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Top tips for selling properties in Spain

Research from Idealista, Spain’s largest property portal, showed that in December 2022, 20% of properties listed sold within a week, 35% in a month, 56% in three months and 85% in a year.  

On the Costa del Sol, I’d say the average time for a well-priced property to sell is between three and six months. That’s from when the property goes on the market, to getting an offer and taking a deposit.

However, as you can see from the Idealista report, there’s a large variation on how long things take to sell. As a vendor there are some things you can do to speed things up, but there are also things that are out of your control.


How quickly something sells really comes down to supply and demand. If we get a listing in a popular development, or area, where there aren’t many listings competing with yours, then you know it will go quickly. We’ve recently had a few that have sold in less than a week, because we have a lot of interest in the areas they were in, the property ticked all the boxes and was priced fairly.

You need to time it right if possible, so there aren’t lots of competitor properties on the market at the same time. When that happens you lose control of the price because the buyer can bargain and play one vendor off against another.

Properties that aren’t selling so quickly are often not in a desirable area, so have fewer ideal buyers. It can also be that they are priced too high compared to similar properties in their area, or they aren’t standing up to other properties in their area in terms of finish. At this point you either decide to invest to bring it up to standard, or drop your price to acknowledge that the buyer will have to invest more into the property.

How to price your property correctly

When pricing your property, make sure you do your research on other properties in the area and try not to be greedy. Get a number of agents to price the property and don’t always go for the highest valuation.

Choose the agent that you trust and who seems to understand the market and the area. They are most likely to price it correctly. You can increase the price a little, to allow a bit of room for negotiations, but make sure you’re not out of step with similar properties in your locality because you won’t get anyone in the door.

When to do work

Listen to your agents if they are recommending doing some refurbishment work. Many second homeowners don't want to invest €10,000 to get €50,000 back and speed up the sale process. But as you only have one chance to impress, it really is worth the effort and investment.

You have to see beyond your tastes, to try to make your property appeal to the most potential buyers if you want a chance of a quick sale. For example, we had one vendor with a beautiful villa, but which was painted brown and it was really putting buyers off. We recommended that they paint it a more neutral colour but they refused because they liked brown - despite the fact that I believe that this simple investment alone would increase the value of their property by €100K.

Warning signs that something isn’t right

There is a lot of interest from buyers at the moment. So, if you aren’t getting viewings, then there’s either something wrong with the price, or the marketing of your property. Ask your agent how they are ensuring the right buyers are aware of the property, make sure you have good professional photography and that the property looks good online. If all this is checks out and you’re still not getting viewing requests, we recommend revisiting the price.   

If you’re getting viewings but not offers, then there’s something wrong with the property. This may mean you need to do work, give it a lick of paint, or simply stage it better to give the right impression. We recommend decluttering and depersonalizing the space, making sure all the lights are on and blinds are up to maximise light, cleaning and tidying and ensuring the place smells clean and fresh.

Heat or cool the space to make it feel comfortable, keep pets out of the way and remove yourself from the viewing, leaving your property in the capable hands of your agent. This should give you the best chance of getting an offer. Ask your agent what the feedback was from viewers and try to act on it.


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