A slow UK property market is causing delays for some people to sell up and move abroad but that certainly wasn’t an issue for Suzanne Haider and her family. The private tutor and husband Musa put their home in Sale, greater Manchester, on the market in February, it sold for full asking price within days. “We flew into a panic! We had to buy a house and arrange a move to Spain within three months!” she says.
Their story is proof that it can be done (with a bit of help from the right experts). But it was far from being an impulse move, explains Suzanne. “After visiting Spain every year we loved the culture, the weather and the energy it seems to give me when I am there. One day we’ll go to Spain, we often said."
“Yet when Musa was made redundant from his computer programming job, we decided the time was right. My private tutoring business had moved completely online during the pandemic and there was no reason why I couldn’t run it from Spain. So we said, ‘let’s do it!’”
When their house went under offer more quickly than they anticipated they booked a trip to A Place in the Sun’s show in Manchester in March. Chatting to Sun Lawyers about the digital nomad visa made them optimistic about being able to make the move. They spotted the company Spain Property Specialists in the show guide and made contact with Zoe Doran, the agency’s owner. A trip out to Spain was booked in.
“Still in something of a panic, we met with Zoe in Murcia to look at some properties. I have to say she filled me with relief when she suggested not to worry, they could find us a property, and indeed help with everything.”
The couple, who have two boys of 18 and 21, wanted a three-bedroom villa with use of a swimming pool. Their budget was €150,000. “We toured around Murcia and then the southern Costa Blanca and really liked Villamartin. It was a quiet area close to the sea.
"I didn’t think we’d be able to afford a house, but Zoe showed us a detached house with shared pool that had just come on the market – in fact we were the first to view it.
Despite this, and the fact it was €15,000 over our budget, we offered €150,000 and it was accepted.”
Next up it was sorting out the move – including their Bengal cat – and then their visas. Musa is also teaching online now – Maths and Physics – whilst Suzanne works with children preparing for the 11-plus exam, and GSCE English.
“It’s all going really well,” says Suzanne, following their move this summer. “We love having an early-morning swim in the pool before getting down to work. There are some great restaurants, and the boys love it – they are looking for jobs in both the UK and Spain. We are going to call our home Casa de la sueños – house of dreams – as it really has been hard to believe that it has happened already, and so quickly. I’ve always watched the A Place in the Sun TV show and loved it but we needed something to push us into making it happen.”