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- Once you have found your property with a registered Real Estate Agency*, paid the initial holding fee to effectively block the sale, and have agreed a date for completion then it is usual to draw up a private sales contract between the vendor and the purchaser. You do not need a legal/financial adviser to do this but it is advisable. To be valid the contract must be signed by both parties on all pages and written in Spanish (and usually with an English translation) to be understood. * A professional registered estate agent will be your security during the process of the purchase, acting as negotiator, he or she will be available to offer you the best value for money and to recommend a suitable local lawyer should you desire.
- The contract should require that the property is legally registered before the Municipal authorities and that the vendor supply all the corresponding certificates.
- Check that the property is free from debts, rental or leasing agreements. Many country and village properties are inherited and have no registered title deed and will therefore not be eligible for a mortgage. However providing all the necessary certificates are supplied then it is possible to proceed to public title deeds before the Notary.
Public Title Deeds are the most important part of the sale, and must be carried out before the Public Notary. This is the best guarantee of equity for both parties who appear (either in person or by proxy – power of attorney) before the Notary with all the appropriate accrediting documents.
Once the title deeds are signed you have 30 days in which to pay the 7% IVA (stamp duty transmission taxes) of the declared purchase price.
Once the taxes are paid then the title deeds are submitted to the Land Registry. He or she is the guarantee and invigilator of the rights of both parties and is responsible for determining the legal validity of the title deed before the property can be inscribed in the public register in the purchaser’s name.
The purchase should also be notified to the Land Survey Office (Catastro) and the municipal authority to liquidate the plus valia (capital gains) and arrange payment for rates, water and refuge collection – usually by direct debit (domiciliación bancaria).
In certain cases foreign property owners in Spain, without fixed residence in Spain, must pay another annual tax for assets in Spain.
Generally purchasing a property in Spain is straightforward... it can be more complicated when the vending party involves many relatives.
For hassle-free purchasing then it is well worth investing in registered professional legal services to guarantee the title deeds are really yours.
For information in properties in the Costa Tropical area, please contact Tropicana Properties
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