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Selling property in Spain might result being a difficult task for a foreigner. That’s why we always recommend you to request assistance of a lawyer as no one will instruct you better than a professional.

BLUE ESTATES offers assistance of attorneys specialized in the real estate area, who can consult you in your native language, resolve your questions and provide you with the best consulting services which you didn’t have problems with when selling residential property in Spain.

In continuation we offer you a guide of steps and recommendations that you should take into consideration when selling property in Spain:

GUIDE BLUE ESTATES. SELLING PROPERTY IN SPAIN

1º CHOOSING A REAL ESTATE AGENCY
The art of effective business is based on having a good intermediary. To choose your real estate agency you should take into consideration the next points:
Customer Service. The people should be easy to work with. It is also important that the agency office had big showcases where buyers can see your property.
Profesional designations. The agency with qualified attorneys-specialists in real estate market will guarantee absence of problems when selling your property.
Marketing plan. Besides the price, it’s important to undertake correct actions for the effective sale of a property (advertising, collaboration with other real estate agencies).
Multilingual real estate agency. It is very important that the real estate agency that you chose had multilingual structure and worked with foreign clients.

Three mistakes when choosing a real estate agency

1.- Hire an agency that reduces the fees is a good way to save money.
THE TRUTH: The agencies that request lower charges normally can´t do much for you – just to hang “for sale” sign. On average the agencies that charge higher fees sell faster and make better service than cheaper agencies, as they invest money in marketing for selling your property faster while other agencies will be selling it months and in the end they´ll tell you that it´s necessary to lower the price. This saving might make you lose in the end.

2.- All agencies are the same
THE TRUTH: As in any other profession there are very good agencies and ones that are not so good. A good agent knows real estate market very well, this person has a proven experience and can sell your property fast and at the best possible price at good and bad times.

3.- You have to choose an agency that will offer you the highest sales price.
THE TRUTH: Agencies with little experience and professionalism will try to get commissioning telling their clients that they can set an unbelievably high price which doesn’t have to do much with the reality. With wrong price expectations the only thing you’ll get is to have your property “for sale” continuously. You have to make an effective decision that will offer you the best marketing plan and insist to be shown a rigorous market analysis.

In BLUE ESTATES we guarantee sale of your property on the best conditions, we’ll make you the best marketing plan with advertisement, inclusion of the property in the real estate sales web databases and their promotion, informing our clients about new properties, organization of visits to homes and collaboration with other agencies and their branches.
We will negotiate with buyers for the best offer and will close the sale, taking care of all the formalities at the moment of signing a Purchase and Sale contract and Notary Deed as well as after-sales tasks. People who work in our company are multilingual specialists who know all the necessary information in your language and will explain you everything what you might not understand.

We will help you out in all the problems if you have any when selling your property (mortgage, embargo, inherence, subsidized housing cancellation, etc)

In BLUE ESTATES we will provide you with an effective and professional service for selling your property.

2º ORDER NOTE
is a document that should be signed by the seller with the real estate agency where the next points should be stated:

Personal data of the owner of the housing
Legal data of the property
The characteristics of the property
Sales conditions
Sales commission, normally it is a percentage over the sales price.

Order note has a concept of a sales mandate contract where the seller orders a real estate agency to sell his or her property in exchange for sales commission.
Order note can be signed on an exclusive basis (with only one agency) or on a non-exclusive basis (with different agencies).

The order note will be valid till it´s revoked (cancelled) by the seller.

3º SELLING PRICE OF A PROPERTY

It is fundamental to set the sale price of your property.
You might have an idea about it because you know the prices on the real estate market or may be because someone you know has sold a property of the same characteristics.

This information is important as it can guide you while setting the price but it is still important to be informed about the selling price by a professional regarding the next information:
– The market prices on the properties of the same characteristics
– The state of the property
– Its location
– Changes which happen on the real estate market (price rise or crisis)

In BLUE ESTATES we´ll make the market price analysis for you based the selling price of your property.
At the moment prices on the real estate market follow the principle: “buyer sets the price” as the supply is higher than the demand on properties.

So that the property has market price and could be sold in a reasonable period of time it is necessary to know the behaviour of the real estate market.

Correct price of a property will always reduce its selling period.

