Comaskey have been selling property on the Costa Blanca since 2002 and we have a magnificent portfolio of new builds, resale’s, commercial and golf property.
What do we mean by golf property? In the early 2000s there was a dramatic increase in the number of Florida style golf resorts. The big ones were Polaris World- which actually consisted of 5 or six different resorts, La Finca built by the Villa Martin group, Roda golf, a Polaris World spin off (they would really love when I say that but in reality, they copied much of the Polaris model, just not doing the operation quite as well.
The developers built a golf course and either sold off the plots to individual builders like they do in Las Colinas golf and country club or as in the case of say Villamartin, they built the properties themselves. Theoretically, the developers then built facilities like bars, restaurants and hotels which were designed to provide services to residents and attract outsiders to the resorts. I say theoretically because once the Spanish property bust hit in 2008, the money dried up and in many cases so did the services.
Intercontinental for example ran two five star hotels on two of the Polaris World resorts. We invested our own money in El Vale a luxury development by Polaris just a few kms away from La Torre, on the basis that the 5 star intercontinental hotel would make the resort a serious contender for a PGA event. It’s easy to be wise after the event, but once the crash came, Intercontinental pulled out of the two existing hotels and the El Vale Hotel remains ten years later an expensive hole in the Murcia ground. In fairness, the golf course is so good there that the Spanish Seniors open was held in El Vale a few years back but still the value of the properties there has been cut in half.
We think that now in 2017 its worth taking another look at property on golf courses around the Costa Blanca.
Here are a few reasons why you should be considering buying a golf property.
- The properties on the golf courses tend to be larger than on the coast- the land was cheaper so they could afford to give us more space.
- Golf. Sounds obvious but having an option to walk out your front door and be on a golf fairway two minutes later, is the attraction we all love. It’s sunny on the Costa Blanca so we can golf here 320 days or more per year. Comaskey with certain projects like Las Colinas golf and country club include free membership for our buyers- a saving of a least a few thousand euro. Contact Claire to find out more on this exclusive offer: [email protected]
- Accessibility- as a property owner you are more likely to get a tee time, at a discounted rate. We absolutely do not encourage you to go and hit a few holes in the evenings bypassing the marshals, but it has been done!!
- Value for money. Projects which folded due to the crash have been re started by the receivers or the banks often at dramatically reduced prices. Terrazas de La Torre or Saurines as it’s now known has been re-launched as part of a multi-bank deal. The golf is still wonderful having been designed by Jack Nicklaus but we can now sell brand new, never been lived in apartments which we marketed at 120,000 euro in 2007 for just 60,000 euro.
- Lower maintenance. We have so many owners of golf property who fly into Alicante or San Javier on a Friday for example, (thanks Ryan air!!) play golf Friday, twice Saturday, Sunday morning and fly back home that evening. There is no need to clean pools, clip hedges or any upkeep- the resorts take care of that so literally you fly here, golf, and fly home.
- You never know who you’ll meet! One day last spring during a Paddys Point golf society outing we chatted to PGA professional Bradley Dredge on the putting green, met actress Denise Van Outen on the course and had a beer with Kenny Dalglish back in the club house- all on the same day! Golf is massive in Spain and celebrities enjoy it just as much as we do.
- Facilities on your door step. As well as golf and the free putting greens, driving ranges etc. Different courses and resorts provide multiple facilities for their residents. Mar Menor golf has a huge Padel tennis facility, gym, tennis, and outdoor exercise classes.
- Kids clubs. La Manga runs the best summer kid’s clubs in our opinion on the Costa Blanca. Lee Westwood ran the summer school a few years back. Also, the British Davis cup team and Gordon Strachan’s football school were all there at exactly the same time.
In the interest of balance, we have to mention a few reasons why buying a property on a golf course is not a good idea. (And we’re supposed to be sellers, the irony!!!)
- Often the golf course is off the beaten track and usually is not near to a beach. Exceptions to this rule are villa Martin and Las Ramblas- both less than ten minutes by car to the beaches of the Costa Blanca.
- The courses can be quiet during the winter months- a blessing for some but certainly if you have kids, it can be tough for them.
- Things don’t always turn out as you think they will- Look at Vista Bella golf course for example. Incredibly, the golf course is divide by the border of two different town halls- 13 holes one side, 5 holes on the other. A planning permission dispute meant that for the past 7 years, Vista Bella is a 13-hole golf course. Well, they actually share a few of the greens, St. Andrews style to ensure you can play 18 holes but with balls flying over your head as you tee off on the 14th, it’s not ideal!
- Not everyone likes golf. If your husband or wife is a non-golfer, then it can make trips to Spain much less fun.
