Real Estate

We started in this activity I would say almost by chance. In fact, when we moved from Argentina in 2002 because of the 2001 crisis, the one of the corralito, we had representations of food produced in Argentina, which we offered to the Hotels. This led us to accept the offer to sell Hotels and to become Hotel Brokers, which in 2015 became part of the Real Estate activity in which we are immersed today.

It has been a very interesting path and the learning we have gained from it has been extremely enriching, both professionally and personally. In this long journey we have met incredible people who have helped us to become better acquainted with the reality of Real Estate in Mallorca, which by the way, has its own intrinsic complexity. 

Without a doubt, being able to navigate these complexities has been a challenge, from which we have emerged successful, albeit sometimes with a few bruises.

Our objective has always been to provide a quality and responsible service, as we believe that the acquisition of a real estate asset, whether for personal or investment purposes, is not the same as buying a pair of shoes. In this respect I always try not to deviate from Steve Jobs’ maxim: “… I know a yardstick for quality. Some people are not used to an environment where excellence is expected.” ….

The complexities I am referring to may seem quaint, but many of them are the result of the lack of professionalism of some of the actors involved in this sector. An example of this is that in Spain there is no law regulating the activity of real estate agents at national level, which establishes the minimum educational requirements for carrying out this activity throughout the country, as is the case in other countries. In short, anyone can work as a real estate agent, even if they do not have the professional aptitude to do so, because it is not the responsibility of the State to regulate this activity, but rather the Autonomous Communities are the ones that have the competence to do so. In this respect, the pioneer in this area has been Catalonia, which since 2010 has had a Compulsory Register of Estate Agents under the auspices of the Generalitat, requiring its members to have a minimum level of 200 hours of vocational training, financial solvency and civil liability insurance. Likewise, the Register is compulsory in Extremadura and Valencia, while in the Autonomous Regions of the Canary Islands, Navarra, Madrid, Murcia and the Basque Country registration is completely voluntary, while in Aragón, Castilla y León, Castilla La Mancha, Asturias, Cantabria, La Rioja and Galicia, the Balearic Islands have not yet defined whether it will be voluntary or compulsory, and Andalusia has failed on the grounds that it is unconstitutional. So, this is the situation of the practice of the profession of Real Estate Agent in Spain today.

Undoubtedly this is not a minor issue, since if we consider that the Real Estate Activity represented in 2022, according to the INE, 11.41% of the Spanish GDP, and in October 2023 there was a total of 167,771 assets transferred, i.e. 9.5% more than in September 2023 but -0.8% than in the same period of the previous year, we estimate that they should be in highly professionalised hands. This would be like saying that 11.41% of Spain’s destiny is in non-specialised hands, a universe too large to be left to chance.

We believe that there are too many interests at stake for us to continue in this situation in the 21st century, although if we compare it within the current world context, this does become a minor issue. 

However, all the minor issues end up integrating and shaping the major issues that end up defining a national and global context, like the number of grains of sand that make up a desert or the bottom of the sea, which is why it is absolutely necessary to find a more than immediate solution to them. 

This is already recognised by the Spanish Constitution in its Art. 47 and on which Law 12/2023 of 24 May (new Housing Law) the basic right to housing, regardless of the economic value and purchasing power of each citizen, to allow these rights to be manipulated by people without knowledge and/or speculative entities with little or no scruples.

Undoubtedly this is an issue that has given and gives a lot to talk about and I imagine it will continue to give a lot to talk about, who knows for who knows how long. In the meantime, in the midst of so much chatter, measures that protect not only buyers and sellers but also Real Estate Agents themselves could be brought down to the level of the concrete and that will benefit the general interest and the community as a whole.