What to think about when buying a property in Tenerife

OOooh look, a villa with a private pool.

OK, OK … I get it and I don’t want to rain on your parade but what you really want to buy in Tenerife, and what is the more sensible option, could very well be two different things.

It’s often said of some holiday makers, when they come to Tenerife, that they leave their brain at their home airport … sometimes thinking that it’s OK to leave their bag or mobile phone on a restaurant table unattended while they nip to the loo … you probably wouldn’t do that in your own country, so it’s not wise to do it here.

The same could be said for some Tenerife property buyers … not necessarily leaving their brain at home but maybe not thinking things through the same way as they would if buying a property back in their home country.

Clearly, when you’re buying a holiday or more permanent home in Tenerife, things are different from home.

There’s a lot of excitement that’s built up over the time that you’ve been planning this … but my advice is to have a chat with a good agent, one that knows the towns and areas, the different complexes along with the negatives and positives of them as well. You need someone who’s going to be honest and upfront with you about things, not just after a quick sale. This approach could save you time and potentially money in the long run.

When you’re looking for a property in Tenerife, the chances are you’ve got your ideal place in the sun in mind … it’s what you’ve been dreaming of for years, you’ve been planning this for the last 12 months and now’s the time you’re actually going to be able to go for it.

It’s got to have three bedrooms for all the visitors that are going to be coming over, it’s got to have a private pool, it must have a lovely sea view and be close to shops and bars. Oh and a couple of minutes’ stroll to the beach.

If you’re buying something to stay in on a longer basis, for example you want to stay for six months of the year, the property that you buy will be a very different animal to the property that’s being bought for your holidays and your friends and family to use throughout the year.

Obviously each different aspect that you’re hoping for from the property you’re going to be buying will have its positives and negatives, so I thought it might be a good idea to run through some of the requests that I’ve seen over the years on some of my buyers’ shopping lists. 

A private swimming pool.

If you’re buying a house or villa for yourselves to live in for a longer period of time, then a pool seems like a good option, and it is, but again, you’ve just got to consider the running costs … this is something that some people don’t think about ahead of time.

You’ll have the weekly maintenance and cleaning … although some of that can be done by yourself if you’re going to be here for a longer period, using a pool company and maybe having them look after your garden as well while you’re away, could be an extra expense of about 200€ per month, probably 100€ if it’s just the pool and if the pool starts losing water, then that cost is all down to you as well. I don’t want to put you off having your own pool, but I just want to bring these points to your attention.

If you’re buying a property for your holidays and having friends and family over, then you’ll definitely need to think about a gardener/pool company and the extra costs that go with that, because if you’re not going to be in the property all the time, you’ll want to have the pool looked after on a regular basis as well as prepared for when your guests want to use it.

Now, on the other hand, if you’re buying an apartment that you’re thinking about renting or at the very least allowing your friends and family to use while you’re not there, you’ll almost certainly need a pool, but this is a bit different because it’ll be a community pool.

Pool charges will be covered in your community fees in this case, so it’s not all going to be on your shoulders. 

Close to the beach.

OK, you want to be within walking distance of the beach, much like many people and of course it’s great, but this certainly means one thing … price.

The closer you are to the beach, the more expensive properties are when you’re buying them.

Of course, they’ll also be more desirable when you’re selling, more expensive than their counterparts further away from the beach, but you’ll need to consider the initial outlay – does it fit within your budget?

The next point about buying close to the beach depends upon where you’re buying.

If you’re looking at something in Los Cristianos or Las Americas, you’ll generally find that properties built close to the beaches are smaller. When they were building the front-line properties way-back-when, they were really only thinking about cramming in as many apartments as possible in the permitted amount of building area, or villas in the smaller plots of land that were allotted at the time, so you might be surprised at the size of some of these properties close to the seafront.

Close to shops and bars.

Yes, shops are handy to have but one thing that bars can bring … not all, that’s fair to say, but they can generate a certain amount of noise.

Agreed, not all of them have karaoke until 2 in the morning and not all bars are rowdy dens of iniquity but again, it’s something that needs to be thought about.

If you’re going to be there holidays only, it might not affect you, in fact it might be something that you’ll want to be close to for a couple of weeks and again, if you’re allowing friends and family over or renting it, it’s probably going to be essential, but if you’re going to be in the property for six months or more at a time, then it might just get on your wick a bit. 

Number of Bedrooms.

You wouldn’t believe the amount of people who have said to me that they initially wanted a two bedroom property and bought a one bedroom or they bought a two bedroom when they started out looking for a three bedroom property.

When people are initially thinking about buying a property in Tenerife, many are thinking about the friends and family they imagine will be coming over as well.

Oh, they’ll come over but maybe not as often as you might imagine, so I frequently suggest that you think about yourselves when buying and not necessarily what you think others will do, if they come over, don’t worry, a lot of people will make do and fit in where they can.

The thing is that the extra cost for buying a property with an extra bedroom could be the difference between buying a totally refurbished one bedroom property and a two bedroom property that needs total refurbishment.

Final thoughts.

In summary, buying a property in Tenerife is a great idea. Every year thousands of people buy here and those that carry out some research beforehand will have no regrets about doing so.

If it’s planned out well beforehand and provided you use an agency you can trust and who understands your needs and requirements, then you’ll pretty much be on the right track.

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