There is currently a huge problem in Spain with ‘Squatters’ unlawfully occupying unused holiday homes.
With Covid-19 travel restrictions ongoing, many holiday homes across Europe have been sitting empty for over a year. This has made the likelihood of Squatters in Spain invading properties x10 times more likely than before the pandemic.
Squatters are moving into these empty properties, making it their home and fitting new locks. They also avail of the properties water, electricity, and bins; leaving property owners left with increased bills and bins which cannot be used.
In a recent interview with Ena Cummings, founder of GoldenKeys Property; squatters were described as “vile, evil beasts” who should be thrown out immediately. Unfortunately, due to Spain’s insufficient legal system, Community Presidents not taking action, Banks being irresponsible and the countries water and electric board turning a blind eye, therefore, this means that property owners are left to deal with these squatters themselves.
In Ena’s community, there are 8 squatters who not only have moved into the development but have displayed public indecency. They have thrown bleach and wine at homes on top of stealing water, electricity, and their bin facilities. Ena expressed that the community wanted an AGM with the community presidents.
“It was arranged in 2019 to get the removal mafia in from Madrid. This was to remove the squatters, to get a loan, and pay it through our community fees (which was agreed.) But our two so-called presidents won’t sign the forms as they don’t want to throw people out on the street.”
The only guaranteed way to get squatters removed from a property is to hire a removal mafia from Madrid. This comes at a fee of €5,000. The other option to protect an empty home is to pay €35 a month for a photographic alarm system. The alarm system will notify the Guardia Civil who can throw them out within 48hrs. Nonetheless, both options add further expense to unused holiday homes in Spain.
Ena is adamant that “Spain needs to change their law, but it’s going to get worse before it gets better.”
If you have an unused property in Europe that you no longer can maintain, this is your time to act before squatters make your home theirs!