We, Bianca Schijvenaars-Radjbali and Kees Schijvenaars, taxi driver and municipal official respectively (now retired), first came across Andalusia in 2017. We were enjoying our holidays in Benalmádena then. What struck us then was the conviviality of the Andalusians and the relaxed lifestyle.

A few years later in 2018, we visited with friends ,a friend of Bianca's and her husband, in Canillas de Albaida. They run an apartment complex there. We were then completely immersed in the beautiful Spanish life. Several times we said to each other 'how beautiful and good life is here', without intending to emigrate. As time passed, we talked about 'the nefarious plan' to make the move to Spain. The only major obstacle was our son, daughter-in-law and two gorgeous grandchildren. Could we really live so far away from them? Will we still see them often? Questions that popped into our minds incessantly.

Bianca and Kees buy a house in SpainIn the end, we decided to emigrate to Spain. At first, the intention was to make the move around 2025. But the lousy climate in the Netherlands and my retirement accelerated everything. In September 2022, we took the decision to 'make the big move'. Our house in Essen (Belgium) was quickly sold and in July 2022 we had to deliver our house.

We had been scouring the internet for years looking for a house in the campo. And we had quite a few requirements for our new home. Those requirements were prompted by the fact that we have 2 dogs (dobermann and Dutch shepherd) and our parrots (10 pairs) needed suitable housing. Because of possible nuisance to neighbours, we wanted to live freely. We also considered important: a nice view and at least 3 bedrooms, so we could accommodate our family. Another requirement was not too far away from Canillas de Albeida, as our friends live there and we love that area. A swimming pool was also a requirement.

On 5 January 2023, I saw a post on Facebook about Second Home Andalusia. That appealed to me and I sent a message. The very same day I received a response from Martin de Vries. He suggested a quick phone call, which I gladly accepted. Without any expectations, I started talking to Martin and immediately there was a click and trust. We decided to go ahead with Second Home Andalusia. And we haven't regretted that for a moment.

We gave Martin our requirements and budget for the new home and discussed properties that were on our list. Sometimes by phone, often via whatsapp. That worked fine. Properties were added and others dropped. In the end, we had a list of properties we liked.

From 5 to 15 May 2023, we had planned to go and look at houses together with Martin. Absolutely not with the intention of buying anything yet, purely informative/orientative. Nothing could be further from the truth. The third house, which we visited, totally hit the nail on the head. Everything was right. Now what? It took us a short time to follow through, as that very day we made an offer on the house. Martin hit the brakes several times; is the feeling right? There are other houses on the list. Finally, we reached agreement on the purchase/sale of 'our' house. On 13 May 2023, we were already sitting together to sign the preliminary sales agreement.

On 18 July 2023, we left for Spain for good. When we arrived, Martin had arranged with the estate agent to visit our house one more time. On Monday 24 July 2023, we signed the final sales agreement at a notary in Málaga and became the proud owners of our little paradise in the campo of Canillas de Albaida at an altitude of 650 metres with great views of the impressive mountain la Maroma.

Our experience with Second Home Andalusia, especially with Martin? In a word: PERFECT. He unburdened us, offered a listening ear, gave useful tips, shared his knowledge of local conditions and was proactive.

Partly thanks to Second Home Andalusia, we managed to make the right choice in the jungle of Spanish estate agents. So you are not going to see us again on 'A place in the sun'.

Kees & Bianca Schrijvenaars

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We have no shop window or many properties for sale on this website because we believe in personal attention & tailor-made offers; therefore we always work on a specific request basis. From experience we know that buying a home in Spain is different than in your own country, therefore we make every effort to make it run as smoothly as possible.