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Buying Property in Spain

The buying process in Spain can move quickly and conclude within 1 month, so understanding the required steps can ensure the transaction goes as efficiently as possible:

Buying property in Spain -

The process

Currency required to purchase: Euros (EUR)

Overview of Costs
Incurred by
Property Transfer Tax
6 - 10%
Notary Fee
< 0.5%
Buyer & Seller
Registration Fee
< 0.2%
Real Estate Agent's Fees
2 - 3%
The process of buying a property in Spain is relatively straightforward, but an International buyer must have registered for a unique identification number known as an NIE number, to go ahead with the process and track all of the legal and financial activities involved, such as opening a bank account, or applying for a mortgage.
An application for an NIE number can be submitted whilst visiting or living in Spain, which commonly takes place at the local Police Station, which is set up to accommodate foreign documentation. Once submitted, the application process typically takes 3 weeks before the NIE numbers are provided.
An offer can be placed at any time and if this is accepted, a holding deposit of usually around €3,000 can be placed to take the property off the market. Then the buyer and seller will sign a preliminary contract (contrato privado de compravento) at which point a deposit of typically 10% of the purchase price is placed. Buyers are often advised to check the property deeds for outstanding mortgages, as in Spain, debts are charged against a property and if there is any outstanding loan, this would be passed on to the new owner.
After the deposit has been placed, the buyer will then arrange any mortgage that is required and the contract of sale (escritura de compravento) will then be arranged by the appointed notary, which can take around 2-3 weeks. The contract is then signed by both parties in the presence of the notary and at this point, the remaining balance for the sale is paid, along with any outstanding taxes and costs.

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