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Buying Property on the Costa del Sol

Buying Process

A housing deal in Spain is not quite as it would in Denmark. There are several pitfalls, and as a foreigner you tend to think "Danish" which can lead to unnecessary frustration if you have not allied yourself with a skilled broker or even become closely involved in the trading process.


As soon as you have found the property you want to buy, and the buyer and seller have reached an agreement on a trade price, the next natural step is to have the property reserved and removed from the market. This is done by paying a deposit and signing a reservation document by both parties.

The deposit amount is typically € 6.000, but can vary depending on the price of the property. As a rule, the amount is typically transferred to an account with the buyer's lawyer, who then “locks” the home, while he or she obtains all relevant property documentation. We always advise that you as a buyer contact a lawyer before you start booking a property, rather than transferring money directly to a real estate agent or seller, which can be standard practice with some realtors on the Costa del Sol.

As long as a lawyer's reservation is entered in the reservation - something we always do by default - the full reservation amount will be refunded if it turns out that the statutory conditions around the property are not met, or possibly. reservations on the part of the buyer are not met.

The reservation document, which only consists of a single A4 page, states the buyer's and seller's names, the trade price, the home's address, a desired takeover date, and finally any reservations buyer may have.

The purchase agreement

Signing a purchase agreement usually takes place 10 to 14 days after the reservation, and you can expect to pay 10-40% of the purchase amount at the same time. When buying a resale property, it is typically 10%, while the rate when buying a project sale is usually between 20 and 40% of the purchase price.

The 14 days up to, are typically used by your solicitor to requisition, review and approve all relevant documents and conditions for the property in question. Here, among other things, up on matters relating to building licenses, bank guarantees, mortgagees, ownership etc. ifm. the property.

The purchase agreement itself is very similar to the one you know from Denmark - ie a detailed contract which contains all the conditions and obligations regarding the sale of the home.

Deed writing

The deed is signed by both buyer and seller (or their legal representatives), either with or in the presence of a notary. In the same embrace, the remaining part of the purchase price is transferred. This usually happens 30-50 days after the reservation, unless otherwise agreed - e.g. a long / short takeover or similar. In the 30+ days, the buyer, seller, bank and lawyer have had enough time to prepare each one so that the property can change hands.

When buying real estate on the Costa del Sol, it is important to remember that a number of trading costs must be imposed on top of the purchase price. These are calculated as a percentage of the price entered into the home, up is distributed as follows.

Trading costs for home purchases in Spain (Costa del Sol) - resale:

  • 7% property tax (mandatory)
  • 1-2% deed and stamp duty (mandatory)
  • 1% in attorneys' fees (recommended but not required)

So 9-10% in total. However, this is without taking into account any. costs associated with financing the home purchase, through a bank or mortgage lender. This expense is typically between 0-2%.

Trading costs for home purchases in Spain (Costa del Sol) - project sale:

  • 10% VAT (mandatory)
  • 1-2% deed and stamp duty (mandatory)
  • 1% in attorneys' fees (recommended but not required)

So 12-13% in total. Again, evt. borrowing costs not included.