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Episode 42: Lyndsey who purchased in Mil Palmeras

Episode 42: Lyndsey who purchased in Mil Palmeras
Podcast host




Beth Davison

Podcast location

Relocated from



Mil Palmeras

Podcast agent

Real estate company

Tune in this week as we hear how Lyndsey discovered her dream property in Mil Palmeras after a chance drive through the area. Currently working as an NHS Manager, she looks forward to retiring with her partner and spend six months of the year in Spain. We discuss how she managed to under offer, why location is key and the spontaneity of Spanish living.

Show Notes:

  • [2:00] How Lyndsey negotiated and under offered
  • [5:50] Why she didn’t let Brexit influence their buying decision
  • [6:49] What they got with their budget
  • [11:03] Their relationship with their agent
  • [13:02] The importance of confidently knowing the area
  • [5:17] What Lyndsey advises when buying a property in Spain


Leigh’s Estates


Read Full Transcript


Welcome to the Spanish property podcast where we interview people who recently purchased their dream home in Spain.

They tell us what worked, what didn’t and what they’d do differently next time.

I’m Beth Davison and today I’m speaking with Lyndsey from York.

Along with her husband David she purchased her dream home in Mil Palmeras and is living proof that sometimes the dream property finds you instead of the other way around.

Lyndsey worked with the estate agent Leigh’s Estates and to find her dream home in Spain.  
Check out the show notes at to find links and resources mentioned in this episode


Lyndsey:  My name is Lyndsey and I'm an NHS manager working in community health alongside district nurses and physiotherapists within an integrated team. Myself and my partner, David, purchased a property in Mil Palmeras. It's about forty minutes down from Alicante. That's how I describe it because most people don't know the area.

Beth:  What started this whole journey? Had you been to Alicante before?

Lyndsey:  My partner has had a property in Spain for nearly twenty years in a slightly different area which is more inland. Our requirements changed, and I suppose what we mean by that is that we realised the area that we were in was not really where we wanted to be.

It didn't have easy access to the coast without a vehicle. It was more expat than feeling as if you were in actual Spain. So, we wanted something that was more Spanish and we wanted something with easier access to the coast and everything that that offers.

So, a number of years ago we started thinking about what area we wanted to be in and, as part of that, we started using a beach that was very close to Mil Palmeras and started looking at the properties around there and quite by chance just drove past it and stopped to look just one day. Which then led us on the journey, which then we eventually bought the property.

Beth:  I love that. You were just driving past. It feels like luck, or fate, or whatever you want to call it.

Lyndsey:  It was something that we wouldn't have probably looked at that time because it was quite big, and probably would have been out of our range at the time, but we were really interested to look inside it. So, another year it was still up for sale, or it may have been later on in the same year. I can't remember now. We contacted the estate agent who took us for a viewing. We went and had a second viewing and then we put in an offer which we didn't think would be accepted and wasn't accepted. But subsequently, further down the line it was actually accepted. So, it all sort of snowballed and happened very quickly, actually.

Beth:  Oh wow, that's interesting. So, you under offered, and then the seller refused, and then obviously it sat on the market a little longer and eventually the seller... That's great. You must feel like you got a bit of a bargain.

Lyndsey:  Yeah, yeah it was great. I suppose what precipitated it was that we put our house on the property at the same time. So David, my partner, put his existing house on the property because we thought we'd struggle selling that property just because it was, historically... When it was built, opposite his property, there was going to be a commercial area which happened during the downturn in the economy, a number of years ago, and it was never built.

So, subsequently there was a hill, which then transformed into a huge hole ready for a build, but has remained just a huge hole. So, we thought we better get our house on the market because it could take a long time to sell.

We put it on the market with Sasha from the estate agents. It was actually when we were there for a two week period, when we put the offer in on the Mil Palmeras property, when she actually rang us before we actually left. I think it was the day before we left. She said that she actually got a viewing. I think it sold... Yeah, from putting it on the market and we had accepted the offer, within a week, something like that, which was very unexpected.

Beth:  Yeah, not very common. When things like that happen you can be stuck in situations when you're trying to sell. It's fantastic that all worked out for you. It does feel slightly fated. You must have been thrilled.

Lyndsey:  Yeah, yeah, so, Sasha came back to us and asked us what we wanted to do about the other property but my partner said, "No, I'm not prepared to move on their offer." We went back to the vendors and they accepted. So, it all sort of coincided, luckily for us, at the right time to buy it.

The downside for us was obviously Brexit and the drop in the Euro which had an impact from a point of view of the rate of exchange. Because we got it at the right... we didn't think we were going to get it anyway, so it wasn't something that put us off. We were prepared for that, but it was just unfortunate that it happened at that time.

