Buying a property at auction doesn't impact the credit approval process with Spanish banks
Buying a property at auction doesn't impact the credit approval process with Spanish banks

Spanish property auctions: a good option for non-residents?

As a non-resident, you can obtain a mortgage in Spain to buy a property at an auction. To do so, you'll need to meet the standard requirements for non-residents and provide all the necessary documents for your mortgage application.

Delia Mihuț
Written by: Delia Mihuț
Published at 2024-01-23
Last updated on 2024-06-11
Readtime 3 minutes

Finding the right property in Spain can be challenging, and navigating the process is often complex. Buying a Spanish property at auction could be a simpler and faster alternative, especially if you've already set your sights on a specific property.

In this guide, we’ll run through essential information you need to know if you consider this option. We’ll also discuss securing a mortgage for such investments and gain insights from Petra, a Swiss resident who successfully purchased a property in Spain at auction.

What is a Spanish property auction?

A Spanish property auction is a public sale event where properties in Spain are sold to the highest bidder. 

This method is often used for properties repossessed by banks or sold by government entities, but it can also include private sales. 

What are the steps for buying a Spanish property at auction?

To help you navigate through this process, here’s what you need to know when buying real estate at auction:

  1. Start by researching available properties. Explore online listings from auction houses or government portals to find properties that meet your location, type, and price preferences.
  2. Investigate the property for any debts, or legal issues. Ideally, visit the property and consult a real estate attorney or expert.
  3. Sign up for the auction
  4. Apply for a mortgage in advance, as quick payment is often needed after an auction
  5. Attend the auction and place your bids

You will win the auction if you're the highest bidder and meet or exceed the reserve price. You will then be required to pay a deposit, typically a percentage of the purchase price.

What should a non-resident citizen know when buying a property at auction in Spain?

Real estate auctions are recognized as an effective method for purchasing properties at prices lower than market value. “The process can be smoother with repossessed properties since some documents are already checked and available.

When you are a non-resident, your stay in Spain is limited. You can use the property for vacation or rental, so it's essential to confirm rental possibilities. Note that some real estate companies do not offer mortgages for these properties”, says Petra, a non-resident from Switzerland who bought a property in Spain through an auction.

How long does it take to buy a Spanish property at auction?

Buying a Spanish property at auction is typically faster than a standard one.

Petra came across an advertisement for buying a property in Spain in May while on vacation, and that became her starting point. By December, she already had the apartment.

She decided on her criteria: an apartment in a location with a warm climate most of the year, close to the sea, featuring modern architecture, and offering access to a swimming pool. 

With these criteria in mind, I embarked on my search in Murcia, resulting in a list of five potential apartments. I chose the one that was the most affordable for me. Some of these apartments were still in the project phase, indicating a potential waiting period of approximately one year for the completion and handover of the property.”

Is it possible to access a mortgage for buying a Spanish property at auction?

Yes, you can get a mortgage in Spain as a non-resident to buy a property at an auction. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage before the auction starts is a good idea. This way, you know how much you can spend and make a quick payment if you win.

Buying at an auction means you need to pay fast. Standard mortgage processes might take a while, so consider working with a broker to speed up the process.

Are there any special requirements from the banks in Spain to offer a mortgage?

Purchasing a property at auction does not impact the credit approval process with banks in Spain. You need to meet the standard requirements for non-residents and provide all necessary documents to complete your mortgage application

Is it easy to get a mortgage in Spain with income from Switzerland?

Getting a mortgage in Spain with income from Switzerland is possible, as Spanish banks accept applicants who earn their income in Swiss Francs. 

You can also apply by yourself as a foreigner, but I would suggest asking for help if you want a smooth process.

Homevest guided me through the process and supported me in additional steps, such as applying for NIE, connecting me with the right company for valuation, double-checking the process, and most importantly, I always felt supported. I had the confidence that I was in very good hands in case I missed something. I purchased the apartment alone, so I had no other support in the process”, mentions Petra.

Seeking the best mortgage deal for your property purchase? Homevest helps you increase your chances

Homevest is a digital service that makes banks compete for your case to get you the best mortgage terms. 

I know people who have been searching for years to find the right apartment. In my case, everything happened very quickly, and I am grateful for that”.

When you opt for Homevest, your mortgage application will be reviewed, submitted to various lenders, and you will receive mortgage offers. “I was lucky to find Homevest and Ioana. I was under time pressure after reserving the apartment, and without her help, I likely wouldn't have obtained the mortgage in time”, says Petra

Homevest will assist you in reviewing these offers and negotiating with the banks to meet your specific needs. You'll benefit from priority service from the banks, ensuring you secure your mortgage in time for the property signing.

Seven days after applying through Homevest, the client received their first offer from Sabadell. After brief negotiations, the client obtained a 4% fixed interest rate for the first year, transitioning to Euribor + 1.95% thereafter.


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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