CASE STUDY – Selling a Property


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A few days ago we received a similar enquiry to this regarding selling a property.

“Good afternoon,

We are three sisters from the UK who jointly own a 3-bedroom property on a community in Playa Flamenca. We inherited the property from our mother and the ownership of the property was legally transferred into our names in 1996 by a Spanish notary based in Torrevieja, and we have the original deeds relating to the transfer.  We pay SUMA, water and electricity bills by direct debit from our Bankia account, and we pay the community fees annually by bank transfer.

Although we have been using the property periodically as a holiday home for our families over the years, now that our children are grown up, we have decided to sell the property. We would be grateful if you could let us know whether you would be able to manage the sale of the property for us, and how much you would charge for this service.”

We were, of course, delighted to help, and answered thanking the lady for the enquiry and suggesting that we could call her if she wished. We said that we would also send her the information in writing as well and attached our price list which details the aspects we cover (as below):-

Notary Appointment Preparation
Liaison with Buyer’s Solicitors
Nota Simple (Land Registry Check up)
Translation in the Notary
Preparation of all Utilities documents required
Calculation of 3% retention (if applicable)
Calculation of Capital Gains Tax
Fiscal Representation
Calculation of Plusvalía

We also advised that she needs to have in place all paperwork required to sell a property, detailed below:-

– recent invoices of all supplies
– community certificate of no debts
– copy of Deeds
– last SUMA bill paid up to date
– Habitation Certificate
– Energy Performance Certificate

As many people don’t understand the last two documents, we provided an explanation as below:

– Habitation Certficate.- this document proves that the property meets the Town Hall habitability requirements. It is not possible for the buyer to take over a water contract without it.

– Energy Performance Certificate.- this is a new certificate to be provided since June 2013. It is compulsory to have it when someone advertises a property for sale or rent.

We explained that we can assist with any of the matters listed above and others related to the sale of the property.

Following this email, the lady asked if she could chat about various things and a telephone conversation took place, following which we sent the following email as a summary of the conversation:-

“It was very nice to talk to you this morning over the phone.  As agreed I am writing to you with a summary of our conversation. Please, if I forget anything, send me an e-mail to remind me and I will send you the information.

We can help you with the whole process from the beginning, even putting the property for sale with different agents in the area. As I told you we work closely with the well-known agents Comaskey Properties which are next to us.  They have been one of the most successful agents at selling a property for over a decade. Some agents will put their commission on top of your price, as Comaskey does, so they ensure you get what you want, and others will agree to a commission of a percentage of the total selling price. 

If you decide to use their services they can hold the keys to your property and hand them to other agents if necessary. But the best thing is that they contact you directly and explain to you how they work in detail.

With regards how to hire our services, one e-mail from you to instruct us to act your behalf has legal validity. We will also need copies of your passports, NIE documents, Deeds, etc and contact details.

If you need our help to get the proper bills from SUMA and utility companies we can also help you with that.  For that, it will only be required that you sign an authorisation form. We would charge 30€ plus vat to get them all. You can pay us by electronic transfer and return an authorisation form by e-mail.

If you do not wish to come to Spain for completion, then you can arrange a Power of Attorney in our favour which will include all the aspects required to act on your behalf and complete the sale of your property. We would only act on your specific instructions. We would prepare the draft of the document according to the Spanish and UK legalities. The document will be signed in the UK before a Notary Public and we can send more detailed info on the process if you prefer this option.!”

The client was very happy and responded saying it was very nice to talk to us and to receive answers to her questions. She had a further query, which sometimes people have. As far as she is aware, they do not have any NIE documents, but she had seen that they all have an NIF number which is on documentation they received when they paid the taxes that were due when they inherited the property. She asked if this the same as the NIE.  We explained that we would need to see the documents to be able to answer that question because the format has changed since 1996 and it is possible that the numbers she got at that time were only provisional. But if she scanned it to us, we would be able to tell her.

All was fine and she will proceed with the sale of the property and us helping deal with the legalities. If you are in a similar position, please do not hesitate to contact us; we are responsive and helpful. Please contact

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