Buying property anywhere can be stressful – but it doesn’t have to be. Launched in 2011,
Ibiza Estates aims to make the whole process from start to finish and beyond an enjoyable experience. NATIV spoke to founder François Verhoeven about his love of the island, the company
ethos and, of course, the stunning properties.
As introductions to Ibiza go, François Verhoeven’s was pretty unique. Having rented a sailboat in Mallorca with some friends in 1997, he and his group decided to pop over to Ibiza. A few of the party sailed a dinghy to shore, hid it in a tree, hailed a taxi and asked the driver to take them to a club – which turned out to be Privilege! “When we came out at 7am and I looked at my friends we were smiling and saying ‘What the hell was that?’”. So began a love affair with the island that saw two visits a year, his marriage to his wife and, eventually, his own holiday home. From these seeds Ibiza Estates grew.
The process of buying the holiday house didn’t go as smoothly as Verhoeven would have liked, and he started thinking of ways to make the whole experience different. “In terms of progress and services I realized that in not knowing the language I was disadvantaged. I am an entrepreneur and I saw an opportunity.” With a successful background in events organization, Verhoeven recognized that he could bring the same entrepreneurial spirit to real estate. “I actually think the best business models are those that solve irritations, that solve problems that you might encounter. I took my experience as an event organizer and, thinking about organization and delivering exactly what you agreed to produce, thought: this can work in property.” In 2011 Ibiza Estates was launched, and has grown each year since then. Here is how it does things…
HOW TO BUILD A TEAM
Like any business, Ibiza Estates is not just about its creator: if you want to grow and be successful you need the right DNA. Its team are not just “sales” people, they are people people: emotionally involved. With guides and rental managers, concierges and even interior designers, the company has an ethos that seems simple but is hard to perfect: if everybody is happy and focused, success will follow. Make absolutely sure the client knows the team are there to guide them at every step, that they are fully on their side, and that they are neutral. “There is no pressure in the sense that, working like this, with this ethos, everybody knows exactly where they are,” Verhoeven says. “It is an honest, open team.” The team have tripled in size in four years , celebrating successes together – and, well, the fact that they have a bar in their beautifully designed office that feels more like a chic living room shows the work-hard/play-hard philosophy that drives them.
Key point: Ibiza Estates is not your traditional real estate broker guiding you in the process of buying a house. The company philosophy is about guiding the client through the whole process from first idea, to sale, and beyond, offering neutral guidance and advice. This unique approach sees initial meetings with clients in their own home or local office, conducted in their own language, ensuring a smooth, enjoyable experience. Clients set out their wishes, Ibiza Estates scans the market so all brokers and all offers on all platforms are available, and a long list of suitable properties is selected. Clients then filter this list down to a shortlist. After a viewing schedule is worked out, the client is accompanied on every single viewing and given independent, neutral advice. All of this comes with no charge. Once a property is selected Ibiza Estates helps negotiate the best conditions.
You’ve got your dream home, you are happy. The deal is done. Well, no. Not with Ibiza Estates. Aftercare is absolutely critical. “Ambassadors are created in the last metres,” Verhoeven says. Think of it like this: whatever you do in life it is the final memory that sticks with you. If that memory is negative, that is what you take away. This works in the same way with restaurants, with bars, with buying a car. If you have a good memory, you will have trust and loyalty. “Make people happy,” Verhoeven says. “Buying a holiday home is an experience they should never forget!” After the purchase, Ibiza Estates opens its extensive network of contacts to support clients: this means rental and booking management, furnishing and decoration; lawyers, architects, everything you need.
A GOLDEN RULE
“We have a ’death penalty’ across the whole company: do not give an answer if you do not really know it is true and might not be able to deliver,” Verhoeven says. “Just do not do this. Always, always just come back to them when you have actually found out. Don’t make promises in the moment you may not be able to deliver.”
THREE STEPS TO HEAVEN
With sale and rental properties across a range of price points, Ibiza Estates has homes
to suit most tastes. We looked through the keyholes of three of its most wanted.
1. Ses Torres Villa € 3,600,000
Form a picture of an Ibizan villa in your mind’s eye. This is what you saw, isn’t it? Just a stroll from Talamanca bay, Ses Torres has boho-chic by the bundle with an awesome glass-sided pool, your very own little nightclub, and a home gym.
2. Marina Botafoc Apartment € 1,350,000
If you’re looking for something in town, you want to be right here: the harbour and restaurants, the buzz, the bars. This stylish apartment is in a well-maintained complex with pool, gym and concierge, and has three bedrooms and an open-plan kitchen.
3. Roca Llisa € 17,500,000
Once you’ve picked your jaw off the floor, drink in this spectacular new-build offering 360° views of the sea and the countryside, eight bedrooms and eight bathrooms and… can we just say it’s a work of art?