You’ve found the perfect Spanish home, closed escrow and just finished moving in. As you happily fall asleep, all seems well in the world. An hour later, you bolt up in bed to an ear splitting sound. All is no longer well in the world.
An Unholy Racket
If you saw the movie “My Cousin Vinny”, you know what I’m talking about. For those that haven’t, the movie centres on a lawyer, Vinny, who moves to defend his nephew against criminal charges. Every evening, Vinny goes to sleep only to be awoken by some blasting noise. When house hunting, you need to make sure you don’t get “Vinny’d.”
When you find an area or home you like, make absolutely sure you drive through the area looking for any potential noise producers. Roll down the window, turn off the car stereo and just listen. You might be surprised at what you hear.
Take note of your prospective home’s location to the nearest airport, even if you are 15 minutes away by car you may still suffer from some noise disturbance if you are on the flight path. An easy and free way to check is to go to www.flightradar24.com and search for your airport, and then zoom out the map to a level where you can see exactly where your prospective home is located, this will show you of any aircraft movement in the area at that specific time.
If you near a motorway, you better figure out how close it is to your prospective home. Make sure you are near the house when traffic goes by, so you can get the full effect. While traffic is an obvious sources of noise, you also need to consider more subtle situations.
Weekend vs. Week Days
Many homebuyers look at houses early on a weekend. This makes sense since you have to work for a living, but it can result in some nasty surprises. The characteristics of a urbanisation on weekends are entirely different than during week days. Make absolutely sure you check out the property during both time periods. To guard against “partying” neighbours, make sure you check the area during evenings as well.
They say home ownership brings peace of mind. Check your urbanisation to make sure this cliché will apply to you !