An Interview with Michael Schwalbach,
Co-founder of Sandberg Estates, a Family-Based Real Estate Agency

Michael Schwalbach, the young co-founder behind Sandberg Estates, was born and raised in Mallorca. Together with his mother, Cecilia Sandberg, they established their family-based real estate business. Sandberg Estates is today one of the top independent real estate agencies in Mallorca. In addition to his professional success, Michael actively engages in charitable giving, making a positive impact on the lives of others.

Raised in Mallorca with a Swedish mother and a German father as a local kid from Calviá, how do you feel about the evolution of the area and the changes in Mallorca?

I am happy to see the growth of the island as it becomes more of a cosmopolitan city each year. Mallorca is becoming more of a place for all-year-round living and not just a seasonal destination. It is a more attractive place to live since I was a child, and especially for younger people.

How and why did you become a real estate professional for international clients?

Real estate has always interested me and is one of the largest industries and job sectors on the island. I was blessed to be brought up with 4 languages that I am pretty much native in:  English from school, Spanish from growing up here and Swedish and German from my parents. This helped open the doors to Real Estate and has without a doubt been a huge factor in where I have got to today.

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What would you say is the key to success in real estate at such a young age?

Working harder than the rest. The industry never stops, and you must always be on the ball to prevent losing certain deals or even clients. It is vital that you focus on things with a long-term perception rather than short-term. The Real Estate industry can be a very difficult one, with lots of work that can sometimes turn into nothing. It is important to keep going and think about the positives that can come from the negatives.

What does the word “family” mean to you and Sandberg Estates?

I consider “family” to be the people around you that are there for you. Our team is my family, it’s the people that I work with every day, and I look forward to seeing every single person each day too. Family is all about maintaining values and being able to enjoy time with people who are close to you. Our clients become family too and this really is at the center of everything we do.

Having created Sandberg Estates with your mother, how do you manage to maintain a family atmosphere at the workplace with all your team?

We are lucky that the family environment maintains itself in the way we are with one another, as we really are friends by choice. There is a great vibe between the team, we are there for each other, and this is the core of the company. We have weekly team meetings, and we spend time outside of the office together, not just as a whole team but we mix with one another and spend time by choice with one another out of the office too.

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If you weren't fully dedicated to real estate, what would you do instead?

In all honesty, I always wanted to get into acting or theatre. I studied in London at RADA when I was 20 years old; the UK lifestyle wasn’t well suited to me, so I decided to return to Mallorca. I hadn’t quite written it off at that point but when I started working in real estate, I knew that it was well suited to me and allowed me to live here on the island.

However, I probably could have been the next Tom Cruise (haha)!

Is there any other area in Spain or Europe that you enjoy spending time in apart from Mallorca?

I haven't travelled much to mainland Spain, but I love Madrid. I have friends that spend a lot of time there, so have got to know the city well. As I have family in Sweden, I used to spend the summers in Gothenburg. It is a beautiful city, especially when the weather is warmer over the summer months. There is a lot to see and do, and the Swedes are so friendly. I haven’t been in recent years, but it is a place I remember well and will always have fond memories of.

How and why did Sandberg Estates become a real estate company specialized in the Southwest of Mallorca?

Having grown up in Bendinat and having attended an International School nearby it was the area that I knew best and felt connected to, so, naturally, it’s where we started. Luckily for me, the Southwest Coast is also the most sought-after area for international second-home buyers.

How does Lionsgate Capital help your clients?

It is great to have trusted partners that we know we can send our clients to, knowing that they will be treated with the high standard we expect. The Lionsgate Capital team are real experts in Mortgage advice, and we know our clients obtain the best advice and service.

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One of the strongest points of Sandberg Estates is the marketing you do, what is the story behind the creation of such personalized videos of your listings?

We want people to get to know us and feel part of the family. The initial idea of the videos we were publishing was to show what Mallorca really has to offer, not only with the property you are able to acquire but the lifestyle it offers. Since then, we have also opened a little window into our day-to-day routine with the aim to let clients get to know the team as well as introducing our “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” series, getting to know interesting and influential people on the island such as Henri from Banana Clip group and the international artist Vivian Borsani. As a team, we are really motivated and excited to try new things and explore creative ideas. We try to keep ahead of the fast-paced and competitive industry, bringing current ideas and content to the Real Estates sector of the island. It is a fast-paced industry, and keeping up with it can be a challenge but it’s one we willingly accept, and we are not afraid of being the first to try new things!

How do you see the real estate market in Mallorca in the next 5 years?

Up, up and up! The property market in Mallorca is unique as it is rarely affected like the rest of the European property market. It has gone up significantly in the last few years with no signs of slowing down. Mallorca is becoming a very sought-after place to live with investments being made not only in property but with projects, hotel groups, restaurants, international shows, and our airport is becoming more international, most recently offering direct flights now to and from New York.

Property in Mallorca is a safe investment and with the right guidance and knowledge from the team, we can get you on the property ladder in no time.

What is your favourite Sunday plan in Mallorca?

The Mediterranean is so beautiful, there are an array of breathtaking beaches and some of the best boating opportunities. I would say something out on the water, whether it be out with my family and friends on a boat. Either that or a good round of golf. I enjoy golf, I find it relaxing and again we are so spoilt with many fantastic golf courses in Mallorca. I play with clients and/or friends, it’s a nice way to spend quality time with no distractions.


Interview by Juanita Casanas

Co-founder and President of Lionsgate Capital

Juanita's goal at Lionsgate Capital is to create unparalleled solutions for the most demanding clients and create value through service, making Lionsgate Capital the major player for financing in the Balearic Islands and mainland Spain.

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