So I've been in Mallorca for almost two months now. I spend most of my days with a couple of hours of remote work and a couple of hours of driving around the island looking at properties on sale. The whole property business is very new to me and quite overwhelming. So far I've been looking at over 20 properties. I've been asked how I choose which properties are worth taking a look at and how I evaluate the properties I've seen. This is my approach:
I made a list with all the criteria I'm looking for. Most properties are online, I've used the website idealista most frequently, because it is very easy to save your favorites and choose your favorite area on the map.
At the beginning I've been looking at all sorts of properties just to get a feeling for what is out there and how the prices come about. From an empty field with a little shed for 30'000 euros to a hotel complex for 1.2 million, I've seen it all. I've learned a lot and have adapted the criteria for the search.
On an excel sheet I list all the properties I've been looking at, note their exact location, the real estate agent, a nick name for me to remember and a brief summary of my first impression.
The most important criterion is my gut feeling. This might sound stupid to some of you, but I've seen houses that had a sad or spooky energy. Even if the property seems perfect on paper, I definitely don't want to buy a house, where I have a bad feeling from the start.
I've had a meeting with an architect, who can help me to evaluate properties and can check if it is indeed possible to build or develop the way I want it to.
Plot of min. 14200 m² (minimum size that allows for construction)
Decent soil quality, existing trees preferred
Weld or access to water
House of min. 100 m² to restore but with a roof on!
Budget: max. 300'000 euros (the cheaper the better)
Region: Between Artà and Llucmajor, within 30 minutes to the sea by bike.
Good gut feeling
A nice town closeby (like Artà, Son Macià, Cas Concos, Santanyì Ses Salines or Llucmajor)
Let me take you on a little real estate tour!
I'll take you to my top 5 properties so far...
2021/01/03: "sineu sa plaza"
This was the first property I've been looking at in 2021. It's a very beautiful property close to Sineu, 40'000 m² of land with an old barn on it. You have a great view over the countryside and would be allowed to build a new house of 300m². And the price of 260`000 is quite a bargain! Downsides: Sineu is really far away from the sea (being on an island) and the access road is pretty difficult thinking of lorries going up there to build a house.
2021/01/11: "porto cristo"
I had a very good feeling walking up to that gutted old building. The location (close to porto cristo) is beautiful and quiet. Generous plot of 21'000 m², there is a new roof on it and it has a well. The price (for a building in this condition) is too high for my budget: 349`000 euros. Also, the whole plot seems to be on a solid piece of rock. So planting stuff would be very difficult if not impossible.
2021/01/26: "Ca n'estirat"
This was the first property where I could really see my vision come to life. It's a huge 39'000m² plot on a small hill close to Son Macià. It's very secluded with a great view and comes with a little forest! There are three ruins on the property, one has barely a roof on it, the other two have already been completely taken over by nature. I requested my architect to find out, which of the buildings I would be allowed to restore. But while I was waiting for her answer, I realized, that this undertaking was to big for me. Adding to the 325'000 euros for the property, I would be spending years and lots of money to restore the ruins. I recognized that a big house (or three houses) also means more work and more costs not only in the beginning, but also for maintenance.
2021/02/03: "Molino Campos"
This property is offered for 585'000 euros, so way over my budget. But it just looked nearly perfect and it's habitable as it is, meaning not much more to invest. So I went to take a look. The buildings are generous and come with a big field I could cultivate. The old wind mill tank has been turned into a pool. It is very close to the town Campos. Downsides: It is also very close to a frequently used street. Unfortunately, the quality of the buildings is poor and a restoration is required soon. For a real estate of that size (620m²) this means quite a big sum of money.
This was the 13th property I've visited this year and it is my favorite so far. I'm usually not superstitious, but there have been some other signs than just being the lucky 13. It's a small house on a plot that just has the required 14200m² I would need to add to it (mallorcan building regulations). The house is very simple, but in a good condition, meaning there is a roof, a well and even access to electricity. So I could basically move in and live like the farmers did a hundred years ago until I have the funds and papers to rebuild the house. It used to be an almond orchard and many of the trees are still alive. That's a great start for a food forest. The spirit of the house is very calm and friendly, maybe you can tell by the way that I'm writing, that I might have fallen in love with this property. So I asked my architect to check the papers. There is a vagueness about the exact plot size, and it is very important to make sure I would be able to enlarge the existing building and to get a license to live there. She will check with the town house next week, so let's keep our fingers crossed!