Are you constantly stressed out or worried about general first world problems on the Costa del Sol? Do you often lose sleep over that electric bill that makes absolutely no sense? Or does your mind reel in anger as you wait in queue for the Spanish clerk to get off the phone? Or how about finally making it to your important appointment at 1:45pm only to find they decided to close early for siesta?
Guess what - you're doing it wrong.
These are the most common troubles faced by expats in Spain; unfortunately many are un-aware, by no fault of their own, that they are living in Spain the WRONG way. In fact, there is a RIGHT way to live in the South of Spain, and live happily as well. KMS Property Solutions has been around a long time, and all the staff call Costa del Sol home. Putting together this helpful guide on how to live in Spain the right way, just made sense.
Considering now is the time to buy property on Costa del Sol, and the property market has made a huge come back. Many are once again considering moving to Malaga province. The South of course is still one of the best locations to up-root your life to. Beautiful panoramic views, the Mediterranean sea, white sandy beaches and an incredible property investment opportunity. Not to mention a low cost of living and over 320 days of sunshine a year.
Stop Comparing Spain to Home
In case you didn't notice, you're in a completely different country, so comparing or constantly using the mantra "Well it's not like that in England", will get you nowhere fast. Of course it's not like England or the UK in general; at the end of the day you are surrounded by a completely different way of thinking. It's a culture all of its own, and a lifestyle you should be adopting.
Mañana, Mañana, and Mañana
For the Spanish, everything, and we mean EVERYTHING can wait until tomorrow. By now you know this, and by now you should be over it. We're talking about an eon of culture here or what seems like a lifetime. So, go with the flow, why fight what you can't change? There's no point in stressing out, and losing your cool. Besides, you want to live longer don't you?
Take the Bureaucratic System Head on
We get it, of course we do. You just live here, but can you imagine actually owning an office here? It's not something we'll get into today, but there is a way to take that red tape and tame it. You need to be assertive , and if you have a language barrier, hire a translator to be assertive for you. During our long stay on the Costa del Sol, we've learned you not only have to be assertive, but also respectful and very open minded. Learning to accept the fact that nothing happens over night in Spain is the first step to happiness here.
Make the Effort
We can't stress enough how it important it is that you learn the language or at least give it the old college try. Refusing to assimilate abroad doesn't win you any popularity contests amongst the locals, and the Spanish are no exception. Even though the Costa del Sol is full of expats with many areas dedicated to English speaking residents, don't forget that you do need to get out and shop or work. Besides, the Spanish appreciate it when you're at least trying, and they will respect you more for it.
Embrace the National Holiday's and Feria's, Don't Complain about Them
In case you are newly arrived and you don't know, the Spanish including each city, village or town across this wonderful country take their holidays and ferias seriously. Sit back and relax a bit because when it comes to National holidays, bank holidays and local fiestas, everything is closed. If they're not closed, then they will be...early. Also, cross off the month of August now for any sort of paperwork; it's not going to happen. August is one of the hottest months in the South of Spain, and generally everything of importance tends to shut down.
Just accept that it's different and enjoy
You have to admit it - why did you move here besides the sunshine? It's the way of life, and you know it! The lifestyle is so laid back in Spain that for a Brit it can be a huge shock to the system. The best approach to calming down and living stress free is to have a great sense of humour here. There is a very good reason why the Spanish live so long, and that's because things just roll easily off their back. They don't fight what can't be changed, and they don't mind putting things off until tomorrow.
The long queues, red tape longer than a football field, siesta's and fiesta's are just a way of life here. The Spanish are fun loving and family oriented people, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. We have to wonder why anyone would want to fight this way of life - it boggles the mind really.
Best place to retire, best place to buy a second holiday home, best holiday destination in Europe, and of course best choice destination amongst honeymooners. These are all phrases that correctly describe Spain. But, what many don't know, is why Spain, particularly Andalusia in the South is one of the best places to live. So, let's just go through a quick reminder:
1. You will live longer
2. It will broaden your horizons
3. Learning a second language prevents memory loss in old age
4. The cost of living is low
5. The cost of food is low
6. You spend the rest of your life on the world famous " Mediterranean diet."
7. Golfing to your heart's content
8. Siesta's starting at 2pm - enough time in between for a swim, drink and tapas
9. Economic recovery has landed - now is the time to move to Spain, and the Costa del Sol
10. You don't have to be a celebrity to own a luxury villa in Marbella.
Take the next step, and consider buying a property in Marbella.
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