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The Spanish property market

Over the last years (and decade) the Spanish property market has evolved a lot. Whether it is for the legal level or for the commercial level the data strongly changed.

Today virtually all of the Iberian Peninsula, share the same laws in term of real estate regulation, although some small differences may appear from one autonomic province to another.

This does not mean that a purchase in the Basque country and Andalusia will be made in the same conditions, some differences can be noticed.

In 2013 approximately 300,000 transactions have been made. Marking a strong (the least that can be said) down from the highest level on record in 2007 with a greater number of sales of .... 955,000 this year!

It goes without saying that the price per m2 vary greatly from one region to another with micro phenomena within areas generating very important .... and surprising rate differentials!

Commercial aspects, state and market characteristics

After many years of falling prices, it seems that the Spanish property stabilizes. Depending on the source and how to calculate, the price per m2 would range now widely around the € 1,300 / m2 for second hand and new apartments. But that is just a number of little value. It is obvious that an apartment in the center of Madrid (€ 2,856 / m2), Barcelona (3,300 € / m2) or Basque Country (€ 4,400 / m2 for San Sebastian) will sell at a much higher price per m2 than if it was located for example in Ávila (€ 1,249 / m2) (source: March 2014).

We also have to take into account distortion induced by certain players like Sareb that sells an average of 43 units per day since the beginning of 2014, at prices well below what is mentioned above!

Furthermore, and this is important for all foreign buyers: Crisis or not, there are important factors in determining the value of a property. A sea view apartment, or with a walking beach access, a house by the sea or canal (marina) will selll at a price that can not be compared to what it would be in an other place of the same city but wihtout sea view, mooring etc.... For example in the City of Roses (Girona) the price by m2 can be estimated at around € 2,000 in March 2014, but, if it is an apartment in the city center or in the sea front, the price can go from 2,000 to € 4,500 ..... or more per m2.

To these we must also add that the available locations and qualities are getting more and more rare. For example plots available to build a house on canal in Empuriabrava can be counted on the fingers of one hand ..., resulting in a price per m2 of up to € 1,000 for the land. The price of the construction of the house has then to be added. One consequence is that more and more buyers are purchasing homes for demolition and reconstruction. Therefore it is more the purchase of a location than of a property.

For candidates to construction, a factor to be considered is the duality architect / project management and the fees arising therefrom and which should be considered because that could seriously affect the budget. For this we offer a comprehensive service incluing these two elements (see our building section). An other aspect to take into consideration in case of purchase of a plot will be its ability to be built (certificate from the town hall attesting it) and the physical characteristics of the soil, particularly on the Costa Brava).

Buying in Spain basic rules.

Many foreign buyers are anxious for a first purchase. But in fact the process is simple and safe.

Buying a property in Spain can be done very quickly, within 48 hours we can go to the notary to sign the deed of sale and make the payment.

The notary is responsible for the legal aspects of the property sold (documentation available and updated). It is also responsible for the effective communication of information relating to the transaction, informing each of the 2 parts (buyer and seller) of the characteristics of the sale (in particular existence of charges on property to be sold) and coercion of some kind (easements etc ...). By provinces (as in Catalonia, for example), the notary no receives money. It simply verifies that what is stated on the deed is effective: money paid, recipient, method of payment used etc .... and then the entry in the register of ownership of the changes.

A sale may can not be made if the required documentation is not submitted. Particularly energy certificates and the "Cedula de Habitabilidad." Please note there may also be other documents. For foreigners a NIE is essential, even if they are European citizens.

If you are buying land take time to check the urban characteritics of the property, the land use plan is now available on the internet for a large number of cities. You can also ask for a "certificado of aprovechamiento urbanistico" that commit the town hall to 6 months with regard to the nature of the construction possible. Enough to buy and then file a building permit (contact us for more information.)

We will help you in all these areas and we will submit a complete application to the notary.

In case of funding, we will also support you in your efforts. In this regard it should be noted that Spanish banks are starting to fund property acquisitions, but also seek candidates for funding.
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