomorrow morning there will be no signs of them having been here apart from the lights which will be taken down bit by bit over the next week or so.

I am taking my daughter out to see the burning of the Campanar model as is our tradition and we will eat Chocolate and Churros for the last time this Fallas. Photos and a video to follow tomorrow.

Night night!

First Time for Something Like This

But it could really help you if you want to make your websites make you a nice little income.

I have recently been working on more and more sites and one of the things that is really helping me to understand how to do this is this brilliant free course. There is an upsell before you get to the videos which are free, and the truth is that the stuff offered is well worth it by the way, but the series of 12 videos are really useful on their own. (My suggestion is to have a look and think how you can apply this to your business and if you haven't got one, get one going)

Valencia Property on Facebook

You can find our page for Valencia Property on Facebook here

Become a fan and our updates will be sent to you on Facebook when the blog is updated. Easy peasy!

Valencia is Buzzing Tonight

It is La Nit del Foc. The night when the planned firework display starts at 2am, I think, it might be 2.30am. Anyway the hours before are a cacophony of sound with the Valencian three fingered handshake being perfected as more and more careless people use high grade explosive to blow off their fingers as they keep hold of semtex style bangers for just slightly too long.

A good night will be had by all of course and eardrums will be shattered as the late night firework display enchants all. However, the question is, is this the last night of the proms? Are people in denial about the Crisis? Is the Fallas holiday just an excuse to take minds off the serious situation that Spain is finding itself in currently or is this the way to carry on in life, as if nothing untoward is happening. One million people expected at the Nit Del Foc tonight to watch Lord knows how much money being burnt, blasted and whizzed away. Spain is different.

(The Fallas model pictured takes the mick out of Valencian Football. 90 Years of Valecia, about to go bust, and 100 years of Levante, about to go bust!)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Fallas Lights in Calle Sueca, Amazing

This video has been uploaded by the guys at HolaValencia. It shows the absolute disregard for global warming in Calle Sueca this year, the winner of the best lights during Fallas. (Joke!)

Fallas has many aspects but one of them is the prize for lighting. Then there are the prizes for the Fallas models themselves, prizes for best fireworks displays, for most active emergency room etc...

To see more photos of the Fallas models, come to have a look at my Flickr photos here

Just to remind you that in the area where this Falla and this amazing light display is we have flats for sale. Just go to Valencia Property and have a look

Sunday, March 15, 2009

What You Must Know pt6 - Spanish TV

1) It is truly awful

2) Read number one again

3) The only programme i think that has ever been invented in Spain and been successful elsewhere was 3-2-1, or as it is known here Uno Dos Tres. That was rubbish.

4) If one channel has success with a format, eg Big Brother, expect all other channels to devote ten hours every day to try and replicate it, eg El Bus.

5) If you are watching a film on Spanish TV don't forget that you were watching it during one of the 20 minute ad breaks and only realise the next morning.

6) The word Gala is to be avoided at all costs unless you love Isabel Pantoja, some minor member of the Iglesias family and bimbo models in tight dresses presenting with a vertically challenged co host who spends the whole evening making double entendres about the dress.

7) Get a satellite package if you can. Then you will be able to watch 50 something channels and nothing on.

8) Learn Spanish so that you can understand how truly awful it is.

9) In the summer you can sometimes watch bullfighting on three or four channels at the same time and in pre season often four channels will have inconsequential fixtures on at the same time.

10) The biggest audience for any programme in Spain this year so far has been Real Madrid getting trashed by Liverpool 4-0 at Anfield so maybe there is something good on every now and again.

Any more suggestions?

Friday, March 13, 2009

What You Must Know pt 5. Fiestas

If you come to live and work in Spain get used to the working hours first, they are best described as loose although very long as coffee in the middle of the morning can take an hour of ti me out of the day, and often does. What really makes you angry or delighted depending on your viewpoint though are the fiestas. What you must know about the fiestas is here therefore.

1) Every town, village and pueblito will have a patron saint and render homage to them in their local town fiestas.

2) The word "Fiesta" literally translated means, "damn fine excuse to pretend we are still practicing Catholics and therefore get a day off work".

3) Fiestas usually involve the playing with, torturing or receiving injuries from animals of various types. They should be viewed from this traditional viewpoint

4) Your arteries get a hiding at fiesta time as the street vendors selling deep fried dough in the form of buñuelos, churros, porras (Big churros), and other sugar coated, sugar infused or sugar bombed delicacies overwhelm you.

