Tel: +44 (0) 330 124 1230  Offices in Leeds, Belfast and Spain

Helping People With Foreign Property Debt & Negative Equity.


Posts Tagged ‘Alpha Bank’

Behind on Community Fees & IBI Taxes?

Community fees and IBI taxes can be unexpected extra costs for property owners in Spain. They become a more serious issue when you are struggling to stay up to date with these payments or if you have to choose between paying these or your mortgage.

Community fees are owed to Community Presidents in Spain. These Presidents are charged with ensuring the community in which you have purchased is visibly up to scratch – for example, the maintenance of common areas, swimming pool cleaning and general upkeep of grounds.

IBI taxes are paid to the local authority and are used to pay for local services and infrastructure such as roads, rubbish collection, street lighting and general maintenance.

What Happens if I Can’t Pay?

If you can’t pay community fees the community president will contact you to request payment as soon as possible. If you can’t pay, the community issues a court demand for payment. In extreme cases, the community of owners can request the sale of the property to receive payment for outstanding debts.

It is important for borrowers to keep up to date with these fees as debt collection agencies can be hired to chase you in the UK and Ireland

If you don’t pay IBI taxes you will be charged a penalty fee. This can be between 5% and 20% of the total owed. Ultimately failure to pay I.B.I on a property could result in the loss of the property.

Mortgage Arrears

If you are struggling with community fees and IBI taxes, you may also be falling behind on your mortgage payments. EU Property Solutions assist people daily who have significant mortgage arrears and missed community fee payments. Many borrowers who purchased properties in Spain were not aware of costs such as Community Fees and IBI taxes. These additional costs and Mortgage Debt in Spain can result in significant stress.

Missed payments are added to the balance along with penalties and interest. Furthermore, you risk legal action and ultimately you are putting your home assets and income at risk if you do not act.

What are your options?

If you cannot maintain payments, then swift action is needed. If you act quickly through an intermediary, such as EU Property Solutions, then the matter can be brought under control and an amicable and desirable outcome achieved.

In most Spanish settlements we can achieve:

  • The surrender of the property to the Bank and a complete debt write off.
  • We can even negotiate Community Fees arrears and IBI tax arrears into the settlement.

Visit our YouTube channel, we publish videos on a weekly basis. This week’s video sees our client, Sue Geraghty discuss the issues she was facing before appointing our services. CLICK HERE TO WATCH.

If you are struggling with any repayments on your Spanish Property call EU Property Solutions on 0330 124 1230 for a free case review.

Title Deeds In Cyprus: Can I Sell Without Title Deeds?

There are more than a few issues with the way property development and sales are handled in Cyprus. This was most prominent in the lead up to and aftermath of 2008. One of the biggest issues has been the fiasco surrounding Title Deeds for Cypriot holiday properties or should we say – the lack of…

So, what are the issues with Title Deeds in Cyprus? Read on to find out more.

What are Title Deeds and why do you need them?

Officially known as a “Certificate of Registration of Immovable Property” this is an official document that shows property ownership. It also contains details about its location, size and more.

They are particularly important when it comes to the sale of property, as they are needed to transfer ownership to any buyer.

When the problems arise…

In Cyprus, the developer, central government departments, and local government/councils are all involved in the process of issuing Title Deeds. Many developers did not correctly divide up the plots of land when they were building apartment developments. Therefore, they could not provide individual separate Title Deeds for purchasers.

If you were not issued Title Deeds, it can be an incredibly frustrating process, especially if you’re trying to find information regarding your property

Selling without Title Deeds

A lack of Title Deeds in Cyprus is not a major issue if you are happy to keep your property. The real problems arise if you’re trying to sell or if you’re property is in negative equity and you want to get rid.

Without Title Deeds, you will need to find a cash buyer to purchase your property. This makes a sale much more difficult and means you may have to sell for a lower price. This is not ideal if your property is already low in value.

There can be any number of issues if the property is in negative equity, has an interest-only mortgage or has Swiss Franc currency issues. If you fall into one of these categories, you could be ‘trapped’, unable to sell and unable to keep paying for your property.

Title deeds in cyprus

The advertisement of specific “Properties With Deeds” shows just how much of an issue Title Deeds are in Cyprus.

Can you obtain Title Deeds?

