One of the last comments on my post “How to start a new life in Spain before it’s too late” particularly caught my eye:
“What a ridiculous and naive take on moving to a new country??!!
In the first instance Spain is in fact one of the worst countries for relocating due to the relentless red tape and beaurocracy that is involved in purchasing property. It is also notorious for many a dodgy deal happening with unscrupulous sellers (apparently the ex-pat Brit is often the culprit) selling properties with all manner of debts attached to them which automatically become your problem. Furthermore, you’ll never actually own the land that your home sits on and therefore can be moved on at any point in the future should the Spanish government decide they want to build a through road right across your land (as with friend’s of my parents).
Work is hard to come by and badly paid. As for teaching, I myself am a qualified English Language Instructor and Spain is one of the lowest paid countries to secure well payed employment (in comparison to living) and it’s not uncommon for people to be paid the same rate whilst working in a bar (again crap pay).
I have been fortunate enough to have travelled extensively and to have lived in many different countries and I have no hesitation is saying that Spain is top of my list for worst places to live (unless of course you’re happy to live in an ex-pat ‘Eldorado’ community). Whilst I do have many Spanish friends, my own personal experience of the Spanish themselves was that they are an unfriendly, unhelpful hostile bunch who do little or nothing to make the tranistion less painful. I had even arrived with a job, enrolled for refresher language classes and communicated soley in Spanish.
Yes, people do move there in there droves but many come back to British shores with only the shirts on their back due to rushed, hurried decision making and lack of a comprehensive plan.
I almost sold up before my last trip there having had many an enjoyable holiday and I’m so glad that I held on to my investment across here instead. As far as Spain is concerned the days of an easy buck in the sun are well and truly over!!”
Evidently I strongly disagree with most of this statement – the government only ‘grabs’ people’s land in Valencia, for example – and I replied to the comment in full over at the original post. But this certainly got me thinking. I am aware that I am always more than encouraging to anyone that wishes to move to Spain, because frankly it has worked out very well for me, and many of my ex-pat friends here, but that can make this website a little one-sided. So I would really like to hear from anyone else that has had similar experiences to the commenter in question, or just simply didn’t find Spain that great. Leave a comment below or email me if you want to tell your story.