Can a foreigner legally own property in Spain?
Yes, unlike a country like Greece, foreigners can legally own property in Spain. In fact, on average 20% of all new property purchases are undertaken by foreigners. However, if you are from a country not in the EU, it is better to set up a Spanish company and buy your property through it. This will allow you to save up to 45% on Madrid real estate taxes. To learn more about this schedule a call with Fabiana, the owner of Madrid Estate.
Can I get Spanish residency if I buy a property in Spain?
Yes, you can. In fact, Spain has the best Golden Visa scheme in Europe. If you spend 500,000€ or more on a property (note: this does not include refurbishment costs), you can get Spanish residency for you and your family. After five years you will receive long-term residency, and after ten years you will be eligible for Spanish citizenship. Moreover, there are no requirements for how long you must reside in Spain.
Can I spread my Golden Visa property purchase across two properties?
Yes, you can. You have to wait until both transactions have closed, then you can apply for the Golden Visa.
Can I get a Spanish mortgage?
Yes, you can. However, as a foreigner you are riskier for a Spanish bank to lend to. Therefore, you won’t get the rates you might see advertised in bank windows. Moreover, Spanish banks will likely not lend you more than 50% of the purchase price. Therefore, you will need to put 50% down on the property. The good news is that European interest rates are not only at an all-time low (as of spring 2019), they are even negative.
How many trips do I need to make to Spain to purchase a property?
If you work with Madrid Estate, you only need to make one trip: to view the properties. All the closing documents can be signed electronically. If you are tight on time, we can even show you the properties via videos, so you don’t even have to get on a plane. Madrid Estate represents you in Spain 100%. We work with a team of trusted lawyers, accounts, architects and contractors to do everything for you. All you need to do is sign the documents.
Are there additional costs associated with buying a property in Spain that are different from other countries?
This depends upon the country in which you are located, as all countries are a bit different. In fact, the costs inside Spain are diferent, depending upon your location and if you are buying a new property or a second hand property (one that has been lived in before). To keep things simple, we will assume you are buying a second hand property in Madrid. Here is a summary of the additional costs:
- ITP (Transfer tax)- this is a tax you must pay if you buy a property second hand. In Madrid, this is 7% of the purchase price.
- Legal fees- Madrid Estate strongly recommends you use a lawyer for your Madrid property purchase. We have an excellent lawyer who charges [?€]
- Notary costs- all properties purchased in Spain must be notarized. This will be, at most, 1% of the purchase price.
- Land Registry inscription fees- all property sales must be logged in the Land Registry. These fees were determined by a Spanish Royal Decree, and vary depending upon the property price. For example, for a property priced between 150,253.04 and 601,012.10€, the cost is 0.30 per thousand euros. For properties valued greater than 601,012.10€, the cost is 0.20 per thousand euros.
How much can I expect to pay for property in Spain, in addition to the property value?
In general, you should expect to pay an additional 15% of the property purchase price.
Is Madrid a nice place to live?
Madrid is an excellent place to live. It is safe, clean and has some beautiful architecture. The weather never gets too cold and the sun shines most days, even in the middle of winter. Madrid is very safe, Spain has the third best healthcare system in the world and is on track to becoming the world’s longest lived population. Moreover, it has an excellent public transportation system and a relatively low cost of living.
What are the best neighborhoods in Madrid?
This partially depends what you are looking for. Although the Center (neighborhoods of Sol, Hurtas, Malasaña, Chueca, La Latina and Lavapiés) is where most Airbnbs are located, they can be loud and full of tourists. More residential neighborhoods are Salamanca (although this is very expensive), Chamberí and Chamartín. The neighborhood of Almargo, in Chamberí, is particularly beautiful and filled with many chic shops and interesting restaurants. Chamartín, which is located in the northern business district of Madrid, is an excellent choice if you like to walk to work.
Is the Spanish bureaucracy as tricky as everyone say?
It used to be, yes. However it has improved dramatically in recent years. Most transactions have become digitized and soon all will be. The truth is it does work, sometimes it is just a bit slow. Golden Visas are fast tracked, so if you get Spanish residency via buying property in Spain, you will likely have very little trouble. Moreover, Madrid Estate works with an excellent team of lawyers and accountants that can do the legwork for you. Remember: we represent you in Spain, 100%.