We advise you to use an Agent who has a permanent Office in the
area. They will be there to help you with any queries when you
are in Spain, now and in the future.
are many Agents who would like to sell you a property, just make
sure that you get a receipt for any monies handed over to a sale
We do not handle contracts or funds as a general rule, we pass
all copy deeds to our Lawyer as soon as a reservation fee is
paid. In the case of a new home, the contract is checked by the
Lawyer to see if all is correct.
Law also requires, that three days before the new deeds are
signed a 'Nota Simple' must be requested by the Notary, who
checks that there are no debts and witnesses the signing of the
new deeds by both the Vendor and Buyer.
Many people find that it is inconvenient to come back to Spain
to sign the deeds. Perhaps they are working or they simply don't
want to pay the expenses to be present at the Notary's Office
for one morning. The solution is a 'Poder' or Power of Attorney
to the Lawyer.
Poder can be arranged while you are here in Spain or via a
Lawyer in the U.K.
If all the paperwork is correctly prepared, buying a house in
Spain is normally trouble free. It pays to pay professionals
to assist you with your property purchase.
both a new and resale home approx. 10% of the Sale Price is
needed to pay for the following: Search fees at the Registry (to
check legality and for debts.) 7% Tax on the value of the deeds
(7% I.V.A. on a new home)
fees - we always advise the use a Lawyer to handle the paperwork
and to ensure interests are protected. The fee also covers the
remainder of the year's fiscal advisory fee to help connect up
to the services in your name, i.e. water, rates, etc. plus any
help you need - buying a car, residencia, etc.
fee - The Notary is an independent professional whose job is to
see that all contracts and deeds are correctly raised and also
instigates a search before the deeds are signed. Local Taxes,
Electricity and Water meters on new property.
is a guide to property purchase on the Costa Blanca.
It is a guide to acquaint you with the Spanish
property system - it is NOT legal advice!
Our strong recommendation is that you seek legal
advice at ALL stages of any purchase &, by so
doing, protect your own interests at all times!
a Fiscal representative i.e a solicitor (abogado in
it is not totally necessary to have a solicitor when
purchasing a house in Spain, it is highly recommended.
They will be able to check out any outstanding debts
which exist on the property as well as help with
contracts, wills and NIE numbers. You are free
to appoint a solicitor of your choice, or if you
prefer we can recommend one.
number(Numero de Identificacion de Extranjeros).
is essential to have an NIE number for any financial
dealings you may have in Spain. This is a simple, but
sometimes lengthy process which involves filling in a
form with your solicitor, you also need to
supply a colour ‘passport’ photo, a
photocopy of your passport and your passport, the
solicitor will then obtain your NIE number from the
local police station.. The NIE number can take
anything from 1 week to 6 weeks to be obtained and our
advice is to apply for one as soon after you arrive in
Spain as possible. The price for this is generally
included in the fee for the conveyancing however, if
you wish to apply for one earlier the fee is normally
around 55 Euros.
it is not a necessity to have a Spanish Bank Account
to purchase a property in Spain we strongly recommend
it. We can help you to open an account at the
bank of your choice. The cost of opening a bank
account for ‘non-residents’ is around £10 for the
can choose to apply for a mortgage in Spain or from
the UK. Mortgage rates in Spain tend to be lower
than those in the UK currently around 5%.
for a mortgage in Spain is a straight forward process,
as in the UK. You will need to prove that you
have an income or sufficient funds to pay the
mortgage. The level of mortgage offered is
directly dependent on your financial status and also
the declared value of the property you wish to
are generally 2 levels of mortgage offered, one for
residents and one for non-residents. For non-residents
the mortgage offered is generally around 60% of the
declared value, for residents it is usually around 80%
of the declared value of the property.
you have decided on the property you wish to purchase
and the terms and conditions have been negotiated with
the vendor then a deposit of 10% of the purchase price
is required to secure the property. This acts as
your official confirmation that you intend to proceed
with the purchase of that property. The remaining 90%
is payable on the signing of the title deeds before
you are purchasing a new construction then it
is usual for the constructor to ask for stage payments
to be made on the property. These will vary dependent
on the individual constructor.
the case a new building, the Option Contract reserves
the plot of your choice allowing 30 days to carry out
the necessary searches, after which the Main Contract
is signed. This would state the payment structure at
the different stages of construction. The Main
Contract is the document that protects the purchaser´s
legal status to the property. It clearly lays out both
the purchaser's and the vendor's (in this case, the
developer) contractual obligations and
In the case of
a resale or ready-built property this is called an
Option Contract or Reservation Contract. It acts as a
signed receipt for the deposit and is normally valid
for 30 days, or longer by agreement with both parties.
