ITV may probe Costa scams

ITV is rumoured to be making a documentary exposing financial scams on the Spanish Costas, as industry experts warn the next big scandal could be looming.

Tonight with Trevor McDonald is believed to be planning a visit to the Costa del Sol next month to look at the financial scandals afflicting the Spanish Costas.

This news comes after reports that a British man scammed thousands of euros each month by supplying fake mortgages.

Ron Howell, director of British Overseas Mortgage Company, says Brits often don’t carry out proper checks when buying abroad as they would in England because they feel in a holiday mood.

He says: “There are a lot of scams in Spain but there needn’t be. There is no reason for anybody to get caught out. When people buy property abroad they forget they must carry out the same checks they do in the UK. People try to take short cuts to save money.”

But he warns that the biggest problem facing borrowers buying homes abroad is being able to find tenants.

He says: “There are thousands of empty apartments in Spain that have been bought off-plan. Buyers can’t find tenants to fill them to make their mortgage repayments.”

Gwilym Rhys-Jones, adviser at the Costa del Sol Action Group, has been contacted by ITV and is looking for victims whose Marbella properties have been constructed on the basis of planning permission granted illegally and are therefore facing the prospect of demolition.

ITV was unavailable for comment.