“Pensioner’s paradise” in Spain becomes an alternative to Palanga – Respublika.lt

“Pensioner’s paradise” in Spain becomes an alternative to Palanga – Respublika.lt
“Pensioner’s paradise” in Spain becomes an alternative to Palanga – Respublika.lt

Tenerife has a population of about one million. This is about half of the entire population of the Canary Islands. The island is 30 times smaller than Lithuania. In its center stands the 20 km diameter, 3,718 m high Teide volcano, the third largest in the world.

Vida Cechanavičienė, co-owner of the real estate agency (NT), who moved to Tenerife with her family nine years ago, says that Lithuanians became especially active in real estate in Tenerife after the war in Ukraine started.

It’s no secret that some compatriots considered the islands about 1,500 kilometers away from Europe as a safe place to hide from geopolitical upheavals.

“Then the prices started to grow faster. Now the boom has abated a bit, but prices in Tenerife are growing every year,” says V. Cechanavičienė.

According to her, a one-bedroom apartment with an ocean view can currently be purchased for approximately 180 thousand. euros, two-bedroom – for approximately 260 thousand. euros. Cheaper options are available.

The specificity of the island is that apartments that cannot be sold before the summer season are expensive. This way you can save 10-15 percent of the price.

Great climate

However, V. Cechanavičienė singles out the climate as the main advantage in Tenerife, because practically the whole year the weather is mild, the temperature fluctuates between 20-26 degrees Celsius. And you can swim in the ocean all year round.

“Lithuanians who previously bought apartments in mainland Spain are also looking for housing in Tenerife. They feel kind of cheated, because they thought that there are no winters in Spain,” the real estate expert notes.

According to her, Lithuanians buy basically various objects, the ones closer to the water are more in demand.

He also buys second homes for investment. The owners often use the apartment themselves for a few months and rent it out the rest of the time.

Rent prices vary depending on the location of the housing and other additional conditions and are similar to those in Lithuania. A one-room apartment can be rented for 400 euros, while better apartments cost 1,500 euros per month.

“When buying a house, state taxes amount to 6.5%, another 200-400 euros per year need to be paid in real estate tax”, V. Cechanavičienė calculates the additional costs.

Also about another 3 percent. there is a notary fee. Real estate agencies also charge an additional fee for their services. It is usually around 3-5 percent.

Although heating is not required in Tenerife, once air conditioning and other services are taken into account, utility bills usually range from €50 to €250 per month.

Apartments are usually sold renovated, with basic furniture. These are the most common previously built apartments. Land supply in Tenerife is limited. There are not many new real estate projects and they are being developed further from the coast.

You also need to be very careful when buying a plot of land for construction. Most of the free land is dedicated to agriculture and it will be practically impossible to change the purpose.

If furnished separately, on average, the furnishing of an apartment would cost around 900-1,000 euros per square meter. m. It is necessary to obtain permission from the municipality for repairs.

Young people are coming

V. Cechanavičienė says that the stereotype that the Canary Islands are chosen for life by older people and that it is a kind of “pensioner’s paradise” is already a thing of the past.

“Approximately one third of the arriving Lithuanians are young people. They come with their children, and they are already creating and planning families here,” says the interviewer.

She notices that this is a really different contingent of emigrants than in other countries beloved by Lithuanians.

There are no factories or large warehouses in Tenerife where you can easily get a job. Young Lithuanians who come to live here either work remotely or create businesses locally, in the field of catering and service.

Not like in Klaipėda

The former mayor of Klaipėda, Povilas Vasiliauskas, who spent this winter in Tenerife, not only enjoyed the island’s good weather and nature, but also noticed that the number of Lithuanians on the island has increased, and it even seems that there are more of them than the British, Germans or even the Spanish themselves. He shared his good mood and impressions on the social network.

“If anyone thought that by posting an ordinary evening sunset in Tenerife, I am agitating my compatriots to emigrate <...> – think again!” – P. Vasiliauskas wrote with humor.

