Introduction

 

There are a few specifics during the buying process in Spain that affect how it would work out:

If it´s intended to be a first residence, or not. Yearly taxes after the purchase depend on this point, first residences can have discounts.

  • If the buyer is a resident in the country, or plans to be (which means living in the country for more than 183 days per year). If not, some taxes will see an increase, and the logistics could be a bit more difficult. But we are here to make it easy.

  • The exact region and council where the property is. Most autonomous communities have their own laws, and local councils manage a great deal of tourist related laws, including renting.

The intention of this document is to be used as a summary of all things to be considered.

Before Buying

Before buying property, these are the main points that you should consider:

 

  • Property Status

  • Registry Status

  • Costs and taxes

  • Mortgage

  • Signing process

  • Certifications and documents to receive

Property Status

  • It´s important to make a visit to the property to check the status before the acquisition. The usual checks would apply in this case: faucets in working condition, water pressure, lights working, damp marks, etc…

 

  • If there is any fixing to be done by the seller before the transaction, it´s also highly advisable to make another visit a few days before sign off, to verify everything is in order and as expected.

 

  • If the property is furnished, totally or partially. An inventory of elements included in the purchase may also be advisable.

Registry Status

  • Before buying a property, it´s important to verify in the public registry that it´s lawfully built, and it does not have any legal proceedings against it.

 

  • It´s also important to check how different  the valor catastral (the registered value of the property)  is from the selling value, as it has direct influence in taxes both yearly and in the case of selling the property afterwards (this is how plusvalía is calculated).

 

  • Similarly, the square meter surface registered has a direct impact on IBI and other taxes.

Costs And Taxes (Purchase)

  • In general, the cost of a property purchase in Spain, considering taxes and legal fees, usually amounts around 13% of the selling price.

  • This means that, on a house with a selling price of 100.000 €, you should be expecting to pay around 115.000 €, all included.

  • On top of the selling price, you should expect to pay: VA / ITP tax (10%)

    • Stamp Duty (+- 1 %)

    • Registration Office (+- 1 % )

    • Notary Fees (+- 1 %)

    • Legal Fees

    • IAJD (0,5 %)

    • Utilities Change Of Ownership

  • You’ll notice that some of the costs associated with a sale are estimates, and are found out exactly just once the sale is finished, sometimes weeks later.

 

  • How it usually works is that after the sale, the notary runs all the final steps and calculations, and then reimburses any leftover amount.

 

  • This reimbursement usually happens between 1 and 3 months after the purchase, at the point in which you receive the definitive deed of ownership.

Mortgage and signing process

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  • Mortgages, if needed, would require a separate negotiation with banks. We will help you in that process

  • In general, Spanish banks tend to lend up to 70% of the appraisal value of the property to non-resident buyers.

  • The appraisal value of a property must be certified by an independent expert (“Perito”), who will apply his own fee to the process. This is considered to be part of the costs to set up the mortgage.

  • Be mindful that the appraisal value may well be quite different from the selling value (or the registered value!).

  • The signing process will always happen in presence of a Notary.

  • Be mindful that, if such translations are requested, they’ll usually incur a fee. And in case of any legal challenge, only the Spanish version would have legal validity unless the translation is made by a “sworn translator”, which is more expensive.

  •  If the property has a mortgage before the purchase, the notary would usually specify on the purchase documentation that the seller accepts the compromise to pay the mortgage in full before the selling. This is usually done the same day of the transaction, as a separate process, in presence of the notary.

Certifications and Documents To Receive

The following documentation should be handed over during the sale (and it would be advisable to verify it´s readily available beforehand):

  • Utilities receipts (water, power, gas) up-to-date.

  • IBI and other tax receipts.

  • Community charges certificate.

  • Cédula de Habitabilidad.

  • Energy Certification.

What we will do for you 

  • We locate properties according to your requirements through a network of associates, or searching the market on your behalf.

  • We accompany you on visits to the properties, or do them on your behalf, as many times as required.

  • We verify all data in the registry and clarify everything you need to know about the property.

  • Our team makes sure all process is due according to Spanish law, and all legal fees due to the purchase are also included.

  • We calculate an estimate of all costs for you beforehand.

  • We help you in all administrative steps required: updating registers, changing utilities ownership, opening a bank account in Spain, obtaining mortgage...

  • We can also put you in touch with any professional you may require

  • You will only have to pay extra when a third party would be involved (i.e. notary stamp fees).

Official References