Tuesday, July 26, 2011

260000 euros La Pobla. Huge six Bedroom house that I have just shown.

I like showing this six bedroom house for ale in La Pobla,especially on a day when it looks like this.

830m2 plot 300m2 house
6 bedrooms 3 bathrooms
Great pool

Well worth a look at 260k. I almost bought it six years ago and it is still a tempter.


Sunday, July 24, 2011


The indignados march across Spain culminated in Madrid today. Read about it here

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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

270000 euros house near Villamarchante.

A lovely four bedroom house for sale between Villamarchante and Cheste. Fantastically looked after with plenty of space and two living areas, two kitchens, two large covered terraces and 1000m2 of plot with outside kitchen, bread oven, wood store, garage and outside dining areas


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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Waiters Who Just Don't Get It | Entrepreneur Solo

Waiters in Valencia sometimes leave a little bit to be desired. I thought you might like two examples of why and finally a good example. Read on.


Saturday, July 16, 2011

Are the Spanish Banks Preparing to Break Ranks | Houses for Sale in Spain


With the new mortgage offer from Bankinter a first bank has broken ranks and actually mentioned that the "return the keys" mortgage is not a bad thing if they are lending responsibly. The article investigates what this means for you as a prospective mortgage buyer when you buy a Spanish property.


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Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Another great review of my web marketing for estate agents book :-)

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Graham Hunt - Google+

Just to let you know I am on Google Plus and you can find out more about me and what I share here on Google Plus. If you are there contact me or add me into a circle to keep up with what is happening in Spain

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Visiting Valencia? Where to stay? The Options as the City is Full!

If you are thinking of visiting Valencia you really should be booking ahead because the city has so many events on over the summer that many times you will find no vacancies or only the expensive options left. This post will help you to find that elusive good value place to stay in Valencia for your visit so you can enjoy the city to its fullest extent this summer.

When are you coming to stay?


Saturday, July 09, 2011

More of Valencia

Valencia as seen from the Torres Seeranos


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Friday, July 08, 2011

Spanish culture, immigration and bad weather!

Great story about the cold snap in 1956. As I read this it was 29 degree at 1.30 in the morning

Spanish culture, immigration and bad weather!



A few days ago I had a fascinating conversation with a couple of Spanish friends of mine in Valencia – and then saw, by pure chance, in a different location altogether, a most remarkable photograph.  The interesting thing is that both the conversation and photograph threw some new light (for me) on the culture of Spain and, most particularly, the culture of the Valencia region of Spain.

What on earth am I talking about?

Well, in the Valencia area of Spain it is notable how many Spaniards speak absolutely fluent French.  In fact, there is a coastal village (Piles) close to where I live where you will encounter only French being spoken in some of the cafes.  This may not seem too strange – until you realize that the French being spoken is by Spaniards who possess it as their mother tongue!

Now, it is fair to say that up until a few years ago French was the obligatory second language of the Spanish (it is now English), so you would expect many people to have some grasp of the language.  Equally, French is very close to the Catalan dialect of the Valencia and Catalan regions of Spain (on the northern and mid eastern sideboards of Spain).  However, complete fluency – particularly amongst those of late middle age and older?

The truth is that Spain, now suffering the problems of mass immigration, was, at one time, somewhere that had the reverse problem.  Indeed, particularly during the Franco era (1939-1975) it had several waves of emigration.  The last of these was in the mid/late 1950s and early 1960s.

Of course, you may think that the emigration was initiated by the oppressive policies of Franco (which certainly did not help!).  However, in the late mid/late 1950s and early 1960s it was the weather that appears to have been the initiator.  Even more surprising is that the weather that caused the trouble was not extremes of heat – but cold.



In 1956 the Valencia region (and most of the rest of  Spain) suffered a period of intense cold remembered as La Gran Ola de Frío de Febrero de 1956 (The Great Freeze of February 1956).  Temperatures went down to -7 degrees Celsius in Castellon and Valencia and down to -4 degrees Celsius in Alicante.  The lowest temperature recorded was -32 degrees Celsius in Leridá.  It is an example of this that I saw in the photograph I mentioned earlier.  This shows the only hotel in existence, at the time, on Gandia beach surrounded by thick snow that continues across the sand to the sea itself.  Needless to say, snow on the warm, temperate, sea level coast of Valencia is almost unknown.

In short, in 1956 it froze – and snowed in areas that virtually never experience freezing temperatures, let alone sustained cold temperatures and snow.

