Rainer Schmitz, CEO of Alicante Real Estate, in an interview
Rainer Schmitz is the owner and managing director of the German real estate agency Alicante Real Estate based in La Mata, Torrevieja. Together with his team, the trained office administrator personally, trustworthy and competent takes care of the wishes of customers who want to buy a property on the southern Costa Blanca.
A native of Hamburg with a penchant for music, computer and computer science, he grew up in Spain and Germany before settling on the Costa Blanca. We meet for an interview on the terrace of the yacht club Real Club Náutico de Torrevieja. It is one of his favorite places in the modern beach town in the south of the country Valencia.
Viele Since the mid-1970s, many thousands of Germans have been living on the Costa Blanca as long-term tourists, retirees or residents. What is the reason for the popularity of the southern province of Alicante?
❗We have a very healthy Mediterranean climate here with over 320 days of sunshine and a mean annual temperature of 18 degrees Celsius. The good sea air, good for the skin, the lungs, the bones, as well as one of the best climates of Europe, that makes the region very interesting. Torrevieja beats everything. I once created a statistic, the number of transactions in real estate purchases and sales is record, about 6,000 this year alone. Since you can ignore Benidorm in comparison and also Alicante city can not keep up there. The tendency to buy a property in Torrevieja is even increasing.
❓The Spanish Mediterranean coast, especially the Costa Blanca and Torrevieja, is very attractive for Central and Northern Europeans who are considering buying a house in the south by the sea.
❗All right. Torrevieja is Valencia's fifth largest city after Valencia, Alicante, Castellón and Elche. It is not as it was in the crisis around 2008, when you could bargain here. As a real estate agent, you did not get along as fast as investors bought houses and apartments. When a new low-priced apartment came on the market, the property was often already bought and paid during the visit.
❓How do you rate the infrastructure?
❗The good infrastructure contributes to this, which is a decisive plus here. It is all there! We have two state-of-the-art hospitals in Torrevieja. One of the largest shopping malls in Spain, La Zenia Boulevard, opened a few years ago in neighboring Orihuela Costa. The nice thing is, you will also find a German supermarket here, you will find a Russian supermarket, a Belgian, you really get everything here. As an example, when I moved from Murcia to Torrevieja years ago, I discovered Teewurst at the local Aldi, I thought I was falling away from faith. I ate then only one week black bread and Rügenwalder tea sausage (laughs). Because in the Spanish interior, there was nothing like that. In short, there are even German bakers who bake fresh sourdough bread and rolls.
❓This may also be an advantage of this international and very cosmopolitan enclave on the Costa Blanca.
❗ Without doubt. It is very international here, we have great Spanish restaurants, Belgian restaurants, German restaurants, even fish and chips, popular with the British, are everywhere. And then, as I said, you can feel like in Germany here. Take the example with the tea sausage, in the first year you do not miss that. The availability of local products, that is not important at first, but over time, that gets a certain value. That's the great thing here in Torrevieja, you actually get everything you want here. It is all on site.
❓ Torrevieja and the southern Costa Blanca are best reached from Germany via Alicante airport. The city is geographically ideal.
❗Yes, I like traveling, for example. I sit in the car on a weekend and drive with my wife, for example, in the Sierras de Cazorla, this is the largest natural park in Andalusia. How long are we on the way? No three hours! Málaga and Mabella on the southern Costa del Sol are only four and a half hours drive away. In the state capital, to Madrid, no longer. You already have a location that is really interesting in Spain.
❓Isn't it surprising that Torrevieja has not become much better known abroad?
❗ That's right, it's still too unknown. Many tourists drive on the highway just past the city. Malaga and Marbella or the Costa Brava may be better known in Germany. Ask a German to Torrevieja, no one knows. I think you have to push that a little bit more. We should all band together here to make this area better known, for the benefit of all. This is a classic win-win situation. Whether they are companies, German-speaking service providers and craftsmen, banks, furniture stores, brokers, that would be good for everyone. Torrevieja is increasingly becoming a magnet for residential tourism. The region, in my estimation, has a wonderful future!
❓What are your primary reasons for buying a property on the Costa Blanca?
❗As a holiday home and as a retirement home, these are the main reasons. Many of our customers are already older, so between 45 and 55 years old, so my vintage. It's about them knowing that when you retire, you have something here. Sometimes they also rent their property after the purchase. We help them and as an agency have a license for the rental. The income from these sporadic vacation rentals of the property, which is also a financial aid for the buyer.
❓ Does the Costa Blanca offer more advantages over the sunny and healthy climate compared to everyday life in Germany, Austria or Switzerland?
\"Yes, I think so. With the available pension, for example, you can live much better here, because the purchasing power in Spain is advantageous. With a German or Swiss pension one enjoys here a higher quality of life, absolutely. On the subject of security. Here on the Costa Blanca, you have to see that very clearly, the crime is so low! Nothing happens here, you're safe here.
❓Your real estate agency Alicante Real Estate has made a name for itself in a short time ...
❗We do the best for our customers. The best advertisement is yes the word-of-mouth propaganda. Many of our customers who have successfully and expediently bought a property from us recommend us further and bring their acquaintances with them afterwards. After all, everyone can advertise, that's just a question of the money invested. But in the one and a half years since we got our real estate office in La Mata, we have risen from the smallest agency to the very front brokerage offices. I think we are the number one spot today.
❓You yourself feel here at home on the Costa Blanca and at home.
❗Yes, and I personally feel very connected to the country of Spain. I am at home here. Sure, I realize that I'm a foreigner, you can see that, too. And sure, my Spanish may not be completely accent-free, because you notice my German as a native language yet. But nowadays I even dream in Spanish. I am paying my taxes in Spain, knowing that this will help to make Spain and the services of the state a little better. I do not like the fact that many people do not pay taxes here. I am grateful that I am so well received as a foreigner here. I am even considering whether to accept the Spanish nationality.
❓In view of the many Britons, Belgians and Scandinavians who have bought their second home here in recent years, whether as a holiday home or future retirement home, how do you assess the potential of the German market?
❗I think the Germans are coming. It is our generation that will come. And when they come, they will fall from the sky like raindrops. Germans like to go where other Germans live. The sociability and the German-speaking environment on the Costa Blanca are ideal. You can quickly find your way around. I see a great future here.
Mr. Rainer Schmitz, thank you very much for the interview!
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