Picture it: You’ve decided on your move to the Costa del Sol and you are searching properties for sale in costa del sol (or whichever foreign location your heart is set on!) you’ve chosen your dream home, you’re looking at flights and you’re itching to get going.
Moving abroad is not quite as simple as that though – as with any other major transition in life, there are loose ends to be tied up. One of the main considerations is what you’re going to do with all the material possessions you’ve accumulated over the years in your home country.
There are likely numerous items with sentimental value, and perhaps even more with a high monetary value. It can be daunting to think about even organizing your possessions into categories, let alone transporting them abroad.
There are options… such as: leave it all behind, take the essentials, or take everything. Fortunately, all options are possible; it’s just a matter of personal choice, and of course how much cost and effort you wish to put into relocation.
If you decide, as many expats do, that leaving or selling your possessions is not the option for you, there are ways to transport your material life. It’s just a matter of knowing how.
Is it time for a garage sale?
The first consideration expats have when moving possessions abroad is usually the cost. It’s not always cheap, that’s for sure. If money isn’t an object, great! But if it is, perhaps it would be wiser to get a sale going. No doubt you’ll have countless items you’re happy to part with, and these can not only generate extra cash for the move, but also lighten your load considerably.
The more ‘stuff’ you have acquired over the years, the earlier the sale should start! It can be surprisingly difficult to get rid of it all, even when items are perceived to have a high value. Ebay can be a savior here, but it’s better to start early with that too in case you find that you need to relist items just ahead of the move date.
That which you’ve decided to part with, but which doesn’t sell, can be gifted. Whether it’s to a charity shop or your nearest and dearest, it’s certainly easier to give it away than pay for the shipping just because it didn’t sell.
The shipping of your essentials… or the whole lot!
We know that there are always going to be certain items that you associate with home, and you’ll want to ship them whatever the cost. Ideally, those things you can’t let go of will be more like the ornate Chinese lamp you picked up traveling, and not the huge, heavy antique wall unit in your lounge!
The most simple way to get your essentials shipped over to Spain is via a relocation company. The reason this is so much simpler, even if more expensive, is that the effort involved in contacting shipping companies for quotes, hashing out the details with each one and then comparing them, can be stressful and time consuming. It can take weeks. Not to mention the paperwork, documents and insurance you need to provide for customs. A relocation company is experienced at all of this and will take the responsibility off your hands – this will count for a lot when you have so many other considerations to take care of.
Speaking of insurance, this is important. Although the chances of your container being damaged or sinking to the seabed are slim to none, it’s not impossible and has happened. If your worldly goods are in there, you’ll want to cover the eventuality that they don’t arrive so that you can replace them. The relocation company should be able to advise you on this.
You need to know the rules about what you can and cannot ship. If something illegal were to be found in your container, the police will confiscate the entire container.
There is one last consideration… how long you’re planning to stay as an expat in Spain because may be you want too see the houses for sale in costa del sol. If you think there is a chance that you may return to your home country, it may be better to reconsider shipping everything. Sometime expats returning home find that they have to deal with unexpected bureaucracy. It is worth checking the laws for bringing your possessions back again, to be on the safe side.
If you’re on the fence…
It can be a challenge to make this decision, but if you go with the first option and sell off all that you don’t need, you may make more money than anticipated. This can surely go towards a total lifestyle and interior design reinvention… which is surely all part of the fun of repatriation!
Spanish design has a special something it can call its own, and can be very homely and beautiful. Interior design and acquisition of new (or antique furniture) in local styles can actually make for quite an exhilarating experience!
If you’ve made a packet on the sale of all your old ‘stuff’, you won’t feel half as guilty about denting the budget! Whatever you decide to do, we hope you maintain the excitement around your move to the Costa del Sol… and a little reminder: the Paradise Marbella team of experts have a wealth of experience in all areas of property and moving. We’ve helped many expats get settled into their dream homes and advised them on the processes leading up to it.
If you’re in the process of looking for your Costa del Sol villa or Marbella town house, you know where to come.