The trouble is that the ‘extreme’ cold temperatures did terrible damage to the citrus trees of Valencia which produced one of the most important cash crops of the region – within a society very dependent upon the agricultural industry.  Of course, it was not just the citrus trees in Valencia that were damaged but also inland vineyards and other productive plants.  Tragically, the damage done by the cold was so bad that the trees and vineyards remained unproductive for several years.

PUERTO DE POLLENSA 1956 (Rafel Payeras i Genovart - courtesey of www.marcomoilina.wordpress.com)

PUERTO DE POLLENSA 1956 (Rafel Payeras i Genovart - courtesey of www.marcomoilina.wordpress.com)

So, as you can imagine, there was terrible hardship.  The very source of income for many people had disappeared and struck an enormous blow at an area that then had no significant tourism and that was suffering from Franco’s policy of isolating Spain from the rest of Europe.

The only answer, of course, was for many of the people in the Valencia area to immigrate to Northern Europe to obtain work.  This they did in huge numbers – fortunately encountering Northern Europe just as it was starting to boom after the recent war years.  Cheap labour was welcome and many people not only found work in France and other European countries but then settled down to live permanently where they had work, at least until things changed in Spain.

Indeed, it was not until the early 1970s that many Spanish people living away from Spain returned to the country.  By that time Franco’s grip was less brutal and his health was clearly failing.  By the time he died (in 1975) large numbers of Spaniards were already returning to Spain and his death accelerated this movement – the citrus groves and agriculture having long since recovered.

Of course, a high proportion of emigrant Spaniards had gone to France and, over the previous fifteen or twenty years, had started families – the children of whom had grown up speaking French and had gone to French schools.  Indeed, their first experience of Spain may often have been when they returned.   These ‘children’, of course, are now in their late forties…

All of this I find interesting not least because I have noticed a couple of traits amongst my Spanish friends that seem to have some connection with their recent history as immigrants.  These may not be true of the overall culture of Spain but certainly are reasonably true of the Valencia area.

The first trait is the attractive tolerance (of most of the Spaniards I know) to immigrants in Spain – albeit that this tends to extend to North European immigrants rather than Muslims (who seem less popular).  I think this tolerance comes from having either been immigrants themselves or having parents who had experienced life as an immigrant.

The second trait is, perhaps, less constructive.  The Spanish are very ‘home based’ and are reluctant to move out of their local area whether that means moving within Spain itself or (dread the thought!) abroad.  I wonder whether this is a reaction to having to immigrate in previous generations?   I think any of us would find that understandable and hard-wired into the modern culture of Spain.

However, nonetheless, I fear the present economic crisis in Spain will be almost as much of an initiator to emigrate for the Spanish as the cold in 1955.  To some extent this is already starting to happen with the Spanish having to balance their reluctance to leave Spain against the nigh impossibility of gaining decent work here.

So expect the culture of Spain to be buffeted again in the years to come as Spaniards return speaking…German, I imagine, and English – rather than as much French as in the past…


The Big Issue – how immigration is changing the face of Spain

La gran ola de frío de febrero de 1956


Original Page: http://www.culturespain.com/2011/07/07/spanish-culture-and-bad-weather/

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Monday, July 04, 2011

The Spanish Government, Banks and Repossessions. | Houses for Sale in Spain

What's your opinion of the laws regarding repossessions in Spain? Should Dación en Pago be allowed and should the banks be forced to pay the consequences of their irresponsibility and fecklessness?


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Saturday, July 02, 2011

Living in the Turia Valley near Valencia

I took a quick video this evening overlooking the Turia Valley from the small hill at Tos Pelat. It references a carbuncle in the background but that is the only one we have really. Remember that one of the things that you are buying into when you buy a property for sale in Spain is the lifestyle and the surroundings rather just than the house itself.


Spanish Property Using the iPhone and Photosynth‬‏, A quick Video

I love playing with iMovie but playing with the iPhone, the Photosynth app and even using Snapseed for the iPad allows me to make this video. Music by Tom Robinson again "Spain". So Panoramas of Valencia property with a bit of lifestyle thrown in there too for good measure.

Garden looking good this morning

Our garden taken with the photosynth app on the iPhone. Well worth a look if you have one.


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You need to understand Spanish to get it all but the cartoon will mean you get some of it even if you don't.

How Spain became Españistan is an acerbic look at ten years of excess in the Spanish real estate sector. I tweeted this a few weeks ago but still worth a look.


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Ebay Auctions of Spanish Stuff

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