Spanish banks cover up to 70% of the value of the property
Spanish banks cover up to 70% of the value of the property

Buying property in Spain in 2024 as a foreigner: everything you need to know

Many expats have settled in Spain or invested in a holiday home there. You must know how the process works if you’re considering doing the same. Keep reading a guide that covers everything you need to know when buying a property in Spain as a foreigner.

Delia Mihuț
Written by: Delia Mihuț
Published at 2023-02-27
Last updated on 2024-05-15
Readtime 7 minutes

If you’re relocating to Spain for retirement, work, or simply to enjoy the laid-back lifestyle, buying property for residence or investment has likely crossed your mind.

Whether your destination is Madrid, Mallorca, Valencia, or any smaller city in between, you’ll find different real estate options, from massive estates to tiny flats.

Foreigners account for one in every five homes sold in Spain, which means a market wide open for expats and foreign investors.

Why it works?

  • It’s well connected by international airports that accommodate low-cost and transcontinental flights
  • The healthcare system is ranked among the best in the world and adds value to the city’s living standards
  • As a touristic hub that draws visitors worldwide, Spain is a smart choice for rental investment
  • The exquisite food, beaches, and abundant sunshine boost endorphin levels
  • Spain offers a Digital Nomad Visa, meaning you can extend your stay beyond 90 days if you're from outside the EU

What’s the property market in Spain in 2024?

Housing demand remains consistently high, especially in urban and coastal areas. House prices increased an average of 4.5% from the previous year, indicating a growing market.

In March 2024, the Illes Balears region had the highest property asking prices, at €4,587 per square meter. In contrast, Castilla-La Mancha offered the most affordable options, with prices as low as €948 per square meter, the lowest in Spain.

How easy is it for a foreigner to buy a property in Spain?

Foreigners face no restrictions when purchasing property in Spain, though non-residents may find the process somewhat daunting. Navigating through extensive paperwork and due diligence can be overwhelming.

Working with a real estate agent could simplify the process, making it more straightforward. 

What are the legal requirements for buying property in Spain as a foreigner?

Even if you opt to work with a professional, it's important to understand local taxes, such as property and transfer taxes, which vary depending on whether you're buying a new or resale property.

An NIE number is mandatory for any financial transaction in Spain, including applying for a mortgage to increase your budget. 

While not required, having a Spanish bank account can facilitate smoother money transfers and potentially save on conversion rates if you're dealing with a currency other than the Euro.

What taxes do you need to pay for buying property in Spain?

Purchasing property in Spain involves various fees, including those for different property types, notary services, legal representation, and other charges. 

Here’s an overview of the costs you can expect to pay when buying property in Spain: 

  • Property transfer tax or Impuesto sobre Transacciones Patrimoniales (ITP) (if you buy a resale property): 6-10%
  • VAT (if you buy a new property): 10%
  • AJD (if you buy a new property): 1% to 1.5%
  • Notary fees: 0.1% to 0.4%
  • Registration fees: 0.4% to 1%
  • Legal: 1% to 2%
  • Estate agent fee (usually paid by the seller): 3%

Make sure you consult with a tax specialist beforehand, as they can give you the most accurate information on taxes in Spain. Meanwhile, continue reading a guide about the taxes for non-residents in Spain.

A mortgage: an alternative to boost your property budget in Spain

All these taxes and fees can significantly increase the cost of property acquisition. A mortgage could provide you with a substantial upfront sum, allowing you to secure a better property or location. Opting for financing might also amplify your initial investment's return.

Foreigners have several choices with Spanish banks, which may vary based on the currency of their income. Banks such as Sabadell, Santander, Hola Bank by Caixabank, Cajasur, Bankinter, Banca March, and BBVA are potential choices as long as they meet the eligibility and repayment criteria.

Request a quick simulation to understand how much you can borrow based on your financial profile. Homevest is a digital platform that connects you with leading Spanish banks eager to offer competitive options for your case. 

Frequent questions for foreigners buying property in Spain

Now that we’ve covered some essential info on your home-buying journey in Spain, let’s answer some of the common questions you might have.

1. Is it a good idea to buy a property in Spain?

Foreigners, including British, Germans, French, Romanians, Belgians, Italians, and Dutch, accounted for 21.4% of property purchases in 2023. Even if you don't plan to permanently reside in Spain, renting out the property can still provide a worthwhile investment opportunity. 

2. Can a US citizen buy a property in Spain?

Yes! Buying property in Spain as a US citizen might have some challenges, but with good advice, knowing the local rules, and careful planning, owning a house in this country is possible.

3. Can a UK citizen buy property in Spain after Brexit?

Buying a property in Spain from the UK is possible as before.  

The good news is that the Spanish government is advocating for removing the post-Brexit 90-day stay limit in EU countries, which may soon allow UK citizens to extend their stays.

4. How much deposit do you need to buy a house in Spain?

Typically, a foreign buyer needs a 30% deposit, as mortgages can cover up to 70% of the property's sale price. 

If you are interested in expanding your property budget, continue to read all you need to know about getting a mortgage in Spain as a non-resident in 2024.

5. What are the mortgage rates in Spain?

In March, the average mortgage rate in Spain was 4.25%, a continued decline from 4.91% in January 2024.  

Staying updated on the latest mortgage rates for non-residents in Spain is key to effective negotiation, and that's where Homevest steps in to help you secure the best deal. 

6. What are the best mortgages for non-residents in Spain?

Since the beginning of the year, Sabadell has made the most competitive offers. This trend persisted into March when Sabadell presented the best offer among all banks in Spain: 3.25%. 

However, when looking for the best mortgages in Spain for non-residents, consider not just the interest rates but also any extra fees. 

7. How much do I need to invest in Spain to qualify for citizenship?

It is not possible to obtain Spanish citizenship only through investment. Learn about your options and discover what you need to do to qualify for Spanish citizenship.

8. Do you need a tourist license to rent a property in Spain as a foreigner?

Yes, you need a tourist license called licencia de vivienda turistica. It’s a legal requirement if you want to rent your property to tourists for short stays. 

 

 

Once you’ve considered all the important points of buying property in Spain as a foreigner, you’re ready to get started in your search. 

Remember that support like Homevest can accelerate buying a house in Spain directly from abroad.

 

Sources used and checked in April 2024:

  1. Non-resident buyers in Spain
  2. Spain property market in 2024
  3. Housing price in Spain, March 2024
 

We recommend obtaining professional or specialist advice before taking or refraining from any action based on the content in this article. The information in this article does not constitute legal, tax, or other professional advice from Homevest Limited. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. We make no representations, warranties, or guarantees, whether express or implied, that the content in this article is accurate, complete, or up to date.

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