I WISH TO PURCHASE IN COSTA DEL SOL BEING A FOREIGNER. FREQUENT QUESTIONS AND DOUBTS II.
In our first chaper we clarified the most common questions when a foreigner wishes to purchase a property in Spain. We know that purchasing a real estate property is not a difficult task, but it involves many other further legal and tax implications. We will try to clarify now the most common ones.
- Is it recommendable to use a conveyance solicitor?
It is the buyer’s decision to use a solicitor or not, but there are many reasons to hire the professional services of a Spanish solicitor specialised in real estate law. The solicitor knows better than anybody the local laws and taxes so it is highly recommended to contact one because he will make the purchase process smooth, trouble free and 100 % secure.
- What informaion do I have to get about the property before purchasing it?
Before buying a property in Spain, there are some basic checks and searches to be carried out: who is the legal owner; possible charges or mortgages on it; that there aren’t any debts regarding local taxes and utilities bills; etc.
The key point is to carry out searches in the local council and in the land registry to get updated information on the property and confirm that everything is correct and that it can be purchased without any problems. The solicitor is the right person to do these searches and confirm that the property is in good legal condition to be purchased.
In case the property belongs to an urbanization, it is essential that the community of owners confirms the property is up to date with the community rates. Otherwise, the buyer can be compeled to take over previous debts.
- Which documents do I need to purchase a property in Spain?
Buying a property in Spain is simple. The only documents requested are an original and valid (that is, not expired) passport or identity card, to confirm the identity of the buyer; and a NIE number (Tax Identification number for Foreigner), which can be obtained in the police offices in Spain. It is a quite easy procedure.
Please, be also aware that in order to transfer the necessary funds to pay the purchase price, it is necessary to have a Spanish bank account. Most of Law offices have a “clients account” for this purpose, so the buyer who uses a solicitor will only need a personal bank account after completing the purchase.
- Once the purchase is completed, do I have to do any further paperwork?
When the purchase has been completed in front of a Public Notary, it is necessary to pay the Transfer Taxes (8 % of the purchase price) within 30 days, and to take the title deeds to the land registry so the ownership is registered.
It is also necessary to change local taxes, water and electricity contracts, and community rates into the name of the buyer; as well as to order future payments by direct debit.
A solicitor will be able to arrange all these matters in a speedy way and without problems. Another good reason for hiring one when buying your property in Spain.