Thursday, August 16, 2012

Handing Back the Keys!

Over the last few years we have heard very many British immigrants and holiday home owners utter the words, "I am going to hand the keys in". What they were saying in essence was that they intended to walk away from the debt they owned a Spanish Bank. We found this incredible when we first heard it and so much more so now.

In our experience quiet a lot of people, prior to the current world economic crisis, came to Spain and took on mortgages that where ambitious to say the least. We personally have meet large numbers of our fellow countrymen who had a mortgage in UK and took on another here for a holiday home. Then there are  those who had no income here, often just vague ideas of running a business that would serve fellow Brits. The problem is just how many property management companies and the like were needed. Also how did you compete with those who worked illegally- and incidentally  using an unregistered management company can invalidate your house insurance.
Well given the problems of earning a living here, paying two mortgages  the current crisis you can see that cracks would appear in some peoples dreams. Ask yourself this though, WHAT WERE THEY THINKING.
 We are not being smug just count ourselves lucky we have leaned from our lives and our mistakes. You know what they say if you have never made a mistake you have never made anything. But really would you go to a new country, possibly unable to speak the language, without the were with all to live at least for the first year. Whats more would you take on a second mortgage in the hope that you will let the place for some of the time to pay it and that your job was secure. Secure jobs didn't they die out in 1969? 
Following on from the stories of people losing there homes, handing back the keys as many have, we have seen endless media stories about "hard done too" Brits. Some people it seems think its OK to up and walk away from their debt because it is in another country. But think about this for a moment Banks in Spain have 155.84bn euros of loans at risk of not being repaid. That is 9% of all loans.
Of course we are not saying that's all immigrants walking away for a mortgage debt. However consider the up roar there would be if it was happening in UK., this handing in the keys business and running off home.
We have listened to the argument that the Banks are at fault and of course their easy mortgage policy has been a contributory factor. But did all the people who took 100 and even 110 percent mortgages  do so with a loaded gun at there head, I think not. If large amounts of individuals are aloud to ignore their debt to Spain it will be very unfair indeed.
Spain has 1 in 4 unemployed and By 2010, one in four Spaniards were at risk of poverty
or social exclusion. We would say to all the defaulters if you think you are badly off living back in UK think again. For many life is hard now in Spain and I am not talking about not being able to go out for a meal so often I am talking about not being able to eat.We hope the banks will use the international laws now in place that enable them to pursue these debts across borders.
For all this Spain remains the place we want to call home and a country that we love.Here in Blanca despite the hard times local people remain cheerful, helpful and generous.  Property prices are continuing to fall and we hope attracting people who can afford to live the dream. that people will cut there cloth to match there purse. In our area alone there are many amazing bargains that with a little work will become perfect family or holiday homes. The banks are getting their acts together, the rubbish agents whose advice was always to buy big or buy two, we know we met them, have all but gone. The established local companies continue to match, people with houses that suit not only the buyers taste but also their pockets.

What we try to do is on a daily basis is rejoice is the good things whilst hoping for a change for the better,recognizing that no one country is to blame and that individuals contribute to any problem you care to mention, but, we can and should seek solutions that are within our power.

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