If you are not well informed about it you can face the situation of an overvalued price which can cause the next problems:
– Prospective buyers won´t visit your property.
– So won’t do our partner agents as they might regard it as waste of time.
– This price might be used to sell another property of the same characteristics at a lower price.
– After a period of time it will become obvious that it’ll be necessary to lower the price.

To avoid this, it’s essential to determine the target selling price.

When there’s a big difference between the price you set and the price of a real estate agency, we recommend to make an evaluation of your property by one of the independent real estate valuation companies. Although it will cost you some money, you’ll know the exact price on your property.

Selling price should include a fee or sales commission of a real estate agency as an additional margin which will let us consider a lower bid.

4º ABBREVIATED INFORMATION DOCUMENT
Decree 218/05 of 11 October, amending the regulation of consumer information in purchase-sale and rent of property in Andalusia

is a document which contains the information about the property for buyers.

Information for the buyer:
– It´s necessary to inform buyers that all the prices for existing or new property will rise because of tax and other expenses stated by law: notary expenses, Stamp Duty Land Tax, property registry, VAT or asset transfer tax, real estate agency fee, etc.
– In case with the prices for new properties on the stage of project or construction when an acceptance of advanced payments is planned as a part of the property´s price, according to the law, their amounts should be stated in an official receipt or proceeded through the banking account.
– Consumer has the right to be given a copy of the abbreviated information document.

5º ENERGY PERFORMANCE CERTIFICATE
Royal Decree 235/2013 of 5 April, amending the basic procedure for energy performance certification of buildings.

1.- What is Energy Performance Certificate?
It is an official document prepared by technicians. It shows objective information about the energy characteristics of a property estimating annual use of energy necessary to meet the energy demand of a building at its normal conditions, occupation and function. It includes the production of hot water, central heating, illumination, cooling and ventilation.

The process of energy certification is accompanied by emission of an energy performance certificate and energy efficiency label. The last one shows the energy efficiency of a building according to the letter on the scale which varies from A (high) to G (low).

2.- Why do I need it for my property?

According to the law this certificate is obligatory for all the owners of any individual part of an existing building as an object of purchase and sale operations or rent.

Having energy performance certificate is essential at the moment of signing the notary deed of purchase and sale.

This certificate indicates advantage or disadvantage of compared properties.

In BLUE ESTATES we´ll formalize Energy Performance certificate for your property fast and economically. Contact us for more information.

6º PREPARATION OF YOUR HOME FOR BUYERS’ VISITS
The first impression of your home is fundamental for a buyer to decide if he or she wants to buy it. Taking this fact into consideration you have to work through all the possible details to create a positive image of this first impression at the time of visit.
Studies over buyers’ behaviour show that a person makes a decision during the first 90 seconds of the visit.

It’s extremely important to prepare your home at its best, because you might not have a second chance to demonstrate it to your potential client.

If we want to attract buyers, the image of the selling property should blur other similar variants. When we advertise a property it’s important to choose good high quality pictures: bright, with the views from different perspectives of the house and it’s interior.

The visit to the property should always be made with a real estate agent who perfectly knows all the data of the property and the needs of the potential buyer. We should try to push all the advantages of the property.
BLUE ESTATES recommends to prepare your house or apartment for buyers’ visits to rise chances of its sale. Although each kind of property has its own characteristics which may differ from others, the process of deciding is based on the same principles, that’s why these recommendations will be helpful for selling of an apartment or a villa.

Clean-up and time of visits

Before making an appointment for a visit with a client we have to be sure that the house is in order and that it’s clean. If the owners are currently living in the property we have to avoid the time of early morning and lunch. But simultaneously we have to take advantage of the daylight hours.
It is so important that a buyer might decide to buy a property just because of its image and not because of its price, location or the interior distribution.

Garden zones

When you sell a villa with a garden it is important to take care of the access to the house. It should be clean, without leaves, litter, tools or other objects that might overshadow the access to the entry.
The terraces and exterior furniture should be clean, in a good condition and smartly located so that the buyer could imagine how this space can be furnished in case he or she decides to buy the property. Humble decoration with flowers, candles or light make a very good impression on visitors.

