Ibiza Rental Woes


As we come to the end of the summer season and the winter starts it’s the traditional time for Ibiza residents to look for a property to rent on an annual basis however it’s becoming more difficult to find suitable properties on the white isle and those that are available can often have eye watering prices and on some occasions involve unscrupulous owners or agents.

Summer rents are still relatively ‘easy’ although can be very expensive, a winter rent is straightforward with an excess of properties however an annual rent remains a real problem with owners cashing in on Ibiza’s massive worldwide popularity during the summer and leaving their property empty for the rest of the year. As a tenant there is always a temptation to sign a cheap winter deal then ‘sort out something for summer later’ but this is a false economy as summer rents drastically increase in price and you will always pay roughly the same price for a 4/6/12 month lease so a 12 month agreement is always the best option.

The simplifying of the process to legalize detached and semi detached properties for touristic use has seen many owners now go down this route knowing that they can get more money in 4 months than they can in 12 months. For an owner it’s a no-brainer but it has left a large gulf for those wanting to rent decent houses all year round. I’ve lost track of how many times we at Ibiza Property Shop have been asked for a “nice 2 or 3 bedroom house in the country with a small garden, all year round, for around 1000 euros per month”. 

Unfortunately it is rare for agencies to get these types of properties as they will often go to friends or family as there is such a long waiting list. If we ever do then they will go within days (or hours) to the lucky person who just happened to be in the right place at the right time.

October to January is the window of opportunity to start an annual rent, any later and it’s getting too close to the summer and potential landlords may decide on just a summer rent. The best place to start is to ask around local Spanish bars and restaurants as that is where the Spanish owners will ‘advertise’, not on Facebook. Social media advertisers tend to be more savvy and ask for premium rates. If you do find a good option then don’t procrastinate or you will be pipped by the next person in line, it’s first come first served and dog eat dog! 

A contract should always be signed even if it’s just a private one which clearly states the roles of the tenant and landlord. If the owner doesn’t want to sign a contract then it’s probably not a good idea to proceed although beggars can’t be choosers sometimes and ‘my word is my bond’ still counts for something on the white isle, especially with the older generation.

Unfortunately you may also encounter the dodgy ‘agent’. Facebook is full of horror stories of these go-betweens who often complicate the process and charge for the privilege. Like most things in life there are good ones and there are not so good ones so do some research and ask questions. Sometimes it’s easier to pay a fee and get the property you want however make sure the process is transparent and the fees are relative to the deal.

So if you are presently looking for a rental property don’t be too despondent but you will need to do the rounds, knock on doors and SPEAK to people. Don’t just put a message on Facebook and expect an orderly queue to form. This is Ibiza and it’s never easy but when you are eventually sitting in your ideal property you can smile and recall the journey but also enjoy the quality of life that only Ibiza can offer. 

Author: Martin Makepeace

Englishman living and working in Ibiza since 1991. Entrepreneur with a passion for villas, boats, sunsets and San Antonio. Read my blogs, listen to my podcasts and catch me on Radio One Mallorca every Tuesday morning.

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