Expert tips for finding the ideal home

“Location, location, location.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
15 May 2024 Wednesday 10:27
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Expert tips for finding the ideal home

“Location, location, location.” It is the currency that all real estate agents agree on. Because location is the key when choosing a home to live in, but also to invest in.

70% of Estrella Serrano's clients, CEO of Living, are national, it is her market niche, although she attends real estate conferences in the United States every year. The streets in Barcelona that are most in demand are Reina Victoria, Pérez Cabrero, José Beltrán, Modolell, Freixa, in general the surroundings of Turó Park. "At Living we are specialized in luxury homes or homes that have something special, with unique characteristics, it could be a penthouse with views of Turó Park, a loft in Gràcia or an industrial loft, we look for the jewel of each area." For her, the true gem is a house that “has many hours of light but without direct sun, which is a problem because it is annoying and burns the furniture.”

He points out that one of the big trends is sustainability, well-renovated houses, with durable and sustainable materials, ventilated facades, which incorporate home automation technologies, well-thought-out lighting and low-consumption boilers. In addition to exclusivity, their clients look for “security, privacy, outdoor spaces to enjoy with family and friends, clear and guaranteed views (that they are not going to build a building that deprives them of them), also good gyms, and international schools and common areas where to socialize if you are expats. And since they usually have several vehicles, they look for homes with several parking spaces.”

One of the most common mistakes, explains Serrano, is allowing ourselves to be impressed or disappointed by the decoration of the property. “You have to try to visualize the box that is the home without that decoration since it is something superfluous and easily repairable. We can change the color of the walls, but not the location or orientation."

Serrano recalls some cases of “property collectors, buyers who have an apartment in Manhattan, London, Paris, Dubai or Tel Aviv and are now looking to complete the bouquet in Barcelona or Madrid.” But he also talks about the emotional connection, “many writers, painters, designers... seek inspiration in their workplace, which is also their home, and that connection occurs when entering the home, it is like magic, when ownership and buyer connect.” She felt it with "a modernist mansion on Muntaner street, a penthouse on Passeig de Gràcia that stole my sleep and an impressive house by the fabulous architect Joaquín Torres." And she highlights that the house in Sant Just Desvern in which we photographed her for this report “would be a very good candidate for me; just five minutes from Barcelona but with a green lung around it, views of the equestrian center and a lot of forest. Large spaces with natural light, swimming pool, terraces, garden and minutes from schools. like the German school, the Miranda. A perfect cocktail.”

Armando Lasauca, CEO of Aproperties, emphasizes this idea of ​​connection with the property: “Clients who buy to live tend to make more emotional decisions. The financial aspect is important, but if they fall in love with the property, they are willing to make sacrifices. “Investors are more concerned about profitability.” But also in this group there are different approaches: “Some seek immediate profitability, while others see the property as a kind of trophy, a long-term investment.” His company specializes in high or very high segment properties in Barcelona, ​​Madrid, Valencia and Palma.

And continuing with the emotionality, empty properties always seem smaller than they really are. Therefore, if the home is dull, Lasauca recommends resorting to home staging, companies that temporarily furnish the house, “because a lived-in house helps you imagine yourself living it inside.” Another recommendation if you buy a property to rent it or sell it is that the interiors are as neutral as possible, "not to be very strident, a red wall can be beautiful, but it is better if you paint it white, the client will personalize it."

The most unexpected and surprising sale that Lasauca remembers is that of a four-story building on Serrano Street in Madrid: “A client from the Philippines was looking for an apartment and that same day he ended up buying the entire property to live in.” He likes Tres Torres, the neighborhood where he was born, and walking along the Aigües road: “You see Barcelona from above and you say to yourself, how beautiful it is,” and he points out the Maresme as his paradise of disconnection.

The manager is concerned about the recent Housing law. “Price restrictions may not be the best solution. Tax incentives for renters can be more effective in making housing more accessible for everyone. Limiting investment options can only worsen an already very serious situation.”