Pool
The pool should be flawless: with crystal water, clean bottom, without leaves or dirt on its surface. The water should be still and the area around the pool – cared of.
You should also highlight such profitable technical characteristics as salt or ozone water chlorinator etc.

Interior of a housing
Tidiness and order are fundamental points. Open the curtains to illuminate the interior space. All the personal objects of everyday use, pictures should be removed from the worktops and furniture. The house should smell fresh and clean. Decoration with flowers always produces a good impression.

Bedrooms
All the rooms in the house, they should be in order: beds – made, clothes – hung in the wardrobe.

Kitchen
The kitchen should look like at the first day of its installation. It’s a must to remove all the food from the worktop. Electric and other home appliances should be in perfect state. The sink – clean, without fat or dirt. It’s good to use air fresheners which kill the smell of food.

Bathrooms
They should be clean, without water in the sink or bathtub. All the lime must be removed from plumbing, taps, toilets or mirrors.

Pets
In case you have them, you should be very careful at the moment of the visit. Pets would better stay in a separate place and not all over the house. Many people are allergic to animals and some just don’t like the idea of having pets at home so it also might cause a negative impression.

Living rooms and chill out zones
As always – in order and clean. You have to push their advantages as they are meeting points with the guests and is the image of the house. If the living room has a function of a dining room, to boost the image, we recommend to serve the dining table with cutlery like in a restaurant. It produces an incredible effect on visitors.
Old sofas and armchairs must be removed.

They always should be in a perfect state also because visitors might need to seat to make a better idea of the walls and space. If you have old, faded, massive curtains, they also must be removed. It’s better to have bare walls than ugly decorations. Simple white light curtains aren’t expensive at all. We also recommend to freshen the walls with a new layer of paint. When illuminated, it optically increases the space. It’s also worth changing door handles as it is not nice at all to touch them if they are old, half destroyed or dirty. In case you have antennae with international channels it is necessary to inform visitors about them.
Other rooms
The garage territory, basement and utility rooms should also be in order and clean. It’s unacceptable that a tool fell from a shelf when you open the door. Unordered basements or utility rooms look even smaller.
Housing quality memory
It is significant to demonstrate if there are such advantages like air conditioning, HVAC system, underfloor heating, insulation, solar panels, window blinds, home automation etc.

7º DEPOSIT CONTRACT SIGNING

When you’ve chosen a property that you want to buy, you will have to clarify at BLUE ESTATES the process of formalization of the deposit document to reserve the property and take it off the market.

The deposit can vary depending on the type of a property and its price. Normally deposit amount varies from €3.000 to €10.000 for properties which cost up to €250.000 and 5% of the selling price of properties with higher price.
Legally, deposit has a function of a pre-contract as a demonstration of the next step – Purchase and Sale contract.

At BLUE ESTATES we recommend to formalize deposit document when you decide to buy property in Spain as a guarantee that someone won´t buy it before you.

8º PURCHASE AND SALE CONTRACT
After deposit process is finished you will have to sign a Purchase and Sale Contract.

Our attorneys at BLUE ESTATES will edit your Purchase and Sale Contract with all the legal guaranties.

In Spain a Purchase and Sales Contract is a document of mutual obligations of both parties, where one party – the buyer is obliged to pay a stipulated price and the other party – the seller – to prepare a property which is the object of the contract.
In a Purchase and sale Contract there should be stated all the personal data, private circumstances of buyers and sellers, detailed description of the property, its registration information; that all the community payments and taxes are paid, that the property has no difficulties as debts, mortgage or tenants; as any other analogical circumstances as the terms of property´s transfer, building specifications, form of payment, state of property at the moment of transferring, furniture and equipment specification description etc.

At the moment of signing of the Purchase and Sale Contract the payment amount will be between 20-30% of the selling price and the rest of the payment will be made at the moment of signing the Notary Deed.

9º NOTARY DEED

The operation of purchasing of a property in Spain finishes with the signing of the Notary Deed and its further inscription into the Register of Real Property.

The Notary Deed is a Purchase and Sale Contract between the parties of the seller and the buyer with the intervention of a notary. To sign the Notary Deed you will have to count on the juridical consultation of an attorney because it requires filing a lot of documents at the moment of signing of this document to comply with Purchase and Sale norms of a property.

