Who we are
Ohlsson Properties International was established for selling holiday homes in the Cape Verde Islands. It was established in 2006 (although the owner, Steffan Ohlsson had been a sole trader since 2005) and covered all of the islands and sold all freehold property such as apartments, villas, hotel rooms, shops, offices and plots of land.
Our aim is to protect buyers during the buying process by giving them access to the best lawyers accompanied by the right advice. We ‘tell it as it is’ regarding the property you are looking at giving the positive and negative of the property to let you make your choice with the most decision.
- Small hotels
Our aim is to take buyers through the process step by step making it straightforward and stress free.
We are based in the UK and in Cape Verde.
I ventured into buying property after taking my first job teaching in Peterborough. I rented a place from a friend of mine called and we both started buying properties to rent out. We shared a house together for over four years and we had amassed a sizeable portfolio between us.
However, due to family reasons I had to leave Peterborough and move back to Swansea (230 miles away). It was during this time that I met a long lost Aunty of mine who told me to look at Tenerife as a place to buy and sell property. She was a retired property developer who had been living out there for over 30 years. Once everything was ok with my family, I checked out Tenerife and decided that this was an opportunity worth pursuing.
I went to work for an Estate Agency that became the largest in the Canaries at the time. I sold all types of property from low priced apartments to multi-million euro villas. The experience was fantastic. It gave me an in-depth perspective what overseas buyers were looking for and it was a fantastic learning experience.
However in late 2004, the Cape Verde Islands catapulted onto the international property market as the hottest new destination for investors. The company I worked for wanted me to go there to open an office for them, however when they would not pay for me to relocate and for my time to set the office up for them, I decided to leave and open on my own.
I opened an office in Sal shortly after arriving on the island and it had gone so well that within a year I had opened an office on Sao Vicente island. While on Sao Vicente, I began developing luxury villas as holiday homes and I successfully built a number of them before the crisis of 2008 arrived.
The outcome of the financial crisis is well known, and it decimated the holiday home market for many years as people held on to their money in the wake of global financial insecurity.
Like the property market in most of Europe, the Cape Verde property market underwent a significant price correction.
If there was an upside to the impact of the crisis on Cape Verde, it was that properties were now at very low prices. These bargain properties kick started the market back into action.
In late 2012, my family and I had decided to move to the UK to develop my company in the UK. I had met my wife, a Cape Verdean girl from Sao Vicente island, and started a family while on the islands. However the move was made to benefit all of us and for me to be closer to UK holiday home seekers and investors.
Since November 2015, the Cape Verde property market has seen a significant rise in enquiries and property sales. More confidence in the overseas property market combined with the instabilities of the Middle East, has brought more tourists to Cape Verde who are looking for a safe, sunshine destination. The market is clearly showing signs that a recovery is underway and Ohlsson Properties is well positioned both in the UK and Cape Verde to assist any prospective buyer to find a holiday home.
Case Study of Buying Overseas with Ohlsson Properties
Kevin Barry’s Story
Kevin Barry and his family, from Ireland, were looking to invest in a country with an all year around warm climate. Cape Verde ticked the box for them. It was less than 6 hours flight, no jet lag and a climate with an average temperature of 25 degrees. They were looking for a 2 or 3 bed apartment in a good quality resort with a communal swimming pool. They wanted it for their own personal use and something they could pass on to their children. Here’s what Kevin had to say about his experience with us;
I contacted Steffan before going over and we had a long telephone conversation about what I was looking for. Steffan gave me a lot of confidence to buy there as, not only is he an owner himself, but he lived there for many years. We focused on the resorts, as I wanted to have an apartment with a pool. He sent me some property details and we had another telephone conversation about which I would like to view.
Steffan went through the buying process with me and advised me that the most difficult part of the process was deciding which apartment I wanted. He told me that he would guide me through the rest of the process.
Steffan prepared the property information for me and I went out to view. While Steffan is based in the UK, he has staff in Cape Verde and they met with me and did the viewings we had identified. I looked at a few resorts including Tortuga Beach Resort, Dunas Beach Resort Paradise Beach Resort, Vila Verde and Porto Antigo.
While all of the resorts were good, I preferred Vila Verde as it was a very large apartment, well designed and it had a communal pool and children’s play area. I also liked the fact that the resort was finished. I could see that this would be ideal for my family and I.
Once I had chosen the apartment, Steffan went about organising everything for me. The next day, one of his staff took me to the Bank and I opened a bank account and I was taken to see a lawyer later that afternoon. I did my power of attorney for the lawyer and all that was left to do was transfer the money to the lawyer for him to complete the deal. It was as straightforward as that.
We have a lovely home in Cape Verde and we have had great holidays there with all of the family with us.
A year after buying the apartment, I went back to Sal for a holiday and bought a plot of land from Steffan, which I have again invested for my children and grandchildren.
My experience of buying properties in Cape Verde has been good and I would recommend Ohlsson Properties to anyone who is looking to buy.
Kevin Barry, Ireland