Home Buying Guide Spain

The Five Steps To Your New Home

Our Real Estate Services

Our services cover all the nuances of buying or selling of a property in Spain. It is our job to guide you through the different steps in this process from start to finish, so you can fully understand the entire procedure – from finding your dream property and negotiating it’s price to the final sale. Since the laws and regulations regarding real estate in Spain are often different from those you may be accustomed to in your own country, we can assist and guide you along every step of the way, to experience a flawless transaction.


Step 1. Let’s Find Your Dream Home In Altea, Javea or Finestrat 


Finding the home that fits with your budget and lifestyle which is also a sound investment, can often be challenging. With over 27 year’s of experience in the property market, we are the right team to help you find your dream home, villa, or apartment on the Costa Blanca (White Coast). As we work in close connection with a select group of real estate agents, we are able to find you the property of your dreams in no time.

During our initial meeting, we try to get an idea of the kind of property and specifications you are looking for and we then start to search for the property that meets your requirements.


Step 2. The Contract





Once we find the right home for you at the Costa Blanca, we discuss the offer that we are prepared to make with the seller, as well as all the conditions of the sale. We contact the seller on your behalf and present him or her with the offer. Once an agreement is reached, a draft of the contract is prepared both in Spanish and in your native language.

The following information will be needed:  


  • The personal details of both the buyer and the seller: passports, civil status (including marriage scheme), profession, address, etc.
  • The purchase price and the terms of payment.
  • The property details and what is included or not in the sale of the property.
  • The final closing date for signing before the notary.
  • When the initial agreement to purchase is signed, a deposit amounting to 10% of the agreed purchase price must be paid. This will later be deducted from the final payment made at the signing before the notary.
  • The final closing date at the notary: only after the notary issues the Public Deed of Sale do the ownership rights transfer to the buyer.



Step 3. Property Research




In the time between the signing of the initial sale agreement and the closing day at the notary, we work with an independent office Inter Help Service, to do a thorough property search. We have had an excellent working arrangement with said office for more than 25 years.

They help us to ensure the following:


  • That the number of square meters listed on the deed are correct.
  • That there are no outstanding mortgages or debts attached to the property.
  • That there are no urban/municipal infractions pending payment in relationship with the property.
  • That all taxes such as IBI (property tax) and Basura (garbage tax) are paid in full, as well as all bills from the utility companies and the property owners’ community fees, if applicable.

Five Steps Buy Home Spain

Step 4. If You Need A Mortgage

If you need a mortgage, we will assist you with this so that it can be obtained from a Spanish bank.

The buyer must provide the following documents:


  • A valid passport or identification card for all buyers.
  • Home address and profession.
  • Marital status (single, married, or divorced). In the event that the buyer is married under a separate property scheme, we will need a legalised copy of the marriage contract and an official translation prepared by a legal translator, both of which must have an apostille (if necessary, the translation can be done here in Spain).
  • A Spanish bank account number.
  • NIE number (foreign alien identification number) issued in Spain. This can be obtained at the police station in Benidorm; if you need help with this, we can contact the Inter Help Service and they will accompany you through the procedure and help you with the paperwork. They can also register this number for you at the tax office.

For the NIE number, the following information will be needed:


  • The first names of both parents.
  • Two colour passport photos.
  • Marital status.
  • Address in your home country.
  • Address of the property you are going to buy.

The NIE number may take several months to process; thus, it is important to start as soon as possible when you are really interested in purchasing a property in Spain. Without this number, it is not possible to register the property in your name or pay the taxes involved.

Step 5. Notary, Land Registration and Costs


Before the official signing of the deed, the notary will request a title search from the Property Register in order to check the exact status of the property on the date of the sale.

At the notary, both the buyer and the seller will be required to identify themselves and they can only be represented by a third party through a power of attorney issued by a notary. The notary reads the purchase agreement with all the exact data, such as the land registry and property registration numbers, property tax payment status, as well as the form of payment to be used.

Usually, the agreed sum (minus the deposit) is then paid by handing over a certified bank check or a copy of the bank transfer. Possible outstanding costs, or costs for which the seller is liable, will be withheld.

Once the purchase deed has been signed, it must be registered in the land registry office. The notary will send a temporary notice by fax to the land registry on the same day as the signing, informing them that there has been a change of ownership. Within 30 days, the transfer tax or VAT and stamp duty must be paid. Within that period, the deed needs to be presented for final registration at the land registry.

If the property purchased is financed by a bank, the representative of the bank will go to the notary in order to sign the mortgage deed with the buyer. The bank will then take care of registering the purchase and the mortgage deed with the land registry. Normally, this is the same time when the buyer takes possession of the keys and the property. We advise that you register your new property right away with the property register. Inter Help Service can assist you with this procedure and arrange all the tax declarations in relationship with the purchase. Their fee is around 350 euros plus VAT.

From the time of the signing, all utility bills must be transferred from the name of the seller to the name of the buyer. Altea PremiumProperties will provide this service.

Hereby more information about the costs for the buyer and the seller.



Buyer’s costs:




  • The notary fees.
  • Costs regarding the registration of the property in the land registry.
  • 10% property transfer tax (I.T.P.) for the purchase of secondhand homes.
  • Fees related with registering the property.

If the property is a new construction or it is bought from a company, the buyer normally pays VAT. Depending on the purchase being made, the VAT can be 10% or 21%. In the event that VAT is applicable, there will be a stamp duty of 1.5%. We will guide you through all these matters and inform you accordingly.


Seller’s costs:





  • The seller pays a municipal tax called Plusvalia Tax. This tax is calculated by each municipality. It is based on the time the seller owned the property and the amount of increase in value for the land during time of ownership.
  • The local property tax (IBI) and the garbage tax.
  • Property owners’ community fees up to date of transfer of title, if applicable.
  • All utilities must be paid up to the date of transfer.
  • An energy efficiency certificate (EPC) must be presented.
  • If there is a mortgage on the property, this will have to be cancelled. This means that the seller will have to pay for the notary and registration fees associated with the deed of mortgage cancellation, as well as any possible bank fees.
  • In the event that the seller is a non-resident in Spain, a 3% withholding of the value in the deed will be transferred to the tax office (Hacienda). Within 4 months of the sale, the seller will have to calculate capital gains tax while deducting the 3% withholding. Altea Premium Properties will guide the seller in this process should assistance be required.
  • In the event that the seller is a resident and is above 65 years of age, is selling his/her main home, and has been a tax resident for at least 3 years, he/she will have no taxes to pay. If the seller is under 65 years of age, he/she is responsible for paying capital gains tax.
  • The Seller pays the agents’ commission and the VAT associated therewith, as well as covering the costs of the livability certificate (Cedula de Habitabilidad).
  • The Seller is to sell the property with all the square meters (both for the land and the home) registered, both in the land registry and the property registry. If this is not in order, the seller will have to undertake the necessary steps and costs to arrange this. Altea Premium Properties will guide the seller whenever necessary to take care of these matters.
  • The seller is to sell the property with all licenses in order, without any debts, without municipal infractions, etc. If this is not in order, Altea Premium Properties will guide the seller whenever necessary to take care of these matters.