Beth:  Yes, totally, I have discussed Brexit with a few other people and how that influenced their decisions. Obviously it didn't influence your decision enough not to buy and not to sell.

Lyndsey:  No, we didn't think it was going to happen, so when our property sold, and the price was right, we just jumped at that. So, that wasn't an issue.

It wasn't an English buyer. I think it was a Belgium buyer, actually. Whether that made a difference from their perspective I don't know.

I think once we got the Mil Palmeras property at the price that we wanted, we calculated what that would mean from a rate of exchange. We still felt that we were getting such good value that it was worth accepting that drop in the rate of exchange. So, we still wanted to progress with the sale really.

Beth:  Fantastic, and speaking of value what was the budget that you had in mind and how many bedrooms? What did you manage to get for your money?

Lyndsey:  We didn't have any idea like three beds... we didn't have criteria. It was more about the location, as it always is. Location, location, it was in the right location and it was more of a modern style house.

We went in and I suppose it just felt right for us so we've ended up with actually the equivalent of what we have. We have three bedrooms and we got three bedrooms. This is a detached property. It's private and it's a walled property and it has a private pool which, obviously, we didn't have in the previous property. So it's larger, but we're not getting more bedroom size, but that wasn't really a priority for us, it was more about the location and the style of the property.

Beth:  It sounds like, because of your negotiating, you managed to stay on budget, roughly?

Lyndsey:  Yeah, yeah, we did. Yeah, we stuck to our price and yeah we got it for what we wanted. We don't know what we're going to need to spend on it. It's a relatively new property. It's only seven years old, so we're hoping that there would be just a few tweaks and we should be OK. Yeah, it's all good.

Beth:  When did you complete? Recently?

Lyndsey:  We completed on about the 14th or the 17th of January. I can't remember the exact date.

Beth:  So, really recently.

Lyndsey:  Yeah, yeah, very. We went there to exchange but just due to some legal technicalities that were held up with the land registry and it didn't actually complete until we came back off holiday. So, we've never actually spent a night in the house yet at the new property. We'll be going back out in March and that will be the first time that we'll be actually spending any length of time there. So, we're booked to go back at the back end of March.

Beth:  Lovely. So, you're going to use it as a holiday home, for short term stays, or do you foresee that it will be longer and longer periods out there?

Lyndsey:  Yeah, a bit of both. I still work, so I'll be using it for holidays, primarily. My partner doesn't work so he can possibly spend a bit more time there if he chooses to. Long term, once we're both retired, then we'll probably do six and six months, but not necessarily a straight six months. We'll split our time between the UK and Spain.

Beth:  That's so nice, and this time around you will escape some of the cold weather, unless it perks up by the end of March, which is possible.

Lyndsey:  Yeah, yeah, I'm hoping that the weather will be a little warmer in March. It was quite cold around January.

Beth:  So, David bought twenty years ago?

Lyndsey:  He bought about twenty years ago, yes.

Beth:  Did he find it very different buying this time around do you know? Were there many differences?

Lyndsey:  Well, at the time that he bought, obviously, he had to go through the whole process of getting the NEI or NIE (I get it the wrong way around) So I think the process was less streamlined than it is now. So, I think it's a much easier process to do that now. But, at the time he did it, it was the start of the boom and it was probably a little bit more complicated.

It didn't necessarily feel complicated. I think it's just because you're not able to have those conversations with... We're not Spanish speakers, so we're very much reliant on the estate agent and the solicitors to facilitate any issues that arose around this issue with land registry. It was out of our control anyway, really. We couldn't have influenced it. You just feel a little bit less in control, I think, because of the language barrier.

Beth:  You mentioned your agent. I was going to say that it sounds like they really went out to bat for you. They renegotiated, you stuck to your offer, they kind of fought your cause. What was your relationship like with your agent?

Lyndsey:  It worked for us. So, when we went to view the property for the first time. Sasha, there was no hard sell. She opened the door and let us wander around, answered the questions that we brought. I think we both felt that wouldn't want somebody following us around, asking too many questions. We just wanted to get a feel for it. So, her style worked for us from the point of view that she just allowed us that time to do what we needed to do.

Beth:  Fantastic, with the language barrier, did you feel supported throughout? Was there ever a problem with communication?

Lyndsey:  No, no, no, even post sale Sasha, from the estate agents, has been really helpful. She's contacted the garden and pool guy to get a quote from him. She's got copies of the keys and posted them over to us. She's, from the point of view of contractors, she's got names. She's been very helpful, actually, yeah, very helpful.

Beth:  That's fantastic. Because it was a long term process for you... You initially saw the house and did you say you waited a year before?

