5 Key Tips to Buy a Flat in Madrid

December 12th, 2012 | Posted by guiri in House Hunting | Pierre - (0 Comments)
How can I find this perfect apartment to buy in Madrid ?
How can I find this perfect apartment to buy in Madrid ?

How can I find this perfect apartment to buy in Madrid ?

Real estate market trends for 2012 reveal that average home prices in Madrid will fall another 20 percent, at least between 2012 and 2014, after having already dropped by an average of 20 percent since 2007.

The market being full of risk and opportunities, I recommend you follow these 5 tips – a short summary of what I would recommend to clients and friends:

1)   Beware of the market variations in Madrid, and buy now only if you plan to hold the property for more than a minimum of five years.

2)   On top of the purchase price, you will have to spend 10 to 15% in taxes, commissions and fees.

3)   Real estate agents in Madrid usually charge commission to the seller: 6 percent is the average. This is different to other parts of Spain. However, some agencies, such as Red Pisos, charge 3 percent to each party, the seller and the buyer. Just be aware that, in most cases, you will not have to pay commission, but it may occur.

4)   Negotiate with patience and preparation. All real estate professionals know that average advertised prices are 20 to 30 percent higher than the final sale price. To negotiate well in Madrid, you need to be patient, have alternatives and be prepared.

5)   Get help, you will need support, and keep in mind that real estate agents payed by the seller are not your friends. It’s recommended that expats use the services of a flathunter: a professional who can help get the best property at the best price.

If you want more advice, do check my website Moving2Madrid with the detailed version of this post, all the interactive maps to choose the best neighborhoods and more advice.

If you have a specific questions, do not hesitate to send me an e-mail – I will come back to you within 48 hours.

Yours Madridly,
+Pierre-Alban Waters

Just for you, my interactive map of the best family-friendly neighbourhoods in Madrid !

Recently, I have been getting questions from people moving to Madrid with their families. And the questions of parents organizing a move to Madrid are quite different to the questions of expats moving alone or as as couple. To make their search easier and give them a simple and visual guide to decide which neighbourhood would be the best for them, I created this interactive map of family-friendly neighbourhoods:

Just for you, my interactive map of the best family-friendly neighbourhoods in Madrid !

Just for you, my interactive map of the best family-friendly neighbourhoods in Madrid !


The best family-friendly neighbourhoods in Madrid have been indicated, with a short description, with also rental prices for those in the center of Madrid where prices are quite uniform.

I advise you do the following:

  1. Take a look at the map, first to get used to how Madrid is distributed and what are the options.
  2. Then try and calculate thanks to google how long would it take to go to work and to the very center of Madrid, Puerta del Sol.
  3. Check if the rental prices comply with your criteria
  4. Check detailed posts of these neighbourhoods: Salamanca, Retiro, Chamberi. As for the suburbian neighbourhoods, as they are so diverse, do a search on google images and do some google street view to get an idea of how it is to live there.

Of course, “your mileage may vary” and this selection is a reduction of reality : it is intended to simplify your search and give you useful tools and insights to feel safer and more confident about your move to Madrid. I know many happy families in other neighbourhoods and if you have any question, do not hesitate to email me or tweet me @pierrewaters.


Also, do check this article from Britannia Movers with quality relocation tips.


Madridly yours,
Pierre Waters – Moving2Madrid

My google+

Guiri Guest Angie is a Graduate student who is planning her move to Madrid.  She will be moving to Madrid with her husband who serves in the US Army. Angie has a love and passion for traveling and is up for almost anything. She looks forward to learning Spanish, running-half-marathons, cooking, photography and eating while in Madrid.


Hola! My name is Angie. I never thought I’d say this, but I’m moving to Madrid in four weeks! My husband and I got the official call in March that we have been assigned to be stationed in Madrid, Spain. Initially, we were both beyond excited, but then it really started to sink in that not only would we be moving to Europe but also to a major, metropolitan city.

As the initial shock and excitement began to wear down and reality sunk in, I began to think about what to do with our two wonderful, yet sheltered babies.  Of course, I’m not talking about children, but fur babies.  Our two Pomeranians are just as much a part of this move as we are.  After all, they’re family.  We have always lived in small, quiet neighborhoods with big backyards, but how would they react to such a huge change in environment?

I’ve heard that Madrid, like much of Europe, is a very pet-friendly city.  I wondered though, would it be difficult to find living arrangements that welcome dogs?  Naturally, my first concern with moving overseas was getting my dogs used to the city life.  I needed to find a place for us to stay while getting my dogs integrated into the city.  First things first, I had to find accommodations for my husband, my dogs and myself in Madrid while we discover the city and find permanent living arrangements. While I loved Spain-Select temporary apartments, they unfortunately, did not accept pets.  After doing lots of research in finding a place that we may have to inhabit for the next four to eight weeks, I found MV apartment hotels.

