We had found the perfect apartment in the center of Alicante, but we had to return home earlier than we had planned – without finalizing a contract. But we had to have a finalized contract in hand in order to apply for our visas, and that appointment was fast approaching.
As planned, we moved into my mother-in-law’s house so we could prep it for sale. NOT as planned, there was no internet. It’s very hard to conduct business internationally without internet.
Not to mention that it took two agents in Alicante to conduct said business. Miguel, the rental agent, spoke no English, not even “apartment English.” Carlos was the business rental agent at the estate office. He spoke excellent English – turns out that his parents met at The University of Texas (small world). They emigrated from Venezuela to Spain before he was born. Carlos was essential to our finding and renting the apartment.
Also, not to mention, a 7-hour time difference that made things even more difficult.
Many e-mails back and forth with follow-up phone calls. The final conversation: I had the contract (in Spanish) called up on my phone, while we had Miguel and Carlos on speaker on Todd’s phone. Carlos walked us through a translation as I skimmed the Spanish text.
Then we had to return to our former neighbor’s house to print out the contract, initial all pages and photos (Spanish rental contracts include pictures of the property to confirm the condition), scan and return the contract.
We then had to transfer funds. First month and last month rents as deposit, plus two months because we’re not Spanish. So, by the end of July, we had an apartment paid for through November – an apartment we wouldn’t be in until October.