1. Steps for purchasing property for non-Spanish clients
1.1 Once you have decided on the property you’d like to purchase, you must pay a total of 3,000€ to make the reservation. By paying this amount, you ensure that the property is taken off the market by the agency for a maximum period of two weeks. During this period, the deposit agreement is drawn up.
1.2 If you do not have one already, you must acquire a foreign identity number; Número de Identidad de Extranjeros (NIE). You can request one from the police station closest to the address of the property you are purchasing or where you intend to live in Spain. In Barcelona, you can go to the office of the Brigada Provincial de Extranjería y Fronteras at Passeig de Sant Joan de Borbó 189, 08037, Barcelona.
1.3 In order to acquire a NIE number, you must present the following documentation:
- The EX15 form, filled out but not signed.
- A copy of the documentation which supports the grounds for a NIE request (unless you are a citizen of the EU, in which case this step is not necessary): the deposit agreement, a signed document from the agency which certifies the deposit payment.
- Original passport (or identity card if from the EU) and a photocopy.
It usually takes around 3-5 weeks to obtain a NIE
It is important NOT to be unlawfully present in Spain in order to continue with the property purchase.
2. Deposit agreement and contract of sale
2.1 The buyer must pay 10% of the total property price (the 3,000€ prepayment will be discounted from this amount). Penalty clauses will be present in the deposit agreement, which outline the owner’s agreement to sell the property. Should this agreement not be fulfilled, the owner must pay the buyer double the deposit. If the buyer withdraws from the purchase, the deposit will be lost.
2.2 The final date of sale will be indicated in the document (each case is different, depending on what is previously agreed between the vendor and buyer, but the average date is usually within two months of signing the agreement).
2.3 The buyer is required to pay 10% of the sale price in taxes, plus the notary fee and Property Register fee. The latter two fees depend on the sale price of the property.
2.4 The sale will take place in the office of the notary selected by the buyer. At this time, the deposit must be paid and the contract of sale signed. In signing the contract of sale, the buyer must provide a cheque emitted by their bank for the remaining amount of the sale price to be paid, once the prepayment and/or the deposit have been deducted.
2.5 Upon signing the contract of sale and paying the total sale price, the buyer is thus declared the property owner and the vendor will surrender possession of the property.
2.6 In the case that the property already has a mortgage, this is cancelled the same day as the contract of sale is signed. In this case the buyer will pay the remaining amount of the mortgage by cheque (emitted by the bank) to the mortgaging bank and another cheque to the notary for the cancellation of the mortgage in the Property Register. They must also issue a cheque to the owner of the property for the rest of the sale price.
2.7 On the same day the contract of sale is signed, the buyer must provide funds to the notary for the processing of the deed, the payment of the tax, notary and property registration fees. It takes approximately one and a half months from the date of the signing to create the deed in the name of the new owner. When the official deed is submitted, the notary will provide receipts for the payments already made, and if there is a difference between the amount paid by the buyer and the expenses of the contract of sale, the buyer will be reimbursed this difference.
2.8 The notary will provide a non-official copy of the deed on the day the contract of sale is signed.