Owning a Winter Home

With the long winter here in Calgary and the recent snow storm that rolled through in the past week it got me poking around online at potential real estate to own somewhere warmer. Ideally somewhere with great internet, cheap houses where it would be possible to hold up for a few months during the winter.

I started by looking at places in Greece, because a friend was vacationing there at the time and I was jealous of his shorts and t-shirt photos on Facebook.  There were a couple of places well out on the greek islands where you can buy a place reasonably cheaply..  Then I looked at their internet speeds on http://www.netindex.com/download/allcountries/  Greece ranks pretty low on the broadband speed so from a practical perspective it’s not in the running for a winter home location if I intend to keep working.

That internet speed report pointed me towards Spain.  Spain would have a moderate climate in winter, and I know they have some massive over development in real estate that would make things super cheap there.  I was not disappointed.  Check out this brand new villa for just 100,000 euro:



If you head further inland into Spain things can get even less expensive.  The problem is I don’t now spanish and it would take a while to learn. However, France also has great internet speeds…

It’s a bit harder to find cheap real estate in France.  The south of France is pricey, the land in wine country is all bought up and producing vineyards.  Anything around the big cities is obviously expensive.  Still, it is possible to find some nice properties in some out of the way regions.  This small 2 bedroom cottage on 1/2 acre of river front property is an hour outside of Calais in Northern France and is also 100,000 euro:


Of course it’s nice to dream about having an overseas property to escape the Canadian winters. It’s quite another thing to have the flexibility and money to make it practical… Maybe one of these days.