As of the beginning of this summer (1 July 2011), presidents of communities can get a mortgage for their community. Up until now the law required that any mortgage that was taken out by a community required the signature of all the owners.
The global trend in property as towns grow, has turned many villas or individual houses into apartment blocks of all sizes; and many farming lands are converted into larger urbanizations housing private villas. Many of these apartment blocks are no more than 4 to 10 owners and vary from 2 to 5 floors. In Spain in many cases all the owners agree with their shares of the cleaning and maintenance and as such it is not always necessary to register the entity as a “Community of Property Owners” (Comunidad de Propietarios). However it is always advisable to setup a Comunidad de Propietarios so as to provide a better managed and recorded history of the property and allow future owners to have a better understanding of how the community has developed in the past and provide better integration into their new neighbourhood.
As promised in the last blogs, I will share with you a number of things we have implemented for reducing our community fees. But before we do that let’s just remind ourselves of something interesting. I would think that by now almost all of us are aware of the energy saving light bulbs. The cost of these bulbs vary and at times are as high as 10x a standard tungsten light bulb. What I am trying to say is that in order to save electricity you have to spend at times a considerable sum replacing the tungsten light bulbs. Same applies to solar panels, salt water purification for swimming pool and so on.
The VAT was increased on the first of July. This has already affected all your bills from day to day shopping to petrol, gas and electricity. So how does this affect your income / expenses?
We are essentially trying to help owners who are in the dark about what’s going on in their community. Charles Mackenzie-Hill local real estate agent and landlord wrote to me some month’s ago as our product (OCM) resonated with him. Mainly, because as in the service industry is forever trying to unravel local information for tenants or owners that they are trying to relocate.
If you are the president of your community you know how difficult it is to keep everyone happy and all questions answered. Many communities have already got a website, but none are multilingual or allow as much functionality as OCM a system that is designed specifically for communities, the president, the owners and the administrator.
The Urbytus Network website is an online community site for users to discuss their communities/urbanisations and find usefull information regarding property and communities in spain.