Once the agreed time limit has passed the Title Deed (Escritura)
is signed by both parties before a Notary. If it is
difficult for either party to attend it is quite in
order for them to sign a Power of Attorney enabling
either the Agent or their Lawyer to sign on their
Contract has conditions which protect both the
purchaser and the vendor. Should the purchaser decide
to withdraw from the sale, his deposit would be
forfeited in favour of the vendor. However, should
anything arise in the conveyancing, to dispute the
legality of the property, the purchaser will have the
option of cancelling the contract and the deposit will
solicitor you appoint will carry out all necessary
searches on the property; to ensure that it is owned
by the vendor, it has planning permission, there are
no outstanding debts or charges on the property, and
other legal encumbrances.
the searches on the property are satisfactorily
completed and the deposit has been paid in accordance
with the terms and conditions of the contract, then,
as previously stated, the title deeds are signed by
both the buyer and the seller before the Notary.
Upon final or
main payment, in the case of a resale property, the
vendors together with the purchasers or their
representative will sign over ownership of the
property before the Notary. This document is known as
signed document is kept by the Notary and he will
issue a first legalised copy which he signs and
stamps. This is then sent to the Land Registry where
it is registered in the purchasers´ name, “free of
all charges and encumbrances”. Some time later the
deeds are ready for collection fully legalised. Should
these deeds ever be lost or misplaced, the Notary will
issue a second legalised copy. The Transfer Tax, in
the case of a resale property, will be paid at the
time of signing the Escritura.
must not be confused with Notaries. The Notary (Notaria)
is a solicitor appointed by the Spanish government to
witness the signing of all legal public documents
before their inscription in the property registry. In
this case the title deeds (escritoria in Spain) of the
property. He receives the Transfer Tax
(applicable only to resale properties) on behalf of
Hacienda (the Spanish Tax Authorities). He
represents both the buyer and the seller.
Notary fees are around 2% of the purchase price of the
property and must be paid at the time of the signing
of the deeds. The Original signed document is retained
by the Notary who will apply for a formal change in
the land registry. The purchaser will receive an
initial legal copy of the title deed which is signed
and stamped by the Notary. The official title deed can
take a while to be processed and until then this is
your official proof of ownership and must be kept in a
Registry (Registro de la Propiedad)
Registry Office is where all Escrituras are
registered. All local Land Searches are carried out
here and any charges or encumbrances relating to the
property will be registered here. Registry fees vary
according to the Land Registry. The charges are
similar to that of a Notary and will seldom exceed 500
should definitely allow for a sum of around 10% of the
price of the property to cover payment of purchasing
fees such as land registry fees, notary fees, legal
fees and taxes.
(IVA in Spain)
VAT is known as
IVA in Spain and is applicable to the sale of all new
different ratings which are as follows:
Plot only 16%
VAT, Plot with construction 7% VAT (assuming that the
landowner and the developer are one and the same), new
ready-built properties 7% VAT
properties are not subject to VAT
Plus Valia is a
local tax calculated as a percentage of the difference
in the increased value of the property from when it
was last sold. The calculation is based on the
Rateable Value (not on the real value) of the property
and is a one off payment charged when property changes
hands and due within a few months of purchase.
Each Town Hall
defines the percentage and it varies according to
municipality. Not all Town Halls enforce Plus Valia.
Normally the vendor accepts responsibility for the
payment of this tax
property bears a 7% Transfer Tax but is exempt from
VAT. The Transfer Tax is paid to the Notary at the
time that final contracts are signed. The Notary
receives these funds on behalf of Hacienda. (Transfer
Tax is not paid on new property although a duty of
0.5% is imposed when a newly built is declared on a
is not a tax that purchasers need to pay at the moment
of purchase, it is nevertheless a tax that they should
be aware of. This tax is generally paid by
the owner when they sell the property. The tax is
currently 7% of the declared value of the
Gains Tax will be calculated and the vendor will
either have to make up or claim the difference from
the 5% deposited. If overpayment has been made,
Hacienda is obliged to return the difference to the
vendor within 6 months.