5) Spanish fiestas are loud and they usually are late. They go on into the night and sometimes start first thing in the morning too.

6) They sneak up on you. After ten years in my town the fiestas always happen when I am least expecting it. I only find out usually because there is a huge firework display going on at midnight for some reason on the first night for however long that i have managed to get to bed early.

7) Fireworks!!!! mmmm fireworks. I live in Valencia colloquially known as the land of the 3 fingered handshake due to their obsession with throwing fireworks as kids. All Valencians talk loud too because they have all been deafened by too many Mascletas and just to help you out I have posted one here. Stick with it until 5.46 mins for the conclusion it just gets louder and louder

Fallas de Valencia 2009 - Mascleta by Pirotecnia Penyarroja from Freakpyromaniacs on Vimeo.

8) The religious devotion on show is totally genuine of course. These people spend all year praying to the virgin and wrapping themselves in sackcloth and ashes.

9) The pueblos will have the Matanza at certain times of the year. This is not a fiesta for the squeamish nor vegertarians. This is where a pig, usually, is sacrificed and every single part of its body is used to make weird and wonderful (sic) concoctions and variations on sausages. Pay special attention to the pancakes with pig's blood.

10) Fiestas are great and what hold the community together in Spain. The whole year is devoted to preparing the fiestas in many parts and once they are gone, well there is always next year's to plan.

What are your experiences of Spanish fiestas

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

What you need to know pt4. Eating in Spain

The culinary experience in Spain is fantastic at best, (Apparently El Bulli which only opens for six months of the year is considered to be the best restaurant in the World by many) and salmonella inducing at worst (Anyone for mayonnaise on a pincho after a summer's day on the window of a Madrid bar?) However the basics that you need to know are the following;

1) The Menu del Día: It used to be obligatory (It may still be but I cannot find the link)if you were going to serve food at midday. Monday to Friday the Menu is very good value and usually involves three courses, a drink and coffee. It can cost anything from the 4.50 Euro Menu del Crisis currently very popular in the pueblos, to the 15-20 Euro more enticing nueva cocina in most big towns. You should be able to get a decent meal for around 8 Euros still.

2) It is always better value to go to a greasy spoon cafe and discover some part of an animal marinated in many types of tomato than to play it safe and go for the fast food option.

3) The Spanish eat late. Lunch starts at 2pm and will finish around 4pm and the evening meal will not start until 8.30pm at the earliest and usually, in Valencia for example, around 10pm or sometimes later in the summer.

4) The Spanish like to talk, and talk loudly, in restaurants. Kids are all over the place and adored. Get used to it.

5) In Asturias for example don't expect to do anything in the afternoon after a Menu because you will have eaten and drunk too much.

6) Bars and restaurants usually allow smoking even though it is often against the law. Places under 100m2 allow smoking if the note is on the door and places above 100m2 need two seperate areas for smokers and non-smokers (Take a tape measure with you) Apparently if you stick a hand written sign on the door saying you are allowed to smoke here then that is OK. (More info here)

7) Waiters are generally awful in many places (There are certain good ones but I am still to find more than a handful in Valencia) If you want service stand on the table and do a little dance.

8) The most unappetising sounding foods are often the best although desserts on the Menus are generally disappointing in most places.

9) Oh and real paella is chicken, rabbit, green beans and broad beans, no fish and no shellfish. Come to Valencia to get some.

10) If you have any more experiences then add them in the comments section....

Do You Twitter?

If you don't know what Twitter is right now you will do soon. Twitter is a tool that takes time to get but is based on the basic question "What are you doing right now?" However it would be better termed what are you focussing on right now? Anyway, I am using Twitter a lot to get news out of Spain, Valencia and my business and it is working in spades to get more interest in the subject. It is easy to follow on Twitter and easy to get rid of those who annoy you with their Tweets. If you want to sign up go to and follow me @grahunt.

I use a tool called Tweetdeck to get the best from it, (Google a search) and if you want to know how you can use Twitter in your business then go to this link and download the report on how to get targetted followers that can help your business, whatever it is.

Once you are signed up also sign up to Buzzable and go to the Spain group and you can find out what anyone in the World is tweeting about Spain and Spanish. Great tool.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

What you need to know pt3, Driving in Spain

Driving in Spain is fun on the open road as there is a huge country to be discovered and very few speed cameras out there in the middle of nowhere. However as you get into the big cities it becomes a lot less fun, or even funnier depending on your point of view.

