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Buying your first home in Spain? Maybe you’re reserving it without even being Spain to see it in person. Without the correct guidance, it will feel like there’s so much to understand, from the process to the paperwork, getting a mortgage and applying for your N.I.E. number.

To make it a little clearer, here are 5 things every first time home buyer in Spain, needs to know:

1. Know what your budget is. Everyone has a limit on how much they can and want to spend on their home in the sun. So figuring out your budget before you start your search, will not only save you time, but will help you narrow down which properties to look at in person or online. Tip: You’ll love homes you can’t afford, so only look at the ones you can!

2. Need a mortgage? If you need to apply for a loan, there are a few different options out there right now. Speaking to the bank in Spain is very easy to do, they do speak English so don’t worry about communicating with them. You don’t need to habla Español! If a mortgage is not what you need, but a top up loan would be enough, the Spanish banks are offering “quick approval” loans up to €60,000. My advice is always to speak directly with the bank and let them offer you their best rate and advice.

Amount you can borrow for “Non-Residents” (not residing in Spain,) is usually up to 70% of the purchase price. For “Residents” they lend up to 80%. Tip: These percentages can and do fluctuate from bank to bank, so it is always best to take advice directly from your chosen entity at the start of your property search.

3. N.I.E. number. This is your Spanish tax number. Every person that is purchasing a property, must have this designated number. This means, if two people are buying a home together, both individuals must have a number each. You will need to have this number to open a Spanish bank account and/or applying for a mortgage. N.I.E. numbers are applied for, through the “Comisaría de Policia” (National Police station) within the province of your new home address or through the Spanish Embassy or Consulate. You do not need an N.I.E. number to reserve a property to buy. Tip: Sometimes it’s easier to pay for someone to apply for this number for you, instead of trying to do it yourself.

4. Use a Lawyer. In Spain you can buy a property and complete the paperwork by yourself, however, I think you’ll agree with me when I say, it is definitely not worth the risk! Using a legal Spanish Lawyer may cost you around €1,000 to do the relevant checks on paperwork, legality of the home, debts, etc. (conveyancing). And, they too will speak English! Tip: Make sure they are a Lawyer and not just an accountant or administrator. The Spanish word for Lawyer is “Abogado/a.” “Asesoria” is an accountant. “Gestoria” is an administrator.

5. The Notary. In Spain when signing on the dotted line to complete your purchase, you have to be present in a Notary’s office to sign your new Title Deeds. The Notary is a Government official, is completely independent and bears witness to the transaction. They don’t work for the vendor, and neither do they work for the buyer. They are the ones that make your purchase legally binding and official. Tip: If travel restrictions are preventing you from being present at the Notary, you could draw up a Power Of Attorney to allow someone else to appear on your behalf. This could be done using a Notary Public in the U.K. if you’re not in Spain.

Need expert guidance with your property search? Call us today on 966 718 392 or send us an email: With the help of our “online virtual tours expert,” you can walk through “virtually,” every property we offer for sale, from the comfort and safety of your own home. Ask for Catriona, and schedule your guided online virtual tour, today!


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