1. What are the costs of buying a property?
- ITP (Impuesto sobre las Transmisiones Patrimoniales, transfer tax) – for re-sale properties: 8%
- IVA (VAT) – for new build properties: 10%
- AJD (Actos Jurídicos Documentados, stamp duty): 1.5%
- Notary: on a scale fixed by law (generally between 500-1200€)
- Legal fees (abogado/gestoría): approx. 1% (make sure to clarify before committing)
- Registro de la propiedad (property registry fees): approx. 400-650€
(The above prices are the rates applicable in Andalucía at the time of writing this article. Please consult a notary or solicitor for exact rates.)
2. What do you need to buy a property?
You need a NIE (Número de Identificación de Extranjero, similar to a UK National Insurance number) and a Spanish bank account (for paying charges related to the property, such as utility bills, community fees, IBI (Council Tax), etc.)
3. What is the buying process?
- Make a formal offer and appoint a solicitor (recommended) before giving a deposit of generally 10% and signing the “contrato privado de compraventa”/”contrato de arras” that sets out the agreed terms and conditions of the sale including the agreed purchase price and a date for final completion at a Notary. This deposit is non-refundable: if the purchaser defaults, he loses his deposit, if the vendor defaults, he must pay twice this amount back to the purchaser.
- Signing the “escritura” (purchase deed) at a Notary. The final agreed payment is made to the vendor, and the purchaser takes possession of the house. A copy of the deeds are given to the buyer or their legal representative by the Notary. The originals are sent to land registry to be registered. The registration process can take up to three months.