Friday, June 15, 2007

Liz & Ian McNeil: "Living in Crete, the best part are the seasons"

We dreamed about owning a place in the Mediterranean for the past ten years. During that time we travelled to many Greek islands, The Algarve, Spain and Southern France. Originally we looked seriously at Northern Spain; however, after consideration of cost of homes, living and summer crowds (all very high in Spain) we decided to look at Greece because we loved the food and culture. We looked in Crete because we loved the size of the island, the mountains, the history and the ability to fly there year round.

We used the internet to find real estate companies in the west of Crete and set up appointments with representatives for three intense days of ‘looking’. We looked more land and houses than we thought possible. We did this for two long weekends over a six month period with every builder/real estate company. We found Ktimatoemporiki on the net. They were very responsive. We met executives of Ktimatoemporiki the second long weekend and what a change from the intense selling of the other companies!! They sat down with us and listened to what we were looking for in a home in Crete. We were vague in some areas so he showed us a variety of land and villas that day to help us determine, and him to understand, what we really wanted. This was really helpful. He only showed us property that met our requirements and we felt he was really looking for the right place for us, not just what he needed to sell!

Ktimatoemporiki's executives, ultimately found us a fantastic piece of land in Kokkino Chorio. It was better than we ever imagined. He helped us find a great lawyer (who we use now for everything) and a local architect and builder. We purchased the land in the fall and designed the villa over the net. We started building the following spring. As with most things in Greece, it is a different process, the business culture is so different that Northern European, and you have to be patient! Ktimatoemporiki were really helpful during this process. Whenever we had a question or felt unsure about anything, we emailed Ktimatoemporiki and they found us the answer…quickly! It was so reassuring to have someone there looking after our interests.

Over the next year we visited our building site and met with the consultants of Ktimatoemporiki. They always made sure things were going well and offered to help alleviate any concerns we had about the building, living in Crete, etc. At the end of the year we had a beautiful villa!

It’s been a year since villa was complete and every time we go there we can’t believe it is ours. We also are so thankful we had the help of Ktimatoemporiki, particularly Jacq and Brigita along the way. Helping us find what we really loved, not selling us something we didn’t want! Since then we have looked at property magazines and are pleased to find that we never would have the location and views elsewhere for the money we spent in Crete.

We love Crete…. The best part are the seasons.. the snow in the mountains and the land coming alive with the rain after a hot, dry summer.