Spain is a popular holiday destination and with good reason. The country has some of the most stunning beaches in Europe, the weather is fantastic (mostly), and there’s plenty to do for both adults and kids. But if you’re thinking about buying your own holiday home in Spain, it is best to do your homework first. While buying a holiday home is similar to buying a property in Spain. This blog will discuss things specifically related to buying a holiday home.
Why buy a holiday home in Spain
Spain is an excellent destination for holiday home buyers, and the country has plenty to offer for both adults and children. But there are other reasons why you may want to invest in an apartment or villa in Spain.
- The weather: The Mediterranean climate means that the summers (June to September) are hot and sunny, and winters (November – April) can be chilly with mild temperatures. In the summer, temperatures in Spain often go well over 30°C and can be as high as 45°C in July and August in inland areas.
- The houses: There is an extensive range of options for buying a holiday home in Spain. Depending on your budget and preferences, you can opt for a townhouse, country house, apartment, or even a villa.
- The price: The property market in Spain has fallen sharply since the crisis, so prices are very affordable compared to other places. For example, you can buy a luxury villa with a private pool for as little as € 250.000. There are also great opportunities for renovation works or plots of land for building your own holiday home.
- The beach: There are numerous beautiful stretches of coast in Spain, from the Costa Brava to the Andalusia Coast. The shores have a lot to offer in activities, restaurants and shops.
- The freedom: You can go to your holiday home at any time of year, and you don’t need to worry about finding transportation or fighting the crowds when you’re on holiday in Spain.
- A Spanish Visa: When you buy property above € 500.000 you can get the Golden Visa Spain. This gives you access to the Schengen area.
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The downsides of buying a holiday home in Spain
Reasons to not buy a holiday home are:
- The bureaucracy: Buying or selling a property is quite complicated in Spain.
- The economy: There is still a great deal of uncertainty about the Spanish economy. However, this is slowly changing, and there are lots of positive signs, such as lower unemployment figures and an increase in foreign investment.
- Insurance problems: It can be tricky to get an annual insurance policy for homes that are empty most of the time, so this needs to be considered.
- Property taxes: For example, you need to pay municipal tax when you own a property in Spain, and failure to do so can result in huge fines and even jail time. Inform yourself about the tax laws in Spain before you buy!
- Vacant homes: Many properties stand empty throughout the year. Unfortunately, this means that there is a risk of vandalism and theft. Next to this, Spain is not happy with empty homes and combating this with regulations.
- Reliable agent: Make sure you use a reliable real estate agent with the required knowledge and expertise.
- Property scams: Unfortunately, some fraudsters go to great lengths to scam holiday home buyers.
How to find the perfect location for your dream holiday house in Spain
Now you may be ready to buy a holiday home in Spain. You’ve read about the many reasons why it’s great to own a property there, but where should you start? Below are some ideas on how to find your dream location in Spain.
Consider the city:
Some people want to live near the beach, and others prefer the quiet countryside. If you’re unsure what you like, it can be a good idea to visit some cities first and decide if it’s really for you.
Consider what you want to do in your future holiday home:
Do you want to relax on the beach or by your private pool? Are you interested in history and culture? You can find accommodation for every type of holiday. Just make sure that you know what you like before looking for a location because this will make it much easier to choose.
Research the location and surrounding area at different times:
It’s difficult to get a good impression of an area if you visit it in high season when everything is hectic, busy and overcrowded. It would help if you also considered visiting the site at other times of the year (for example, spring or fall) to see how it looks like outside of tourist season. It can be surprising what you’ll find.
Look for a place that is close to an airport:
If you want to visit your holiday home with short travel times, this is something to keep in mind when looking for the ideal location. Just make sure you are not too close to an airport, because you do not want to hear planes all the time.
Pick a neighbourhood that has convenient amenities like restaurants and grocery stores:
The location of your future holiday home is essential because it directly affects the value and resale value. Research the area where you want to buy a vacation home in Spain. If there are not many amenities like restaurants and grocery stores, this might be something you need to consider before moving!
Consider the landscape:
Spain is a country with beautiful landscapes, so this should be one of the essential things you consider when looking for the perfect location. Mountains, hills, plains, beaches and historic towns are just some examples of what you can find in Spain. It depends on what type of holiday home experience you’re looking for!
Check out what people live nearby:
It’s also important to pay attention to the people who live in your neighbourhood. When looking for the ideal location, you don’t want to buy a holiday home near noisy or rude neighbours, so keep that in mind.
