Today we interview Christoph, a German expat living in Barcelona. He tells us what the real estate market looks like in Spain, how to get started and how the real estate company he co founded is educating others on property investing.
What we talk about:
- How Christoph got started in the world of financial independence
- The current real estate market in Spain
- Can anyone invest in Spain?
- How he finds properties and what to look for
- What Blue Bricks does
BTW, we’ve also got a snazzy Christmas Giveaway going on at the moment – prizes include a free ticket to next year’s FI Europe Retreat, 1h of Coaching and some great FI books. Click here to find out more 😉
The current Spanish real estate market
Christoph has been dabbling in the Spanish real estate market for over 2 years now, and he tells us there are a few advantages to investing in Spain, the biggest one being is that there isn’t much government intervention when it comes to buying, renovating and selling houses, and that really, anyone can invest in Spain (although Non EUs have a high price to pay).
Say your property is creating 12,000€ in rental gross income per year.
Any EU resident: You are taxed 19% after deductible costs, meaning you would pay 800€
Non EU: No deductibles. Tax is 24%, meaning you would have to pay a crazy 3,000€
Christoph tells us it’s very easy to invest in property if you are an EU citizen. All you need is a NIE (Non-Resident Identification Number) which costs 10€ and sign a few papers and you’re good to go!
How do you find properties?
Christoph now manages a company that invests in real estate (more on that below 😉), but they started out like any other individual investor: online.
Using the right websites, he can use interesting tools that allow him to filter houses using the functionality of ‘lowest price per square meter’. Digging through whatever turns up, you occasionally find a few gems.
Now, Christoph and his co founders have their own network of agents and investors who let them know when an interesting flat is on sale.
Christoph tells us buying prices range from 60-100k€, renovating costs 20-30k€ and they sell at 130-160k€, all in about 6 months.
They make sure to buy flats over 70sqm and rectangular.
He also tells us that there are a lot of opportunities when buying commercial properties. Although there is more paperwork, they are usually bigger, cheaper and easier to renovate. And one other amazing feature about Valencia is that ground floor apartments can be rented out as holiday rental. #airbnbherewecome
My Blue Bricks
Christoph, along with his co founders Erwin and Adria started Blue Bricks two years ago to have a good legal framework to invest in properties in Spain. They are not quite a crowdfunding platform but the concept is the same; anyone can invest some money, follow the project and gain some of the return.
The amazing part of the company is the community – other people are continuously offering advice and suggestions, and it’s really built on trust. Also, every 2 weeks they bring people on trips to Valencia and show them the properties they are doing up (I (Araminta) have been to one of them!).
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