The most common reasons that people have for wanting to move to the Mallorca area are the clean air, great outdoor sports, picturesque beaches and beautiful scenery. So, how do you go about renovating your dream home without impacting on the environment?
For coastal properties, be aware that there is Spanish law which was introduced in 1988 to protect the coastline from over-exuberant property developers. But it also affected existing properties on the coastline that had been built before 1988. Many of these homes are now deemed to be on public land, and as such the owners are unable to sell their properties. They have effectively ended up as tenants of the state. So the advice is to check with the local government office (usually the town hall will be able to help) where the state boundary lies and ensure your property truly lies on private ground.
If you are looking for a property in Mallorca to renovate, then you must ensure permissions have been granted by the local Town Hall (Ajuntament). If no permission has yet been granted, you will need to submit detailed plans (drawn up by a professional architect or surveyor) regarding the development. Only tradesmen registered in Spain are legally allowed to undertake building works (this ensures they have the correct level of insurance) if you are funding the purchase via a bank.
Restorations & conversions
What better way to build your dream home than converting or restoring an existing Mallorca property? Historic buildings have a certain charm and the combination of traditional and modern elements in a converted farmhouse or barn can add a really exciting dynamic to your home. Restoration projects can be very daunting for the uninitiated and it can be difficult to know where to start. Speaking to an expert is vital but here are a few quick tips:
- Fix structural deficiencies such as rotted sills, bulging walls, insect damage, sagging beams, wood rot
- Replace worn-out roofing materials
- Remove or encapsulate potentially hazardous materials, such as asbestos
- Repair, upgrade or replace outdated heating, plumbing or electrical systems (wholesale replacement, however, is not always needed)
- Improve resale value by removing architecturally insensitive and in-compatible remodelings, particularly from the 1970s era
- Keep up with routine maintenance, such as cleaning out gutters, painting exterior woodwork or repairing broken fixtures
Upgrade the kitchen and bathrooms to modern standards. The styling of these improvements can be within the spirit of the home's historic period or even thoroughly contemporary.
Your home could be costing you money every day. With the rapid advances of building techniques and construction methods even homes that are only 5 years old can use significantly more energy than recently built houses. All homes for sale in Spain now need an energy certificate similar to those found on kitchen appliances.
This Energy Performance Certificate (Certificado de Eficiencia Energética, CEE) gives information about the property’s energy use and fficiency. The rating is between A and G based on its energy efficiency and carbon emissions.
If a homeowner or landlord does not have an EPC, they are at risk of being fined. Sales and rental contracts can be declared void.
Once you've made your home nice and cosy, the next step is to see how you can provide your energy requirements in a more efficient way. The market is awash with innovative products that claim to cut your bills by huge amounts using the power of the sun or the wind but do they really work? Well the answer is, 'it depends'.
Factors such as the age and construction of your building, how and when it's occupied, and the local climatic conditions can combine to provide either a successful solution or an expensive mistake. Hidden by mountains some areas barely receive any daytime sun during the winter so solar panels wouldn't be the ideal choice! But with the open spaces and sunshine in the South coast of France this could be the prefect solution.
Speaking to a professional energy consultant can make sure that you get the right solution tailored for your home and budget.