The Spanish Buying Process - Marbella Dream Living

The Spanish Buying Process

The Spanish Buying Process

The Spanish buying process for property sales is different than you would find in other countries, and it is important you are informed of the Spanish buying process before you purchase a property in Spain.

You can get this information from a lawyer (at a hefty cost!) your Estate Agent (if they are up to date on the latest charges) or you could simply read this free blog!

Marbella Dream Living works with independent Lawyers who keep us informed about charges and taxes on a daily basis so we can pass this information on to you.

You might be wondering how much taxes you will pay in Spain when buying a property, and how you could make sure your deposit payment is safe. Furthermore, the age old question is:

What is the actual buying cost when purchasing a property in Spain? 

This first question is answered quite simply:

Buying costs in Spain are at most a total of 12%  (14% with mortgage) of the buying price of the property

Buying a second hand property in Spain

if you purchase a second hand property in Spain you should be aware that there is a pre-reservation deposit required of 6000€.

The pre-reservation deposit ensures the property is taken off the market.

This deposit is sent to your lawyer (so not the owner of the property) who will hold on to the deposit until a “Private contract” has been agreed and signed. At this point you are asked to pay an initial 10% deposit (minus the 6000€ that you already paid).

Completion and handover of the property can take between 2 and 6 weeks. Upon completion you will pay the remaining 90% at the notary.


The taxes involved when buying a second hand property in Spain are:

  • Transfer Tax (ITU): Ranges from 8% or more depending of the value of the property
    • Property value: <400.000€ = 8%
    • Property value: 400.000€ – 700.000€ = 9%
    • Property value: 700.000€> = 10%
  • Lawyer fees: around 1 to 1,5% (depending on your lawyer)
  • Notary fees: around 1% (depending on the area you are buying)

Buying First Occupancy Properties in Spain

These properties are usually off-plan or renovated but never before occupied.

When buying an off-plan or a renovated new property, a pre-reservation deposit will be required to remove the property /unit off the market. In most cases this deposit will be paid to your acting lawyer.

In the rare case that a developer insists you pay this deposit to them direct, always consult with your lawyer that your deposit is secure.

A Pre-reservation deposit can range from 3000€ up to 10,000€.

Once the promotor is ready to start construction you are asked to pay another lump sum when signing the “Private contract”.

Using the guidelines of an off-plan promotion you will be required to follow the “Stage Payments” set by the promotor. The stage payments differ per development, but an example could be:

  • Example 1: 30% paid at private contract & 70% at completion
  • Example 2: 20% paid at private contract, 7,5% every 3 months in the first year, 50% at completion

Taxes on First occupancy Properties in Spain

You will not be required to pay any “Transfer Tax (ITU)”, since the property is new, and does not have to be transfered. However, instead you will pay VAT (IVA) of 10%.

You will also have to pay similar lawyer fees of around 1 / 1,5% and a notary fee of approx. 1%

For a more in-debt analysis of the process of buying an off-plan property in Spain, please click here. 

If you have any questions about the above or would like to consult an independent lawyer, please give us a call on +34 952 766 067.


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