Not only are they modern, furnished, and centrally located, but also they are pet-friendly!  I am so excited that we will be able to introduce our sheltered animals (who are used to their own little haven) to the sprawling city life in our cute and clean hotel apartment – a place we can call (temporary) home!  I can’t think of a better way for my husband and I to transition into our new life together in Spain than with two happy fur babies!

Neighborhood: Goya

February 4th, 2011 | Posted by allisonstendardi in Allison | House Hunting - (2 Comments)

I live in the Goya barrio, which is part of the district of Salamanca, here in Madrid. More specifically, it’s basically a giant square bordered by Principe de Vergara, Calle O’Donnell, Calle del Doctor Esquerdo, and Calle de Don Ramon de la Cruz.

When we first moved to Madrid and were thinking about where to live we were admittedly a bit overwhelmed. Do we want the hustle and bustle of Sol? The twisty streets of La Latina? The gritty yet cool area of Chueca? Or do we head out of the center altogether? We decided on Goya for a variety of reasons. It’s very close to Retiro, a quick one-line ride into Sol on the red line, is rather upscale without being pretentious, and is pretty close to IE, my husband’s university.

I’d say one of the most awesome things about Goya is living near the Palacio de Deportes. I’ve never actually seen a concert here, but I’ve been entertained on many evenings by the happens in Plaza San Felipe II, right next to the venue. People lined up for concerts, food stalls, sometimes even music that’s being played outside of the Palacio de Deportes makes for an entertaining evening. If Shakira comes back to Madrid I will certainly have to secure a ticket and see her from a proper seat. On the other side of the Palacio is the Real Casa de la Moneda, which is basically a big money museum.

For food shopping there are plenty of options in Goya. There is a large supermarket at one of the two giant Corte Ingles buildings at the Goya/Alcala intersection. The other Corte Ingles building houses a level dedicated to luxury and gourmet goods, along with a stocked papeleria with a small greeting card section. A decent-sized Carrefour is located on Calle Conde de Penalver, not far from the Correos, and a KFC (hey, you might be hungry after waiting 45 minutes to post something). There is also a row of fantastic local shops (a butcher, fruit/veggies, and a fish guy) located on Hermosilla, if you’d like some local flavor instead of the big brands.

Just outside of the technical Goya zone, on the southern side, is a great little movie theater that plays English films, Renoir Retiro. Mondays are discount days. The theater only shows 4 movies at a time, and the theaters themselves are rather small, creating an intimate and friendly atmosphere. They even have a book swap book shelf on the second floor. Take a book, bring a book!

Other useful places to know: there is a hospital and a dentist’s office (a Sanitas office) on Calle del Doctor Esquerdo, and two Chinese “bazaar” shops (which are full of cheap but often useful items), one on Hermosilla, and the other on Alcantara.

Overall I really like living in Goya. It’s close to everything in Madrid, but isn’t smack in the middle of the party. Beautiful balconies, quaint European side streets, and proximity to the park and main center makes Goya a great barrio to live in.

My husband and I arrived in Madrid in early September, exhausted from our 31-day journey on the Camino de Santiago. We were on the hunt for a place to stay while we sorted out our living arrangements for our 15 month stay in Madrid. After weeks of albergues and hostels we were not in the mood for that here in Madrid. Luckily some friends happened upon Spain Select, a company that offers luxurious Spanish apartments from stays as short as 3 days, up to a year or more.

We chose Ventas, which is located just down the street from the bullring. In fact, I could open the windows in the living room, stick my head out, and see it from there! I thought that was pretty cool, and the awesome location encouraged a trip to see a bullfight.

Spain Select has apartments all over Madrid (and all over Spain for that matter), so you can chose your desired neighborhood, apartment size, and price, and go from there. They offer short-term rentals (stays of three nights or more), medium-term rentals (stays of one or more months), and long-term rentals (stays of one or more years). We stayed in the Ventas apartment for one week, but I could have stayed an entire year. The place was gorgeous. Creamy white furniture, colored throw pillows, white lilies, decadent shower products, and an amazingly comfy mattress. It was very stylish, yet also very comfortable (although I admit I didn’t stray from the dining room table with my glass of red wine!)

The high-speed internet, which didn’t fail once, was a huge plus. This is a great option instead of booking a traditional hotel. We had more space, a fully equipped kitchen, laundry, internet was included in the price, and it was at a lower cost than staying at a hotel. With all the guests you’ll have coming to see you in Madrid, this is a great option for them, and for the whole group if you plan on traveling around Spain to cities like Sevilla and Valencia.

Spain Select
T. +34 91523 7451
F. +34 91521 5148
E. info@spain-select.com