Buying property in Spain is totally different from buying in the UK. Although it can seem a bit frightening, it is a much fairer system.

We can offer the services of English-speaking Spanish solicitors, tradesmen, currency exchange companies and mortgage companies. If there is anything else you specifically need, we will do our best to be of assistance.

Once you have seen the property you want to buy, you will need to open a Spanish bank account, if you haven’t got one already. This is quite a straight forward process. You will need your passport and have a small sum of money to put into the account.

The next thing you will need to do is engage the services of a solicitor. We always recommend you engage a solicitor for any property or land purchase. If you don’t speak Spanish, it is very important that you get a solicitor that speaks both English and Spanish. It is advisable for you to check what the normal conveyancing fees are before you go any further as the charges can vary from one solicitor to another. If extra work is needed, your solicitor should tell you up front what this is likely to cost.

Once you have done this you will need to pay a deposit. Usually this is 10% of the purchase price. It is usual for this deposit to be held by either the estate agent or the solicitor until the preliminary checks are made. At this point you will sign a deposit contract which will contain a completion date for the sale.

It is important you are sure you have the right property for you as once the deposit is paid, if you change your mind you will forfeit the deposit. However, if the vendor decides not to sell the property they have to pay the purchaser double the deposit amount back.

Although you can pay a deposit without your NIE (Spanish national insurance number) you will have to have one before completing the sale. This involves completion of a form called Solicitud de NIE (Numero de Identidad de Extranjero) and a visit to the Policia Nacional. You will also need 2 copies and the originals of your passport. Most offices can issue the NIE’s the same day, but it is best to get them at least a few days before your completion date just in case.

Your solicitor will then make the legal checks which include confirming that the person you are buying the house from is the legal owner, that the property is correctly registered in the land registry, that there are no outstanding debts held against it and that the square meterage for the house and any land are correct.

Once the checks are done the notary is booked. The notary is an official who ensures all legal matters are completed properly. You will attend the notary with the vendor and your solicitor, who will explain everything to you. He will be asked to sign a declaration stating you understand what you are signing. If you don’t use a solicitor you will need a designated translator. You will pay the balance for the house and you will be given your keys and the nota simple (temporary deeds). The house is then yours.

If you are coming to live in Spain it is important that you register with the Padron. This is the equivalent to the electoral roll and determines how much money is allocated for things like schools, roads, street lighting etc from the central government. It is in your interest to do this as the more people are on the padron the more is allocated to each town.

You can register by going to the town hall (ayuntamiento) and asking to be put on the padron. You will need your address and a copy of your passport. They will then take your details and give you a piece of paper with your padron details on. It really is that simple.

If you purchase a property through us, we will take you to get your NIE numbers once your deposit is paid and change your water and electricity over (if your solicitor hasn’t done it for you) free of charge.

Also, once you have bought your house we will give you useful telephone numbers to help you settle in. We can also provide you with the number of a translator if you need one. We give a full aftercare package that is second to none, so you are not abandoned once you have purchased your property.

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