How do I find a property to buy in Spain:
There are a couple of ways to find your ideal property. In general, visit the area you want to purchase in, search online through listings, or hire an estate agent.
Visit the area:
Although it isn’t the most efficient way to look for a property, you can visit the area and go from place to place. That way, you’ll get an excellent overall impression of what is available. Just make sure that you have a plan before going on your search, and this will make things much easier!
Search through listings online:
There are a lot of great websites that can provide you with information on properties for sale. You’ll find lots of information and pictures, which will help you make your decision. The most important thing is to know what you’re looking for and not be afraid to ask questions! It’s much easier to find the perfect place if you have all the information. Examples of real estate sites are habitaclia.com, fotocasa.es, and idealista.com.
Hire an estate agent:
If there aren’t many listings in the area you want to buy a property, hiring an estate agent can be a good idea. They know their way around, and they’ll find the perfect place for you. Don’t hesitate to ask them; they should always provide honest feedback!
From our experience, it is best to hire an estate agent in combination with a lawyer to find a property when you don’t speak the language. The estate agent will help you find the property, while the independent lawyer will protect you. The savings you make by having insiders will be more than covered by the risk of the extra cost involved in making the purchase.
Hiring a property lawyer when a Spanish holiday home
When you are buying a holiday home in Spain, it is recommended to get a Spanish property lawyer involved. It is important to find a lawyer that speaks your language and has experience in the region where you want to buy. This way, there won’t be any unexpected problems or issues! It’s also best to make sure the lawyer is independent; you don’t want them to represent the owner. The lawyer can do a large variety of tasks for you, including:
- Negotiating the price and terms with the owner means that they will try to lower the cost and/or include services in the contract.
- Making sure all legal documents are in order: This is more complicated than it sounds. Basically, an estate agent or lawyer will make sure everything is according to Spanish law. If there are any irregularities in the contract, they will let you know about it.
- Inspect the property: The lawyer also ensures that everything is in order and that there aren’t any hidden costs or problems with the building. This is a crucial step! Don’t think twice about spending a bit more to do this part properly.
- Arrange the payment: The lawyer should make sure that all payments are made according to the contract and that you have proof of this. This prevents any misunderstandings or disagreements later on.
- Inspections during your holiday homeownership: In some cases, it is also necessary for a lawyer to inspect the property from time to time. This is mainly the case if you have problems with the building, for example, if it needs maintenance work. However, this is only necessary in some exceptional cases and mostly depends on your contract and what you agree upon.
It’s always best to be careful when buying a property in another country! Make sure that you know all about the property and that everything is done according to the law. We also have a blog about property lawyer services for UK citizens.
What type of holiday home properties are there in Spain?
Many different regions of Spain have their unique character and charm, and they range from the mountains of the Pyrenees to the sunny beaches along the Costa del Sol. You can find a lot of different types of property, depending on what kind of holiday home experience you’re looking for. A few examples are:
- Beach properties: If your idea of a perfect holiday is laying under an umbrella on some beautiful white sand, then buying a beach house is the way to go. Many people like to buy holiday homes in Spain due to the fantastic beaches and warm climate.
- Mountain properties: Are you more into hiking and mountain biking? Then this might be what you’re looking for! Mountains are truly iconic in Spain, and there are plenty of opportunities for you to explore.
- Town/city properties: Many lovely historic towns are perfect for a quiet getaway. The excellent public transportation system makes it easy to visit things like museums and art galleries without having to use your own car.
What should you look out for when buying a property abroad?
Although it can be very exciting to buy a holiday home in Spain, there are certain things you should consider beforehand. Here are some of the most important ones:
- Language barriers: The language barrier can make it difficult to communicate with people you’re not familiar with. If this is something that concerns you, make sure the estate agents or lawyer you’re working with speak your language. Otherwise, you might want to make sure that someone in your family or a friend speaks the language and can help out in case of an emergency.
- Legal issues: Buying a property abroad is similar to buying one in Spain, but there are also some important differences. Make sure always to ask your lawyer or estate agent what you should be aware of. If they don’t seem to know the answer, it might be best to hire someone else.
- Insurance: Having a Spanish holiday home can provide you with great memories for many years to come, but there are some additional costs involved as well. Holiday homes can be easily exposed to bad weather, thief’s, and utility issues. That is why it’s essential to make sure your property is insured, and this will protect you in case anything happens.