He joked that there are socialists in power in Spain, so there is a lot of socialism on the island.

There are no speedometers (tripods), no police raids or surveillance video cameras on every other pole. There is no feeling that “big brother” is watching you.

“There are no traffic lights at every entrance, like, for example, in my beloved Klaipėda. And the climate is too moderate and soft, pampering, not toughening and forming only honesty, not “Nordic character”, – a Klaipėda resident shared a good mood from Tenerife.

According to P. Vasiliauskas, the people around are also gullible, forever smiling, only “thank you – please – sorry”. And they keep celebrating, and celebrating, and celebrating…

“I’m not talking about prices anymore – they only damage character, they don’t encourage either thrift or moderation,” P. Vasiliauskas shared his emotional impressions.

Lithuanian community

V. Cechanavičienė states that the comfort of life in Tenerife is increased by the fact that there is a very active Lithuanian community.

“There is a Lithuanian home, a Lithuanian school, a lot of events and meetings are organized,” says Vida.

She emphasizes that this is a huge contribution of Goda Koriznaitė, the founder of the Lithuanian book house in Tenerife.

The “Casa Lituana” community does not miss all the main holidays of the year. It preserves all Lithuanian traditions and even the Zeppelin Day is not forgotten.

Last Sunday, on the occasion of Lithuania’s Independence Day, the Lithuanian community of Tenerife organized a concert of opera soloist Dovilė Kazonaitė and pianist Rūta Mikelaitytė-Kašubienė on a catamaran.

Goda, who develops websites, previously said that living on the island is like a perpetual vacation.

“When you live in Spain for half a year and the locals believe that you have stayed here, they know you in all the shops, everyone says hello, they know your child’s name, they ask how you are doing every day,” G. Koriznaitė told LRT.

“Tenerife’s Lithuanian community is really alive, strong, diverse and friendly”, Irma Liubertienė, the founder of the Lithuanian school on the beloved island of Lithuanians, told “Delfi”.

According to her, more than 40 children of different ages from 2 years to 4th grade study at the school today. Education at the school costs between 500 and 650 euros per month.

On Saturdays, Lithuanian children who attend Spanish schools and who want to learn the Lithuanian language, nurture Lithuanianness, and celebrate Lithuanian holidays gather at the school. The Lithuanian Saturday school is free for Lithuanian children living on the island, financed by the funds of the Lithuanian education basket.

Competition is growing

According to V. Cechanavičienė, as the Lithuanian community grows in Tenerife, she notices an increase in the number of compatriots who offer brokerage services for buying or renting housing on the island.

“It’s not uncommon for people to have a main job, for example, a teacher, and in their spare time they try to earn extra money like this,” says the real estate agent.

According to her, buyers should pay attention to whether the real estate agent has all the necessary documents and permits to operate. Because it has already happened that compatriots who have suffered from unqualified intermediaries have turned to Vidas, asking them to arrange the documents for the purchase of housing.

“You need to know the local laws and procedures, that’s why I founded the real estate agency with a local resident and we’ve been working together for nine years,” says V. Cechanavičienė.

She emphasizes that a NIE number is necessary to buy a house in Spain, just like a car. It is similar to the personal identification number in Lithuania. It is also needed to open a bank account. Currently, it is more complicated for Lithuanians to open an account. Banks require annual declarations, employment contracts, bank account balances or statements.

By the way, permanent residents of Tenerife with resident status are entitled to a discounted allocation to mainland Spain. This way you can save up to 75 percent of the price.

Well, is everything really so great in Tenerife?

Mr. Vasiliauskas warns that sometimes Tenerife is invaded by “calima” – an invasion of sand dust brought by the dry, hot wind from the Sahara. Then the sun almost breaks through this “gift” of the Sahara desert.

Well, the real pluses and minuses can only be discovered by living in Tenerife permanently.

The article is in Lithuanian

Tags: Pensioners paradise Spain alternative Palanga Respublika .lt


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