Mojo Estates Talks Lawyers – House of Mojo
This month, the Mojo boys are joined by the Mojo girls, Lorena and Gema, the company’s lawyers, to discuss why it’s so important to have a lawyer you can trust when buying a property.
Buying or selling a house is never a simple task. Full of paperwork, hidden fees, and a house-buying lingo that can make things tough to get your head around. Add that to trying to buy a house in a foreign country, where more often than not you don’t understand the language, hidden clauses, illegal builds, and many people trying to cut corners, things can start to get a little complicated.
In Spain, just having an estate agent isn’t going to cut it. You need a lawyer too. Someone to do the due diligence; to talk to the bank; to negotiate on your behalf. Someone you can trust. But as co-founder of Mojo, Per, says: “Just like not all builders are good builders, not all lawyers are good lawyers…” Mojo is more than just a Real estate agency. In fact, there are five different sub-divisions in the company: Mojo Estates, Mojo Capitals, Mojo Invest, Mojo Sharing, and Mojo Rentals.
On top of this, they also have in-house legal services. The boys call this the ‘House of Mojo’. When I sat down with Mojo lawyers Lorena Rus and Gema Martinez, immediately noticed how warm and friendly they were. I felt calm in their presence.
This, Per tells me, is just one of the reasons he hired the girls. “You need to feel safe and comfortable with your lawyer. There should be mutual trust between you.”
The right qualifications
Both Lorena and Gema studied at Malaga University and grew up in Andalucía too, so they know the local area very well. Combined, they have over 20 years of experience and five years at Mojo. They know all the right questions to ask, all the background checks to do, and make sure no stone is left unturned.
The girls speak brilliant English, which many of Mojo’s clients are happy to communicate in, but if a specific language is required, they have plenty of others in-house who are able to translate. Lorena tells me this is incredibly important as they speak to their clients every step of the way, unraveling the rather complicated Spanish system and navigating them through the process.
From: Marbella Age: 36
Studied at: Córdoba University(2009)& Málaga University (2011)
Qualification: Law degree & Master in law practice
Time at MOJO: 2 years
From: Antequera Age: 33
Studied at: Malaga University (2012)
Qualification: Law degree
Time at MOJO:3 years
If you have bought a house in Spain, you’ll know there’s A LOT of paperwork. And unlike other countries, it can’t be done online. The lawyer has to physically go to the public institutions they’re speaking to, such as utility companies, and the Town Hall, so having good contacts and relationships is key. Otherwise, things can take a very long time…
Avoid the court
Unless there really is no other way out, Lorena says you should avoid going to the courts at all costs. The minute you do, the power is taken out of your hands and put into that of the judge. “If your lawyer often ends up in arguments over the little things, don’t mistake this for due diligence, some lawyers feel like they have to make a fuss about everything, to make it look like they’re worth the money. A good lawyer should be able to settle (most) issues, out of the court.”
If all of the above is done correctly, trust should come naturally. When you sign the power over your lawyer, you should do it with confidence and excitement. You’re about to buy a house in Spain…
Why is Mojo different?
It might sound cliché, but Mojo really does have your best interests at heart. They’re honest – at times brutally. They offer a 360-degree service, thanks to the House of Mojo, which means you can do everything in one place, and they have brilliant knowledge and contacts, not to mention years of experience in the property market. Uniquely, Mojo also offers a 50% discount when you use one of their in-house lawyers to buy a property. And if you’re selling one of their properties, they’ll give you a lawyer completely FREE. Shall I show you where to sign?
Tips and tricks:
If you’re selling a house, get a bank evaluation; if you’re buying one, make sure it has one. Do your due diligence, does your lawyer know their stuff? Make sure the house is legalised. Make sure you create a Will in Spain; the process will be easier and faster. Do you buy a property with furniture? Remember you’ll need to pay tax on this. “A lawyer should make you feel safe, confident. There should be mutual trust between you.”