Help me decide?


Dec 28, 2007
Gosh...where do I start?
I am a 36 year old English (Yorkshire) woman with a two year old daughter and have been living in Ibiza for five years. I own my own antique shop which is very nice but, unfortunately, I think I am falling out of love with the island. I am sick of the sight of my shop's street which is usually deserted and very boring anyway. I am not into the fake hippie theme of the island and think I might be out growing the clubbing scene here. Beaches are pretty much the only destination for nature lovers which leaves me, a river, mountain and lake lover, a bit unfulfilled.
I've been reading up about BA for a few days now and think I may have found my dream location....San Telmo. If I sold my shop I could easily buy a town house (for around $150k with money left over), maybe rent out a room or two and earn money buy selling antiques online to UK and US customers. What is the postal system to the UK like, timewise and costwise? Do you know anyone who is doing this at the moment? Are antiques easy and cheap to source? How easy is it to find a lodger and how much can you expect to earn for a room? I'd make it look nice ;)
My main hope would be to have a good social circle which has been lacking in Ibiza as it is very cliquey and, to be honest, full of people rather at odds with me. There is a distinct lack of culture on the island and too many people are the laid back, can't be arsed, 'I am an island' types, particularly the men. I know a lot of Peter Pan types! I have some good friends but I've never felt as though I've found my place.
Are there lots of opportunities to meet expats for friendship and romance of the more grown up variety? The men in Ibiza (and women it seems) do not believe in relationships and, being a good lass, I just can't seem to change my way of thinking to fit in with this mentality. Would a woman like me have a cat in hell's chance alongside the local Latin ladies of attracting a decent mate....probably an expat but not necessarily? Hard to quantify I know but unsubstantiated claims would be welcomed nonetheless;)
Do people have dinner parties in BA? How easy is it to meet expats? I want to meet locals as well but it's a nice relief to have an easy conversation in English. What are the expats like? In Ibiza, the British expat community is mainly made of up drunken drop outs :( British expat BBQs tend to involve not a lot more than standing with the women while the enebriated men circle the drinks table while farting, snorting and eyeing up their next conquest (can). I kid you not.
Also.....swing. Is it all tango or are there any live swing bars? Are there nightclubs which play house music aimed at the 30 something crowd? Is BA a place where everyone is welcome in nightclubs?
If I sorted out residency (would I need to prove I already had an income?) would my daughter be entitled to free schooling and both of us entitled to free healthcare? I could start up the website now by selling items from my shop online and re-direct it or alter it to suit BA.
How confident are you that Argentina will remain a democracy? How much does the state interfer with your lives at the moment? Do you feel you have more personal freedom in BA or less in terms of police road blocks, speed cameras, ID, police presence? I'm law abiding (most of the time!) but I would not want to live in a police state.
This is my blog about my life in Ibiza but don't let on I'm thinking about leaving!
Ok...over to you. Hit me with whatever Agony Aunt and Uncle advice you fancy as long as it doesn't involve telling me to find out eyes are watering I've been reading so much so be nice ;)
You may not like this, but only you can decide. Personally I love this place, but buying property here is a nightmare. You cannot just walk in witrh a briefcase full of money and buy anything that takes your fancy, believe me I have tried.
I am now on my third trip since commiting to buy a new property, so far I have one piece of paper with another due to be sent when I get back to UK and can send more funds.
You need to find people you can trust here, you need a very good relationship with your own bank and mpst of all you need a lot of luck.
Finally this is not Eldorado, I love it here but be real to the facts: dog shit everywhere. lousy pavements (sidewalks), crazy (dangerous) traffic,raging inflation, and beuracracy that will drive you to insanity.
If you can put up with all that, the city is beautiful, the people friendly, the nightlife never ending, and still relatvely cheep (though for how long who knows)
To see my problems buying go to:
I think decisions are always made based on hundreds or thousands of snippets of information so thanks for your bits. I would, I feel, have a distinct advantage in terms of accepting my new lot due to already 'dealing with' the latin/Spanish way of doing things. Ibiza also has a ludicrous amount of red tape wrapped around any official. Why such a basic and laid back place needs so much paperwork faffiness I do not know.