What you need to know about this is the following:
1) You always have right of way if you have the loudest horn, are not nervous about sticking the front end of your car into oncoming traffic and don't mind a few bumps and scratches

2) You should always parallel park by going back until you hit the car behind, forward until you do the same to the car in front and so on until you are right into the space that is about two inches biugger than your car, or in some cases smaller.

3) Stopping at zebra crossings is not an option because if you stop for a pedestrian you will get back ended by someone who wonders why you have just stopped for no reason.

4) It is obligatory to use the car if it is new even if your local supermarket is just 100 yards away

5) Reversing up the motorway hard shoulder because you have missed your turn off is normal practice.

6) Red lights are a challenge rather than an order to stop. If you can sneak through a red light in your BMW in the same way a cyclist does because there is no traffic coming then so be it.

7) You are Alonso and everybody else is a Jensen Button type.

8) Roadsigns are there to confuse you and at best are just guidelines as opposed to rules and you always know better ie that is not a one way street, yes you can go into this no entry area, you can park on this side of the road

Which is the Most Useless Company, Iberdrola or Telefonica?

Following on from my Telefonica blogs recently I now have to say they have a competitor in the absolutely useless, don't know what they are doing, hugely frustrating having to have their service stakes, Iberdrola.

Iberdrola is the electricity supplier and they have recently annoyed everyone in Spain by estimating meter readings to cut costs rather than having to employ someone to actually read the meter, or heaven forbid having it computerised, meaning that they now have overestimated virtually everyone's bills giving themselves a nice little windfall. This is about customer service though, or lack of it.

At the start of February one of my clients moved into a house that had previously had the electricity cut off because of an account change and mix up over bills. In order to get the electric put back on I asked Iberdrola for the outstanding amount, get this, the total outstanding amount and it was paid and the electric put on, it took a couple of days but hey, this is Spain. So I got a call on Friday from the tenants, and yes these are the same tenants as the telefonica saga, poor people. The electric had just been cut off. I phoned up Iberdrola to ask what on Earth they were doing and they said there were unpaid bills from May and November 2008. As you can imagine this somewhat surprised me and I gave them the biggest verbal earbashing ever as they had supplied me with the total amount to reconnect and they had reconnected based on being paid up to date. The excuses were lame but suffice to say they reconnected within the hour thanks to their mistake and meanwhile my client has 10 days to pay the arrears that they said a month ago he didn't have.

I got a phone call on Monday from the tenants, they had been cut off again. In rather a large fury I rang Iberdrola again and got a very nice girl who took me through the whole process again before saying the operator on Friday had not rescinded the disconnection order and as soon as the computer found that the clients had the temerity to actually use any electric they had cut off again.

Meanwhile my client wants to pay this outstanding fee into the account that Iberdrola have supplied for payment and cannot do so because nobody at their call centre knows the details of the international banking codes, they can only get transfers from Spanish accounts apparently. (I know this is a lie but what can you do?)

Telefonica not to be outdone decided that they can not have pretenders to the crown of the worst company in Spain and so decided to charge my clients 110 Euros for 50 hours connection to the internet before they got the broadband line in. Did I mention that we ordered an "all you can eat" tariff for 24 Euros per month and therefore should not have been charged per call and that they only had this system for a week before I got them the broadband line? Thought not!

Monday, March 09, 2009

What you Must Do pt2. Learning Spanish Again.

For our second what you must know let us return to the issue of the language. If you are going to settle in Spain on a more permanent basis you need to learn at least a modicum of the language so that you can develop your proficiency further down the line. By starting now you give yourself the best chance of getting all of the best deals available without getting ripped off anywhere, very important in today's market of course. Also if you are setting up in business, doesn't it make sense to be able to aim at 100% of the market in your local area rather than just the local expat market? (Although there might be a lot of expats in your area, you are still missing the main part of your market without a basic grasp of Spanish)

There are many ways to learn Spanish and all have their pros and cons. However if you are struggling to move on from where you are at the moment or want to start right away these 2 courses will help you lots. They emphasise the importance of certain key words and phrases in the language and get you to perfect them. Click here to find out more about the first course and for the cost of just one or two private classes you have your own online teacher. The second one is here too. Compare contrast and get one. It will serve you well. If you have any questions later you can also get back to me via a quick mail and ask.