The rate of tax
is 35% of the gain made although a reduction is made
if the vendor has owned the property for more than 2
years. If the property has not changed ownership for
more than 10 years, any gain will be exempt from tax.
However, up to a period of 20 years of ownership, the
5% retention will remain as an enforcement by Hacienda
so that it may ensure that the non-resident has
complied with his tax obligations whilst in Spain.
tax is calculated on the increase in the value of the
land from when it was last sold. The calculation
is based on the ratable value of the property and is a
on Rental income
and Ireland have a double taxation treaty with Spain.
The standard rate of tax in Spain is 25% and is paid
on the declared income from the property. The
minimum declaration is 2% of the value of the
property. The rental income must also be declared to
the inspector of taxes in Britain or Ireland. You can
obtain a tax clearance certificate from the Spanish
tax authorities which is then passed to the inspector
of taxes in your country, this can be obtained by your
solicitor. You will be asked to pay full tax on
the property in Ireland but the 25% already paid in
Spain will be refunded. It has been law since
April 1998 that residents of the Irish Republic
declare all foreign assets.
is like the old English rates system and is based on
the declared value of the property. The average price
paid is well below UK Council Tax levels being around
140 to 200 Euros per year.
are payable yearly and the average price is around 130
Euros per year. These are paid in respect of services
ie. Street lighting, refuse collection, police.
your property has a mains supply then there is a
standard charge for water which is approximately 12
Euros payable every 3 months. The charges for
consumption are in addition to this.
you have a supply from a balsa, underground store,
then the fees are dependent on consumption and are
payable when the water is delivered.
is very dependent on how much you consume, there is a
standard charge of around 12 Euros payable every 2
months and then a charge for consumption in addition
standard charge for a telephone line installation from
Telephonica is around 180 Euros. The line rental and
call charges are then payable every 2 months and are
very similar to the BT rates.
a home in Costa Blanca Spain plus buying a home in alicante,
torrevieja, guadamar, elche, benidorm, campello, altea, calpe,
moraira, jalon, javea, benissa, benissa, oliva, gandia or buying a
house in Costa Blanca Spain plus buying a house in alicante,
torrevieja, guadamar, elche, benidorm, campello, altea, calpe,
moraira, jalon, javea, benissa, benissa, oliva, gandia
to commonly asked questions
Is it possible to
purchase a property from overseas?
having returned home, you then wish to make an offer
on a property you have seen we can put your offer to
the owner of the property. Once it is accepted
we can arrange for the contract to be sent to you or
your solicitor by fax or courier. You will need to
sign the contract and transfer the deposit before your
offer is officially accepted.
can I be confident that everything is progressing to
plan once I return to the UK?
have a vested interest in your purchase so you can
feel totally confident that we will be monitoring the
progress of your property purchase. In the case
of new constructions we will be ensuring that the
stages are going ahead as planned, and, in the case of
re-sale property we will be ensuring that, once the
property has been checked for encumbrances & the
searches completed by the solicitor, the signing of
the title deeds can take place as soon as possible. It
is our intention to keep you well informed at every
if I change my mind on a property?
you have signed a contract for the property and paid a
deposit then this is considered an official intent to
purchase the property. Obviously,
it is therefore extremely important that you are
absolutely certain that this is the property you wish
to purchase and that you do not feel under any
pressure to sign the contract.
If you do feel pressured - do not go ahead
- there will be other properties in the future.
