Smart saved money on our Corfu purchase
Peter and Deborah had always wanted to spend time in the sun, away from the grey English weather. Greece was their country of choice so when Deborah’s mother sadly passed away they decided to use their inheritance both to invest their money wisely and to make their dreams come true.
“We wanted to do something adventurous”, Peter explains. “I was soon to retire so it seemed the perfect time to turn our dreams into reality. Our intention,” Peter continues, “is that once my wife retires we will spend six months in Greece and six in the UK – roll on the day!”
To this end Peter and Deborah became the proud owners of a 150-year-old traditional house in Corfu some 30 kilometres out of the capital. Situated near some immensely upmarket homes, they were able to get the property for the price they wanted as the home has only a limited sea view and is about fifty meters from the road. “This all conspired to drop the price and put it in our price range” comments Peter. “But, having said that, we would never have been able to negotiate the whole purchase process without the regular emails plus the website help and support from a company that I found on the Internet.
“Searching the Internet for ‘advice on buying homes in Corfu’ the Overseas Guide Company came up,” Peter explains. “On browsing their website we found their advice comprehensive and detailed, explaining exactly the help we needed, who could provide it and why we needed them rather than using our own English equivalents. I signed up to receive informative emails from them some time before we bought and am very grateful for their helpful advice and information services.
“We eventually bought our home through an estate agent they recommended and were very happy with them. We also used a local solicitor in Corfu and she has been excellent,” Peter adds. The purchase process was delayed by problems caused by their English bank, the house owner prevaricating and difficulties experienced in understanding the various documents, all of which were in Greek. “Eventually, I used Google Translate to find the general meaning of the documents,” remembers Peter.
It was from The Overseas Guides Company that the Dohertys found a recommendation to a currency company, Smart Currency Exchange. When moving money abroad, especially large sums such as those for property payments, it is advisable to use a currency company over a high street bank as money saved can add up to thousands of pounds. “I couldn’t find anybody better,” Peter comments. “We have been very pleased with their speed and efficiency as well as their excellent rates – from now on we will continue to use the services of the Smart Currency people.”
Work continues on their new home. Peter explains: “We went over for twelve weeks last year – four or five visits in all. We did most of the work ourselves and painted much of the inside over the Easter holidays. Initially the place looked a bit of a mess, with old furniture and a rusted stove outside awaiting clearance but we had that cleared by the end of the summer. We have no intention of renting out – just having friends to stay – so we can pretty much work at our own pace.
“There is so much we wish to see and do on the island,” Peter continues. “We hope to go on Hilary Whitton Paipeti’s guided walks for instance. We have ambitions to walk the spine of Corfu – I believe there is a footpath from the North to the South of the island taking in the mountain tops and valleys along the centre of the island. We still have many bays and inlets to explore and swim and many restaurants to visit and eat in!”
To see a range of property for sale in Greece visit the Greece listings on Rightmove Overseas. Anyone who needs to transfer money to complete a property transaction in Greece should use a currency specialist to exchange their pounds into euros. For more information, contact Smart Currency Exchange.
To understand the full step-by-step process to buying a property in Greece, collect The Overseas Guides Company’s ‘Greece Property Buying Guide’
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