A house or apartment swap is a feasible alternative to just buying a property, and could be worth considering if you want to move to Spain; there is always someone hoping to repatriate. As unconventional as it might be, numerous websites offer this service. Anyone who cannot afford to buy a new home until theirs is sold, could find this a convenient way to move, with help from someone else willing to trade their property. It is of course vital to do some thorough research, before making a successful trade.
Visit some of the sites that offer house swapping services. Many of them are designed in a relatively simple way with separate boxes asking you what kind of house you are looking for and what you are selling.
Fill in the information at the house swapping site of your choice: Most ask you what property type you are selling, and for what type you are looking looking to trade. Indicate whether a detached or terraced house, flat, or a timeshare and show how many bedrooms and bathrooms you have in the house. Provide the country, city and postcode of your home’s location, and an estimate of what your home is worth. Enter the same information for the type of house you are interested in, and the price range desired. Create a user name and password, and provide your email address in a separate box. Enter this and you are officially signed up at your chosen house swapping site.
Check through property listings that the house swapping site sends you after signing up. Click on one that interests you and you will generally be taken to a listings page. There you will be asked to enter more extensive information about the type of house you are looking for and info about your own home you want to trade.
Look over property matches. When you do find a property, most house swapping sites expect you to pay a fee, after which your property is available for viewing on their site, for locations of your choosing. They also advertise your property info on prominent national real estate websites.
Wait for a personal email from an interested party, about your home: All house swapping sites save your email address, so you will always be contacted when someone is interested in trading their home for yours.
You can of course also advertise on English speaking property sites for Spain, where you may find expats wabting to return home, or even Spanish people wanting to move to the UK.
Trading a Home
Hire an estate agent if you don’t want to do the trade process yourself, however if you have bought a house before on your own, the procedure shouldn’t be too complicated.
Seek out a lender and indicate that you are doing a trade. Meet with the people with whom you are trading and create a written contract, and send in the deposits for taxes and insurance to the lender, and take contracts to a mortgage loan officer.
Work with the person with whom you’re trading, to schedule inspections of each home for loan approval. Once house inspections are completed, the loan can be approved. Sign all documents for loans and your deeds from the title company. Ensure you and the person with whom you are trading use the same title company, as this helps the house swap go much faster and without complications.
Look at house swapping in the same way as buying a house. The only difference is the written contract between the two parties needs to be carefully written, so each side is protected from a shady deal.
If you are in the UK or elsewhere in the EU, there shouldn’t be any further complications to swapping with someone in Spain. However those outside the EU should seek further advice.