Property purchase anywhere is an
important decision to make & it is important to
make the right decision.
if I am unable to attend the Notary to sign the title
is quite common to give your solicitor or ourselves
Power of Attorney in order that the title deeds can be
signed on your behalf. You will need to have
transferred the final balance for the property
plus taxes to whoever has Power of Attorney prior to
the signing of the title deeds.
long will it be between signing the contract and
is dependant on the outcome of the searches made by
the solicitor (abogado) and the process can
take anywhere between 1 week and 4 weeks.
happens to my deposit if the searches are returned
for whatever reason the searches are returned
unsatisfactory, you will
receive your deposit back in full. It
is for this reason that the initial deposit is held
normally by the abogado & not paid immediately to
I have a choice of solicitor when I purchase a
the choice is entirely yours. You are free to use a
solicitor of your choice or we can recommend one in
the local area or you may choose to use the solicitor
associated with the Costa Blanca Homes Direct Property Sales
if I decide to purchase a 'new construction'
guarded regarding "Reservation agreements"
& have them checked out by your legal advisor
before committing your signature to the document.
When you buy from a developer, and even on other
occasions since it is not unknown for some estate
agents to use this practise, buyers may be asked to
sign a "document of reservation", or some
similar description, and make an accompanying payment.
documents vary enormously in their quality, nature,
wording, effect, and legal consequence. Most commonly,
they represent a mechanism by which the vendor or his
agent attempts to "close" a sale and bind
the purchaser into continuing by means of taking a
"reservation fee" or payment of sufficient
size to hurt the purchaser if he desists.
without exception, such documents are entirely
preliminary to the contract procedures outlined above.
Whilst reputable developers can usually be excepted
from the following statement, it is not uncommon in
documents of this nature that the intending purchaser
receives scant, if any, protection of his legal
position and his money.
is not unusual for a purchaser to buy a property
"off-plan" from a developer.
"Off-Plan" is a property not yet built that
may or may not be in the process of being built.
such cases, there will more than likely be an initial
reservation agreement requiring a nominal payment,
leading within a very short space of time to the
signature of a private contract accompanied by the
initial contract payment.
initial payment usually represents the first of a
series of payments on the contract (and when dealing
with reputable developers the reservation payment is
normally taken into account and deducted there from).
balance of payments will be due according to a
schedule contained within the contract and (be
aware) any default will often lead to loss
of a substantial percentage, up
to 100%, of payments made to date.
payment will coincide with completion and handover of
the property and with elevation of the private
contract to escritura pública.
is a feature of such staged payment development
contracts that the developer is required by law to
provide a bank guarantee to the purchaser in respect
of all his payments made successively during the term
of the contract, in order to secure the financial
position of the purchaser in the event of default of
our advice would be: see
your legal advisor before committing your signature to
such a document. Act as you would act if
you were conducting your business in the UK!
Care & Form E111 in Spain
Form E111 -
always travel with this document in your possession!
You can claim back most of your treatment and
medication costs if you fall ill or have an accident
in the EEA regions of Europe.... as long as you
carry a Form E111, which is available free from main
Post Office branches throughout the UK.
Form E111 is a document which entitles the holder to
free or reduced cost emergency medical treatment
anywhere in the European Economic Area (EEA).
If you or anyone in your family are unlucky enough to
be taken ill or have an accident during a trip to
Europe, you need only present your Form E111 to the
hospital or doctor who is treating you. This will
entitle you to the same treatment as residents of the
country you're visiting.
Please note that Form E111 is not a substitute for
Are you eligible?
You're eligible to use Form E111 if you reside in the
UK and you're a national of the UK, a national of any
EEA country or a stateless person or refugee
Form E111 will cover you, your spouse and dependent
children up to the age of sixteen, or nineteen if they
are still in full time education. It also covers
unmarried partners with children. If your
children are not covered then they can make an
application for their own Form E111
What treatment is covered?
state-provided emergency treatment is covered. You
generally won't be covered for private treatment.
to get Form E111
Ask for a 'Health Advice for Travellers' booklet which
you will find available at any main Post Office
branch. Complete the details on the application form
and the E111 itself and get the forms signed and
stamped at the Post Office branch.
Or you can call 0800 555777 and request a form.
How long does my E111 last?
Your Form E111 is valid for as long as you remain a UK
resident. Only reapply if you use it to claim for
treatment and it isn't returned, or if you lose it.
a photocopy of your E111 with the original. Some
countries may keep the photocopy if you receive
treatment. Other countries may keep the original.
information on countries where your E111 is valid is
contained in the leaflet, 'Health Advice for
Travellers', which is available from main Post Office
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