Following the legal system can be frustrating as there is no guarantee that you will win your case and after 18 or 24 months to get a hearing, the squatter may get possession for a longer term.

Bringing lots of criticism of legal approach and the courts.

Another scam is to change the locks of empty apartments, then sell the keys for 1,000s of  euros to impoverished people who struggle to pay a market rent - a group that has grown in size since the start of the pandemic.

"Most people buying the keys do so, knowing that the seller is not the owner of the property," They buy the keys knowing the law is soft, the legal system is collapsed, and they're going to be able to stay at least one or two years and some courts have given squatters protection up to 21 years with very young children.

But genuine people looking to rent, can be conned into paying monthly or weekly rent to crooks who have taken possession of the property.

As the law goes, any violence, damage or threats, will have you, even as owner, in front of the courts and you can end up in jail.  It is not uncommon for the okupas/ squatters to call the police and denounce you.  Three denounces in Spain and you can be deported even as a frustrated and legal property owner.

You have to pay all the bills or this can cause you further issues and legal costs.

Squatters may cause thousands of euros worth of damage and are more likely to do this if they are offended and you have a very difficult time trying to prove they caused the damage adding to the frustration and costs.

Its complex and it is not like other European states, many judges are left leaning and will side with the criminals.

Extortion in 1% or 2% of the cases he handles where landlords have unwanted residents making eviction dangerous and difficult. This is definitely becoming more common and on the increase, says property lawyer Santi Ventalló.

The legal system isn't working, so owners are paying squatters to get out immediately.
Santi Ventalló
Property lawyer

"I think this is okupación 2.0," something people need to be aware and take precautions.

And the reason for that is because the courts take so long to act up to 24 months and no quarantee you will even get possession after that.

It is clear that many of the 'security companies' are involved in the scam and foreigners can be scammed over and over on the same property.

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