In Ibiza, if the pavement exists, it will be a good one...wide, shiny and clean. Most roads, however, are caminos....dirt tracks.
I'm starting to get feeling that it would be extremely difficult to sell my property and during the between the signed and sealed stages (probably similar to BA) buy one in BA. Is it better to sell up in Ibiza, move to BA and stay in rented accommodation and wait for the money to arrive bit by bit before buying property?
"Hannah" said:
. . . . I would, I feel, have a distinct advantage in terms of accepting my new lot due to already 'dealing with' the latin/Spanish way of doing things. . . .
As a fellow anglophone with some (limited) Spanish and Argentine experience, I'd say your time in the Mediterranean will help less than one might imagine.
. . . . Is it better to sell up in Ibiza, move to BA and stay in rented accommodation and wait for the money to arrive bit by bit before buying property?
That'd be the path I'd follow.
Oh dear where do I start; you simply cannot just send money over here. It must come in through an exchange house, they will only release the money through an escribano to buy property, you must prove provenance and the time you can leave it there is limited.
Or if you send money they will keep 30% without paying interest for a year before they will release it.
You can of course bring in $10000 when you arrive, but on your own with that much cash, you will need a lot of luck.
Speak to someone here who deals with theses things, I can recomend if you drop me a note. Belive me this is NOT Spain.
Off-topic: I've just posted what was intended to be a reply to two short quotations from Hannah's second posting. As others may see above, nothing shows her words as quoted, or in any other way as different from my own, even though I thought I was doing what needed to be done in order to differentiate the two texts.
Would any other poster be so kind as to tell me what I ought to have done?
Tangobob....when I bought my property in Ibiza I sent my pounds to Moneycorp who then changed them into euros and sent them to my Spanish bank account. Would that be permitted and get around the 30% hold?
RWS...did you do something wrong? Maybe Ibiza has taught me to not get so agitated by ridiculous red tape but I now also have a craving for a more real existence. It's not exactly El Dorado here but it's boring enough to make me want a bit of rough and ready.
Hannah, the best advise I can give you is visit Argentina. Buenos Aires City in particular and Argentina in general. And if you can swing it, take your daughter with you, after all she too is moving here right? And leave any rose colored glasses at the Ibiza airport.
Take in the BsAs city you want to adopt before committing to anything life changing. A city like BsAs will change your life and your daughter's. You need to come here with wide eyes, open heart and open mind.
IF you bought a brand new car you would want to take if for a test drive right? Same rule applies here. Come here and ask all the real estate questions that applies and might apply to you. I am sure in Ibiza you have heard of escribania, it is big thing here when buying property. Knowing the language does not begin to cover all the bases, you need to know connections, people who know people - after you get your dream house/condo - you will need to maintain it right? ABL payments, property taxes, plumbing, renovations here and there - fun stuff.
But come and visit first, during this times. Argentina has a new president - come and enjoy everything that is Argentina.
Hi Matty,
Well, if my judgement on home locations is to be equated with my choice of car then I think I may as well toss a coin! I lose a part of it every time I drive on the motorway and my roof framework is held together by silicon. I've never seen cars as top priority ;)
Good news....look at what I found...
There's nothing like that in Ibiza and I don't want to be on my death bed muttering complaints about never getting the chance to learn how to swing dance. I've watched lots of tango videos but I don't think it's my cup of tea. It looks a bit too serious for me and not bouncy enough....their torsos stay still the whole time!
I had an idea today. I could approach my bank to see if they could part-mortgage my shop so that I had the cash to buy an off-plan apartment. I have discovered they are offered at up to 30% discount. Is this correct? Is there some sort of protection for the buyer should the builder go bust or not complete? Many people in the south of Spain lost money due to buying off-plan and the builder either going bust or disappearing with the cash.
If you buy new there a whole new set of problems, that is what I am doing. You cannot just move money here it simply cannot be done, to do it you need an account here, to get an account you need property, to gat property you need an account QED
The only way to buy new is to move money through the builders foriegn account. you should only do this with money you can afford to loose. Caveat emptor.