If you have dealt with the Cypriot government or local councils you will be familiar with the frustration and red tape involved. As a result, many people will not be able to secure Title Deeds, especially for properties purchased pre-2008. In fact, there are still over 100,000 people in Cyprus are still without deeds.

Our team has to deal with the fact that many developers have now ceased to trade and are not contactable. This means the likelihood of ever obtaining complete Title Deeds is poor at best.

How can we help?

EU Property Solutions can help clients without Title Deeds in Cyprus. We have assisted with Swiss Franc issues, Negative Equity and interest-only mortgages.

EU Property Solutions and our Cypriot legal team understand how lenders work and their processes to resolve these property issues and settle mortgage debts. We aim to avoid sales procedures and assist borrowers with alleviating their Cypriot property debt burdens.

If you own a property in Cyprus and you’re experiencing any of the issues discussed above, call EU Property Solutions now on 0044 330 124 1230 to speak to one of our specialists.

Below is a settlement that EU Property Solution recently achieved for a client who thought they would never escape their nightmare because they couldn’t get their Title Deeds.

  • A couple approached EU Property Solutions after struggling for years with their holiday home in Mazatos, Larnaca.
  • They owned a 3-bedroom Townhouse, with no Title Deeds.
  • Their outstanding mortgage at the time of our appointment was SwFr399,000 equating to £313,000 (Sterling).
  • The property was worth €70,000.
  • EU Property Solutions negotiated the successful settlement of the mortgage account.
  • Including our fees and settlement with their developer, the clients saved over £200,000 and most importantly protected their UK assets.

Not convinced? We have UK clients who purchased in Cyprus who are willing to speak to you regarding their experience with EU Property Solutions. Call us today to arrange a chat.

Did you purchase in Polaris World or Costa Blanca Golf Resort?

Costa Blanca has long been a popular hotspot for many people wanting to buy their dream holiday home. Over the years many have followed their dream purchasing either investment properties or holiday homes for retirement futures.

During the Spanish property boom pre-2008, many people purchased properties in this region. Our focus this week has turned to the notorious Polaris World Golf Resorts. 

They were once Europe’s most ambitious holiday home developers and consisted of numerous large-scale projects. These resorts were widely advertised on TV in the UK by legendary golfer Jack Nicklaus (the designer). This was to entice investors looking for a better life in the sun.

During this period, properties sold at highly inflated prices. Some apartments going for €200,000 (£160,000). Thousands of foreign investors flocked to purchase at these resorts. However, when the financial crisis hit in 2008, the prices of these apartments declined rapidly.

Despite the slump in the property market, Polaris World continued to build and ignored the warning signs.

By 2010, they were forced to relinquish most of their assets. This included the golf courses and unsold properties, to the lender. These once-popular resorts are now best described as ghost villages.

In 2018 some apartments are struggling to sell for €60,000. This is leaving many in Negative Equity with unaffordable mortgage payments to meet.

  • Do you own a property in Costa Blanca?
  • Do you know someone going through a similar situation?
  • Are you struggling to pay your mortgage?
  • Are you having trouble selling your property due to Negative Equity?

There are solutions, do not delay and contact us today. 

EU Property Solutions specialist team can offer tailored advice and solutions to end your nightmare forever.

Our legal team in Spain works effectively with borrowers to offload the negative asset and secure a significant debt write-down.

This often saves hundreds of thousands of euros for our clients. We have a dedicated team that will keep you informed every step of the way. 

Other well-known golf resorts in Costa Blanca such as:

  • Roda Golf
  • United Golf
  • Peraleja Golf
  • Corvera Golf & Country Club

Have now found themselves in the same predicament and therefore are essentially mortgage prisoners with nowhere to turn.

Our success is proven, EU Property Solutions recently worked with a client who had purchased a holiday home in Peraleja Golf, Murcia, Spain. Due to the property crash, our client’s property value plummeted from €300,000 to a forced sale price of €140,000. When the clients approached us, the outstanding mortgage was €257,000.

As the clients were pensioners, they were unable to maintain the high mortgage repayments.

The property had been placed on the market for 5 months at €200,000. It had generated zero interest due to the development itself falling into a state of disrepair and the linked golf course closing indefinitely.

To make matters worse, the couple owned a mortgage-free property in the UK with significant equity. Furthermore, they also owned other assets including ISAs and bonds. Understandably, they were worried about the repercussions of this problem property on their assets in the UK.