- Living on a Golf Course in Spain can be more expensive than living on a beach property. Community fees in Riquelme near to Murcia City are 200 euro per month and that’s not uncommon. If you buy a property in La Zenia you might be looking at community fees of 300 euro per year!!
- Rental. This is an interesting one. I know many people who only want to rent golf properties thus providing a nice rental income for the owners. Equally I know holiday makers here in Spain who only want the city or the beach- I suppose you can’t be all things to all tourists but rental returns on the golf courses are not as high as they are on the beaches as a general rule. In 2016 – 75 million people visited Spain and here on the Costa Blanca we are really in need of more rental property regardless of where it is so everything will be rented during the peak months this year.
- Too many people on the golf courses. I mentioned already that so many people, especially Scandinavians will play 18 holes in the morning and 18 more in the afternoon. This can mean the courses are sometimes playing a bit slow and maybe you will struggle to get a buggy.
Some random thoughts on buying golf property on the Costa Blanca.
Despite all the negatives mentioned above, there is still a huge demand for golf property in Spain.
Here are a few general tips we think worth considering before you buy a property in Spain, especially a golf property.
- Get the right Spanish Estate Agent first. We had clients who paid tens of thousands more by going directly to the developer- Comaskey have the very best deals and discounts available on the market which we offer to our customers.
- Decide why you are buying it. Are you just looking to play golf with family and friends? If so that’s great, if you are thinking of family holidays with the kids, maybe you should look at Cabo Roig or Playa Flamenca instead?
- Are you thinking of moving to Spain? If so, then again, a beach property in La Zenia might be the answer. You need to be close to schools, medical centres etc- not so easy to do if you are looking for golf property.
- Are you going to rent? Companies like Comaskey can help but would you consider renting the property yourself on Air Bnb? Check out golf Properties in Spain on Air Bnb and you’ll immediately get a true, up to date idea of the demand, prices etc.
- Be tax compliant- Spanish solutions and most good legal firms in Spain can ensure that you are paying the right amount of tax. We also tell our buyers that they are not obliged either morally or legally to pay one euro more in tax than they should – or just make sure you are not making any enemies on the Spanish Tax department- declare your rental income and pay your taxes!
- Only use officially rental agents, tax firms etc. Why? Not because they are better but they are insured, protected and all the invoices you pay are tax deductible.
- Take your time when you are coming to view. Again, clients make mistakes by not contacting a registered estate agent, based in Spain, like Comaskey to help them with the deal.
- Look at all options. I had a client with 400,000 euro to spend on golf properties last summer. We looked at many options and he almost bought a villa in Las Ramblas. Rental return was a big issue however so when I showed him the apartments on La Manga, which are part of the resort, come with a rental return guaranteed, no maintenance, no bills and up to 120 days free stay in the Marriott resort with a La Manga club card included- he bought five of them for the same price as the Las Ramblas Villa. They sell for just 80,000 euro each!!! That’s what we mean; go into this with an open mind. Our client now has a certain rental return, he can sell off an apartment or two if he ever needs to. He’s got no maintenance and his family will take full advantage of living on one of the best resorts in all of Europe. That’s clever property buying!
- Get the best deal. We offer up to 10,000 euro in discounts, cash back and deals on certain resorts here at Comaskey. Why would you pay 10,000 euro more for the same property? Take your time, shop around and always come back to us- one email to Claire: [email protected] may well save you thousands!!
- Would you consider becoming a golf marshal? A good friend of ours John is a marshal in Villa Martin. He scoots around in his buggy talking to golfers, advising them which club to hit etc and spends his afternoons in the sun three days per week. In return he plays golf for free in Villa martin, Las Ramblas or La Finca anytime he wants. The big thing however, apart from free golf is the social aspect. Let me know if you want me to introduce you to him and he’ll show you the ropes.
- Make sure there is a Ryanair airport close by. I know the Irish carrier flies to most parts of Spain these days but on the Costa Blanca we have two international airports- this is so important if you are dropping over for a quick couple of rounds and accessibility to a full range of flights is important.
- Think about Bank Repossession property in Spain. Comaskey have contracts with the major banks in Spain to shift their property including on many golf resorts- Mar Menor, Roda, Vista Bella and more. In many cases, we can’t advertise them on line due to Spanish laws so we’ll introduce you to the banks when you come here. These can be a great source of good value property, often with good finance terms included too.
That ends our brief report of buying a golf property in Spain.
If I was you, and you are serious about buying a Spanish property, I’d check out these five properties:
Next thing I’d do is contact Claire to arrange your inspection trip to Spain, go onto www.ryanair.com to get yourself a flight over and begin to start living your dreams in Spain.