Lyndsey:  Yeah, I think it was over a year. We tend to go June and September, so it wasn't last year June and September, it was the previous June, I think, that we originally saw it. The offer was declined. We went back in September, so I remember they were saying, "Do you want to go see it?" I said, "Well, there's no point because they haven't accepted the offer." So, we didn't go to see it. It's hard to remember the timeline isn't it.

Beth:  Yeah, I'm sure it all sort of blends together. I've met people that have said, "Follow your gut and dive in." Then I've met people who really took their time. Would you advise what you've done, to take a good long think about things and see the lay of the land before diving in and committing to anything?

Lyndsey:  I'd hate to think that I didn't know the area. I find it really bizarre when you watch these programmes on TV when people go to an area that they have never been and buy a property. You just have no idea what  it's going to be like in the height of summer, what it's going to be like in the winter. You're just going to be walking in cold.

Obviously, David's twenty years of experience in and around the area, so we feel confident that we've moved to what we want and left what we don't want. We know where we are. We know what amenities are around. So, we feel confident from that knowledge.

So, I think it would be very difficult to do that without. I suppose that's where you might rely more upon an estate agents that's got a good knowledge of the area to support you with some of that because otherwise you've nowhere to glean that information from.

Beth:  It does sound like everything fell into place for you. So, this question you may not have an answer to it. Was there anything that you found particularly challenging or something that you would do differently if you were to begin the process all over again?

Lyndsey:  Something that we'd do differently.. I think we did know what the selling costs were, so we did have a good idea, an estimate about that, but I think that probably needs pinning down. If you were interested in a property I would be speaking to the solicitors and asking them to do an estimate of what the purchasing fees will be and all the taxes and everything else on top. That can be a real shock if you weren't prepared for that.

You can have a budget and that could just completely blow your budget once you've considered in all the other taxes and things that have to be paid. It's not the same as what we have in the UK. Even the fact that they withhold ten percent for any unpaid utility bills. If it's forty, then... even I can't remember and it's that recent. They hold some money for that then they hold some money for a year that you then get back a year later.

So, there's lots of different things that happen so it's really worthwhile sitting down with a solicitor and then giving you a quote and an idea of all the additional costs there are as part of the selling fee. I think that's the one thing that I recommend people to do. Always have that in mind when you're viewing because it can be a considerable amount of money.

Beth:  Yeah, if it was going to be something like ten percent and you haven't budgeted for it at all. Presumably, by then you're so far down the process that it’s difficult and stressful. Good advice.

Lyndsey:  I think we were told around fourteen percent and it definitely was, if not a little bit more than that when you add everything together. So, that's the one thing I'd be recommending people to do.

Beth:  For you it's going to be fully worth it. My final question is what do you enjoy most about it? Since you've not been, what are you most looking forward to at the end of March, about life in Spain?

Lyndsey:  The house itself is beautiful. So, we've already purchased most of the furniture to go in it which we'll be driving over, so just getting ready to walk into. The next time we go I think the restriction of the old property was that it was the driving to and from the coast, so whatever you did you had to factor in, "Well, if we go there how are we going to get back? Are we going to get a taxi, or are we going to get a bus? What are we going to do?" So, it restricted the spontaneity of just doing something there and then. Whereas, with the Mil Palmeras property, if we choose to go out down to the beach and then stay there and have a drink in the beach bar until 7:00PM and then walk back, we can because we're not having to think about driving and getting back to the house. I think it's just that ability to do what we want when we want and not have to think about or worry about anything else.

Beth:  It's going to be so exciting. I can hear it in your voice. It's going to be amazing when you get there.

Lyndsey:  Yeah, yeah hopefully.

Beth:  I love the idea of you driving with a bunch of furniture. It's going to be great and get to set it all up from scratch. It's the best bit!

Lyndsey:  Yeah, we're probably going to have to do two journeys.

Beth:  Well, I hope it goes really, really well. Thank you so much for chatting to me today and for giving really good advice for any future buyers. Thank you so much.

Lyndsey:  OK, alright, thank you.

Beth:  Cheers, bye.

Lyndsey:  Alright, thanks, bye.


Thank you for listening and thanks to Lyndsey for sharing her experiences.

And to Leigh’s Estates for making this episode possible. I really enjoyed the comparison between David’s buying process twenty years ago and what he and Lyndsey experienced this time around and that they actually happened upon their dream property just by driving past it. I guess you never know when inspiration will strike.

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Tune in next time when I speak with Jack from Holland. He worked with Skyline Costa Blanca to find his dream home in Spain.

And although he’s had experience with the Dutch property market he found out just how different and how much easier the Spanish property buying process could be.

I’m Beth Davison and you’ve been listening to the Spanish property podcast. I’ll see you next time!


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