The Spanish property market is strong and offers good rental opportunities
The Spanish property market is becoming stronger every year. One of the main reasons is the tourism boom throughout Spain. The country has become a popular holiday destination, which has led to more demand for properties. On top of that, prices are rising as well!
There are many different things you can do with your Spanish property after making the purchase. You can choose to live in it yourself or rent it out. If you choose to live on your property, you will be able to enjoy all the comforts of home while on holiday.
If you decide to rent it out, there are many different ways to do this as well! You can put the house on AirBnB or similar websites, and it will be rented out to tourists immediately. Or, you can go with an ordinary tenant and rent the property through an estate agency, for example.
Spanish Rental income tax
When you rent out your holiday home, you will pay income tax (IRPF). Make sure you know the ins and outs when it comes to rental income tax in Spain when you plan on renting out your holiday home.
Popular locations for buying a holiday home in Spain
Many foreigners like to buy a holiday home in popular tourist locations such as:
Costa del Sol: The coastal region is famous for its fantastic weather and beaches. Costa del Sol has become one of the most popular holiday destinations for people all over Europe, which means there’s lots of demand for properties! Although it can be difficult to find affordability, many opportunities are available.
Costa Tropical: The Costa Tropical is between the Sierra Nevada mountains and the Mediterranean Sea. It’s a trendy holiday destination for Europeans during spring and autumn because of its great weather and affordability. There aren’t as many property options here as on the coast, but you can still find some fantastic deals.
Costa Blanca: Costa Blanca is a popular destination for holiday home buyers from the UK and Ireland. This area has a fantastic climate, lots of coastline, and many beaches. It’s challenging to find affordability here due to high demand from tourists, but there are still some great deals to be found!
Galicia: Galicia is a dream location for nature lovers and people who love fishing. It’s one of the best places in Europe to fish and is perfect for people who enjoy sailing. Although it can be difficult to get around, it’s a truly special place.
Andalucia: In Andalucia, you will find some of the most culturally-rich cities in the world. This region is what you might call a hidden gem in southern Spain, which means it’s becoming more and more popular with holiday home buyers across Europe! It also has great weather throughout the year, especially in places like Almeria and Malaga.
Catalonia: Catalonia is located to the north of Spain and is home to the city of Barcelona. This region is excellent for people looking for an affordable holiday home near a famous European city. Although it has become more expensive over recent years, you can still find some bargains if you’re willing to look around!
Sierra Nevada: Sierra Nevada is another hidden gem that’s located in the southeast of Spain. It offers breathtaking views and is home to one of Europe’s highest peaks, the Mulhacen (the third-largest in the Iberian peninsula). This area has a fantastic climate, and if you’re looking for affordability, this might be right for you!
Balearic Islands: The Balearic Islands are famous for their fantastic weather, beaches, and warm water. They’re most popular with holiday home buyers from the UK and Ireland because of their popularity among British tourists. Due to high demand, there aren’t many places where you can find affordability in this region. Cities you can find there are Ibiza, Mallorca and Menorca.
The Canary Islands: The Canary Islands are located off the coast of Morocco and are popular among Europeans who like to escape to warmer climates during the winter. The best time to buy in the Canary Islands is when you’re ready for somewhere new in your life because they’re not always very affordable!
There are many different regions to choose from when you want to buy a holiday home in Spain. The most popular regions are Costa Blanca, Costa del Sol, Costa Tropical, Andalucía and the Balearic Islands.
What are the costs associated with buying a holiday home in Spain
The costs will depend on several things, including your budget and the area you want to buy in. Costs can include notary fees, registration fees, transfer taxes, exchange rate expenses, and stamp duty.
The average cost of buying a holiday home is around 10% – 15% of the purchase price. This means that if you’re buying an apartment for 200,000€, then your expenses will be at least 20,000€.
Why you should consider purchasing off-plan properties for sale in Spain
Most properties for sale in Spain are second-hand, with only a small percentage being newly built. This means that you can purchase a home at a much lower price than if it were to be made today.
Moreover, most new-builds are built-in popular coastal areas, which means they’re costly. You can save thousands of Euros by purchasing off-plan properties for sale in less exclusive regions. However there are many legalities and pitfalls involved when buying an off-plan property, so, it is best to get a lawyer involved.
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Disclaimer: Information on this page may be incomplete or outdated. Under no circumstances should the information listed be considered professional legal advice. We highly recommend seeking guidance from a legal expert if you lack extensive knowledge or experience dealing with any of the procedures outlined in these articles.