Helping a client understand the house sale process


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The procedures concerning the sale of a house here in Spain can be overwhelming for the uninitiated. We were contact by a young lady who needed assistance. She asked:

Please can you help me with the sale of my property. How long does the sale process take and what do I need to provide?

The average length of a sale process is in between 2 and 3 months. It can be done quicker if the buyer has all funds in Spain and the property has all the required documents in place. We provide you with a list of documents required to sell a property. If the buyer needs a mortgage to purchase the process can delay another month.

  • Habitation Certificate.- this document proves that the property meets the Town Hall habitability requirements. It is not possible for the buyer to take over your 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 you advertise your property for sale or rent.

With regards the taxes involved, the seller has to pay three taxes:

  • SUMA tax of the year selling.
  • Plusvalia Tax – It is paid to the Town Hall and the amount depends on the cadastral value and the years passed since you bought the property until you sell it. The figure will vary depending on the Town Hall that it belongs to .
  • Capital Gains – This is paid to the Inland Revenue. When you are Non Resident in Spain the Inland Revenue retains in every case a 3% of the money of the sale in lieu of you making your Capital Gains. If you are selling at a loss and you are uptodate with your Non Resident Tax for the last 5 years then you can claim any tax paid in excess.

Finally, other costs you might incur when selling are:

  • If there is a mortgage on the property: Mortgage cancellation costs. If you ever had a mortgage on the property and this has not been removed from the Land Registry yet then it is required that the bank goes to the Notary to sign that the received full payment for it. Later the document has to be taken to the Land Registry for them to remove the entry from the property. Both the Notary and the Land Registry will charge you for their services to cancel the mortgage. We usually need a provision of funds to pay them of 800€. If the mortgage has not been paid off yet the process is the same, only that the bank will receive the cheque on completion to redeem the outstanding amount. This cheque will be deducted from final payment to you.
  • End of building certificate: Some properties appear to be in construction at the Land Registry office, then this is certificate is required to certify that is fully finished.
  • Age Certificate or Extension Certificate: these might be required if there are current property metres are more than the ones registered.

We can provide our prices on request for acting for you with a sale!

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