In case you are a foreigner who wants to buy property in Spain, we recommend you to make a power-of-attorney for your lawyer to let this person carry our all kinds of formalities like receiving and applying for different documents when you aren’t in Spain etc.

10º SELLER’S EXPENSES AND TAXES

Sale of property in Spain is subject to tax payments. As well as for purchase, Blue Estates always recommends to request assistance of a lawyer.

Before we start talking about taxes on selling property in Spain it is important to pay attention to two concepts of the word “resident”:
Administrative resident – a person who lives in Spain less than 183 days a year and is not registered in the Tax agency of Spain.
Tax resident – a person who lives in Spain 183 days a year and more, registered in the Tax Agency of Spain. It is understood that any administrative resident who lives in Spain 183 days and more should be registered in the Tax agency office in Spain as a tax resident.

Property Sales Taxes in Spain:

1. PLUSVALIA (CAPITAL GAIN TAX)
It is a tax to pay to the municipality for the sale of a property. It´s counted by applying a percentage corresponding to the time of ownership of the property to its rateable value. The seller has to pay this tax.

2. Income Tax for tax residents of Spain (IRPF)
is a tax which is paid to the country by its residents. Income resident tax =

(Transfer value – Purchase value) x tax rate %

Purchase value is formed of the actual amount of acquisition of the transferred object which we sum up with the expenses and taxes on its acquiring. It doesn´t include interests of banks if a mortgage or credit taken etc.
If the transferred property was rented, a determined value can be reduced from the amortizations correspondent to the period of renting.

Transfer value is the actual amount which was paid for the property transfer minus the amount of expenses and taxes for the property’s transfer which were made by the seller.

To this amount we apply the next calculation:
Year
2015
2016
Tax rate
20%
19%

For example: You have sold your house for 200 000 euros and bought another one for 120 000 euros.
200 000 – 120 = 80 000 – is your “profit”
20% from 80 000 euros = 16 000 euros – the amount of the tax of a Spanish tax resident.

3. Income Tax for tax non-residents of Spain (IRNR)
is a tax which is paid to the country by nonresidents. Income nonresident tax =

(Transfer value – Purchase value) x tax rate %

Purchase value is formed of the actual amount of acquisition of the transferred object which we sum up with the expenses and taxes on its acquiring. It doesn´t include interests of banks if a mortgage or credit taken etc.
If the transferred property was rented, a determined value can be reduced from the amortizations correspondent to the period of renting.

Transfer value is the actual amount which was paid for the property transfer minus the amount of expenses and taxes for the property’s transfer which were made by the seller.

To this amount we apply the next calculation:
Year
2015
2016
Tax rate
20%
19%

For example: You have sold your house for 200 000 euros and bought another one for 120 000 euros.
200 000 – 120 = 80 000 – is your “profit”
20% from 80 000 euros = 16 000 euros – the amount of the tax of a Spanish tax non-resident.

4. Exemption due to reinvestment in a main residence for taxpayers of EU, Iceland and Norway (applicable to the gains earned since the 1st of January 2015):
In case of taxpayers of one of the country-members of the European Union or the European Economic Area with an effective exchange of tax information, capital gains for the main residence transfer in Spain can be excluded from the burden if the total amount you gained for the transfer, is reinvested into purchase of another main residence property. If the reinvested amount is less than the amount from the sold property, a person should only pay the income tax on the “gained difference”.
When reinvestment was made before the date of declaration, total or partial reinvestment can be taken into account to determine tax refund.

5. RETENTION IN CASE THE SELLER IS NOT A TAX RESIDENT OF SPAIN
Any buyer is obliged to retain 3% of the property’s price from the seller and deposit this amount to the government treasury. This payment is a part of the seller’s income tax.
After effecting the deposit in the Spanish tax agency the buyer should give to the seller the form 211 which contains the information about effecting the deposit of the retention so that the seller could deduct this amount from his income tax.

If the retained amount is bigger than the amount to deposit, it is possible to refund the excess.

Declaration period: three months counting from the end of the period given for depositing the retention amount in the tax office by the buyer (1 month since the date of selling the property).

EXPENSES OF THE SELLER
The first expense that a seller should effect is the sales commission to the real estate agency.
All the community expenses for the period of ownership of this property should be paid.