SPANISH COMMUNITY FEES & PRESIDENTS

We had great pleasure in sponsoring last weeks Presidents Club Golf Day held at Marbella Club Golf. The two advisors who attended the event said it was a fantastic day which was well received by all attendees. EU Property Solutions would like to thank Urbytus for arranging the day and inviting us to attend and play. Our advisors had productive informal discussions with many who visited on the day and some we met hope to introduce struggling overseas borrowers who we can hopefully assist to eradicate their debt burden.

As the event was the Presidents Club Golf Day we feel it appropriate to discuss what a President does in Spain and the role they play for overseas borrowers.

Nearly everyone who bought a property in Spain or who intends to purchase will automatically become a member of a community. They will be expected to contribute financially to the community in line with their share or “coefficient”. This share is written into the title deeds “Escritura” of the purchased property.

It would seem many who purchased property pre-2008 did not factor in these community fees as a cost which adds a further burden to financing your overseas property. It is your responsibility to be aware of these charges and to pay them ignorance is no excuse and bills are not sent. Unfortunately many borrowers we meet are behind on their community fees or not paying them. Until your name is off the title deeds you are responsible for community fee payments. We are starting to see communities appointing UK based debt collection agents to recover non paid fees.

There are two very good reasons for paying your community charges on time. The first is the moral issue as you are expecting your fellow owners to finance you if you do not pay and in some cases the community will deteriorate as, of course, the cleaners and gardeners won’t work for nothing. The second, and more alarming, reason is that the community now has the ability to (through court action) freeze your bank account and seize the apartment. Of course this is always a last resort and time consuming but the community always wins and the costs are charged to the delinquent owner. The community can also apply penal charges to late payments and owners in debt have no voting rights at a meeting.

The President ensures the smooth running of the community. He or she is responsible for the actions of the community and makes sure that AGM meetings are held and that the community is in agreement with the planned expenditure. Most communities also have an Administrator and this is a legal requirement – typically the Administrator supports the President in their day to day roles but it is the President who has final say on community decisions.

Many who purchased property and have found the investment to be unsustainable will not only have significant mortgage debt but often Community Fee arrears. Should you wish to discuss any form of European Property Debt then please call EU Property Solutions on +44 (0)330 124 1230. We will be happy to arrange a free initial consultation to provide a clear route in alleviating your debt problems.

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