Speaking Spanish has been the most useful tool I have in building my life in Spain. Make sure you have the same tool.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

What you need to Know

If you are coming to live in Spain there are a few things you need to know about. I will be highlighting some of these over the next few weeks. However the first and most important is football. If you have never been here you need a rapid course in Spanish Football. The best place to get your grounding is
This site will tell you the basics about each club in the Primera Liga and go into greater depth on many of the better known clubs. It is growing by the day and is fast becoming the reference point for all Spanish football news.
What if you don't like ootball? Well there are other countries you know but to get a real taste of the pop culture of Span there is nothing that is as good as a conversation starter. Let's face it, the weather is not much of a chat when it is sunny most of the time.

Fallas 2009 is happening right now

Well the preparations for it are happening. On my other blog Houses for sale in Spain I have written about the busy week coming up with photos before Fallas 2009 starts in earnest.

Remember if you like fireworks, noise, chocolate with churros, buñuelos, art and high culture, religious devotion for just a few days a year and tradition then Valencia is the place to be between the 15th and 19th of March. The best way to see in the spring is the Fallas fiestas in Valencia so get yourself here and if you are going to visit then get in touch and we could meet up for a drink.

By the way, if you don't like noise and fireworks make you nervous then steer clear of Valencia until the 20th of March.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

The Madness of Monday

Last Monday there was a small event in Valencia that went mostly unreported but it required special police patrols, changes of traffic directions and the patience of a saint. It was probably one of the most successful pieces of advertising I have ever seen. Media Markt announced that Monday was we pay your VAT day. I was going to go on Tuesday to get the new Mac on which I am writing this but thought, well 16% less today than tomorrow, so I went.
I wasn't prepared for it thought and to buy the product get a receipt and wait for clearance to get through the tills took me 3 and a half hours. I have a spanking new MacBook now but everyone else in Valencia has something too. The doors opened at 6am and by 9am apparently they had sold out of the Acer Aspire netbooks they were advertising at 149 Euros. I got the penultimate MacBook but iWork had to be ordered for me because, guess what? there were not any copies left at 11.30am.
Fantastic marketing effort then because they announced it as "We Pay Your VAT". Well if they had said 16% off everything in the store then they wouldn't have had so much success, it doesn't sound too good in the current climate. The thing they played with is that everyone in Spain hates paying tax. I bought my Mac and got a receipt as I can discount another 16% against income for VAT because it is still there on the bill but a discount has been applied. 32% off a Mac sounds good to me though.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009


We have a job at the moment repairing a roof which is leaking into a bathroom. So what happens as soon as we take the ceiling out? It rains, and when it rains it pours of course. Tipping it down for two days now here and today at 11am it was totally dark as you can see on the photo as I was going past the soon to be unfinished forever football ground. (Valencia have no money and building has stopped at the moment)

So rain coming in gives us the total story of where the water is getting in and allows us to repair it correctly.

In 1996/7 Ronaldo scored this goal

It was made into an ad for Nike and the seven Deportivo players involved took Nike to court for not having paid for their appearance in the video. The case has finally been resolved today in the Spanish high Court in favour of the company and therefore the players get nothing. 12 years of consistently showing yourself up against at the time the best player in the World for nothing, madre mia!

New Service From Valencia Property

If you are selling your property in Spain and wish to give it that extra push which may make it sell quicker you need to have all of the advantages possible. The Valencia Property website is just one way that you can get the message out there of your property being for sale. We are not stupid enough to think that everyone buying a property is going to come through our door. Therefore we now have another couple of options to add to our services if you are selling.

Firstly we can take an exclusive on and promote your site through the Multi Listing Service that is used by the major agencies in the country. This cannot be done for properties without an exclusive as the signed contract must be produced to get on the list. This takes your property into the listings of well over 700 agencies around the country and gives it a lot more exposure. If you are an British seller who has reduced the price as we have recommended to take advantage of the pound/Euro rate this will give you a huge advantage over other nationalities selling as they are receiving Euros. This service is free apart from the commission on sale.

We can also now add in your own mini site which will be optimised for search engines so that they find you and get you more visits. You can use this site to promote the property yourself and it will include video, highly tuned descriptions to make sure that the page ranks highly for the keywords in Google and it will be bilingual to take advantage of the Spanish market too. For 297 Euros (VAT Included) we can have your site up and running in just a few days.

If you want either of these new services then get in touch and we will talk with you about the advantages of both for you. Obviously you need to get the greatest advantage possible in the current market so our suggestion is to go for the mini site and the exclusivity so as to gain as much competitive advantage as possible.

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