After providing specialist assistance, we negotiated the voluntary surrender of the property along with a complete debt write-off (Only fees payable in this instance were the consultancy fees of EU Property Solutions.)

So, this was an excellent result and as such has allowed the couple to move forward with their lives and enjoy their retirements.

If you would like to ask us a question relating to your foreign property issue, click HERE

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CYPRUS AND SWISS FRANC MORTGAGE ISSUES

EU Property Solutions receive numerous enquiries from borrowers who purchased properties in Cyprus pre-2008 and were offered Swiss Franc Loans.  These mortgages were sold on the basis that the Swiss Franc was a stable currency. Unfortunately for mortgage holders, the Swiss Franc has been a very strong currency against the £ and the €.

Bizarrely pre-2008 Cyprus had the Cypriot Pound as their currency with the Euro then taking its place. At no point has the Swiss Franc ever been used other than for property purchases. Even more amazingly, Switzerland is not even an EU Country. Without doubt, these mortgages were mis-sold* and at best were deemed to be loose lending by the Cypriot Banks

Following the global financial crisis of 2008, Swiss Franc Loan balances grew due to the Swiss Franc appreciating against the Euro. Added to that there was a property crash worldwide and property prices in Cyprus plummeted. This created Negative Equity and left significant shortfalls for borrowers.

Add to this the issue of a lack of title deeds available and Land Registry issues for purchases in Cyprus, then you have a ‘heady mix’ of issues to overcome. This ‘heady mix’ manifests itself in sometimes huge Negative Equity positions.

Help is however at hand and settlements can be reached by us at EU Property Solutions ….. through our extensive knowledge, negotiating skills and together with our local legal teams, full technical understanding of all cases.

EU Property Solutions were appointed to assist a couple who purchased a holiday home in Paphos and their financial exposure position and our work saw:

  • A mortgage balance was SwFr414,000 which at the time of purchase equated to £182,000,
  • This ‘ballooned’ to £330,000 due to the currency fluctuation referred to above.
  • The property value was only £150,000.

EU Property Solutions negotiated the sale of the property with the lender and a lump sum payment of £35,000 to close the mortgage account. Savings of c£145,000 achieved.

Furthermore, Cyprus is not the only country we have seen the use of Swiss Franc Mortgages. We have seen cases in Poland and Hungary with mortgages issued in Swiss Franc Mortgages.

If you are losing your Swiss Franc Mortgage battle and wish to discuss your options, please call EU Property Solutions today on +44 (0)330 124 1230.

Spanish Property Issues

Are you in Negative Equity and do not understand the meaning?

Sort out your Spanish property issues today! In simple terms; Negative Equity occurs when the current loan or mortgage balance secured on a property is higher than the current market value of the property. Subsequently, some borrowers refer to them as Negative Mortgages.

For example, if a borrower’s current mortgage balance is €150,000; but a recent comparable property may have sold for €100,000 (before selling costs of c8-10%)…this borrower is in Negative Equity and faces a mortgage shortfall of €50,000+.

Such Spanish property issues/shortfalls are due and payable in full as and when the property is sold or disposed of.

EU Property Solutions have had contact with and helped many hundreds of people who purchased in Spain and across Europe at the height of the crazily inflated market, pre-2008.

These couples and individuals took out huge mortgages which were too readily available. These scenarios in turn later left the majority of mortgage holders in some form of financial difficulty. Leaving them exposed to an asset with falling value.

Many who still own a property in Negative Equity feel trapped. They are unable to move on, being dubbed ‘mortgage prisoners’ or ‘Stuck in the Sun’.

Furthermore, EU Property Solutions are experts in Spanish Mortgage Law; assisting borrowers who still suffer from a Negative Equity loan.  We and our hand-picked legal teams work with all lenders across Spain. We can tailor our services based on your circumstances and lender.

A recent example saw us settle a Negative Equity position on a proposed sale of c€120,000 for £25,000 including costs. Genuine telephone testimonials are available to support our work.

Borrowers often bury their head in the sand. They face the very real risk of Spanish mortgage default or Spanish mortgage repossession. These scenarios can be life-changing and will expose your UK Assets and Income.

Dealing with the situation and acting now is key. EU Property Solutions legal team in Spain is ready to assist.

Don’t be a mortgage prisoner – let us find you a way out of this predicament.

Call EU Property Solutions today on 0330 124 1230.