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Buying an existing house or building your own

A good start is half the job.

Step 1: Choose a reliable local contact person.

Don't believe the first man you meet nor what you would like to believe!
Andalucia Real Estate acts as real estate adviser-agent-architect: this means that we do not work as a commercial agent, but rather as your ally in your quest for the right home.
With our help you can start house-hunting in a structured way while having access to the entire property market! Important is, that in order for us to be able to offer you our services for free, we first need to sign you up with our partners as our customer. If we don't, we lose our right to a commission and have to charge for our services.
If you want to buy a property, there are two very important things:

  • Obtaining a NIE number: Número de Identificación de Extranjeros. This is a tax number required for all foreigners living in Spain or residing more than 182 days per year stay in Spain. The NIE number is required for all commercial transactions (including registration of your property in the Property Registry, opening bank accounts, starting a business, application for a telephone line, gas and electricity and insurances in Spain!) and tax declarations. The NIE number can be obtained from main police offices with a foreigners' department (Comisaría de Policía - Oficina de Extranjeros). These you can find in all major cities. You can also ask your lawyer or gestor to do it for you, or we can help you with it.
  • Opening a bank account is the next move: what is common is to allow your lawyer to manage your account during your stay abroad. In this way, advances and down payments can be timely paid.

Step 2: The reservation contract

Step 3: The private contract

Step 4: Notarial transfer deed (escritura)

The deed (escritura) is usually signed within 3 months after the sale, depending on the type of property that you are buying and on whether you require a mortgage, which may delay the buying process significantly.
The task of the notary in Spain is limited to composing the deed and registration of the deed in the Property Registry. This is the reason why in Spain, it is necessary to get the additional services of a lawyer or gestor (administrative consultant), to ensure that the property is legal.

Costs for the buyer
A basic rule when buying property in Spain is that you will need an extra 9, max. 10% of the selling price to cover for all additional costs. In case you need a mortgage, then count on 10 to 11%.

  • 8% Transfer tax (Impuesto de Transmisiones Patrimoniales).
    This tax is always based on the deed price, ie the price declared.
  • 1% legal fees
    This fee is always based on the selling price as advertised on the internet, in magazines or at a real estate agent's office.
    You also have to add 18% VAT on top.
    (IVA = Impuesto sobre el Valor Añadido).
  • Notary fees, approx 0.25% of the deed price.
    These fees are variable and depend on the complexity of the deed. If for example there is a mortgage on the property, the fees will be higher.
  • Costs for registration in the Property Registry: approximately 0.15% of the deed price.
    These costs are usually slightly lower than the notary fees.

    Real estate agency costs are always included in the selling price. In practice, the owner of the property pays the commission to the agency.

    Practical example: Suppose you buy a house for € 300,000
    8% Transfer tax: 8% of € 300,000 = € 24,000

    1% Legal fees: 3000 € + 540 € (18% VAT) = € 3.540

    Notary fees approx 0.25% * of the deed price = € 750
    Registry: approx. 0.15% * of the deed price = € 450

    Total estimated costs* = € 28.740

* Note: In case you need a mortgage you pay 1 to 2% more because you will be charged notary fees for the registration of the mortgage and additionally, there are charges for registration in the Property Registry, taxes, administrative costs (gestor), assesment and dossier charges.


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