This is an 'imputed' income tax which means that it is irrelevant whether or not income was derived from the property. Nice, right?
Imputed Rental Income from Residential Property
All non-resident residential property owners in Spain as of December 31st 2014 will need to make a tax return during 2015 in respect of their Spanish property. The tax rate is 24% and is applied to 1,1% of the ‘catastral’ value of the property.
The ‘catastral’ value of the property is not the same as the real value and is much lower. It is value that is calculated in order to provide a ‘tax base’ upon which tax rates are applied. The tax base increases to 2% of the catastral value if the last time the ‘catastral’ value was calculated predates 1994.
Capital Gains Derived from the Sale of Property
Tax is payable when the wealth of an individual is increased as a result of the sale of a property. In general, the amount upon which the tax rate is payable is the resultant amount from deducting the cost of acquisition from the price of sale.
The time-period within which the tax must be paid is three months from the final date on which the purchaser must pay the 3% non-resident retention to the tax office (one month from the date that the deeds were signed) i.e 4 months from the date that the deeds are signed, using Form 211.
The rate of tax payable is 21% for the 2014 period and 20% in 2015.
Important Changes for 2015
Exemption from Capital Gains realised from the sale of a residential property in Spain for reinvestment in a principal private Spanish property for EU, Icelandic and Norwegian residents, where the capital gain was realised from 1st January 2015:
For those taxpayers who are resident in a European Union country, or resident in the European Economic Area, where there is an effective exchange of personal tax data, any capital gain resultant from the sale of what was their principal private residence in Spain may be excluded from taxation whenever such gain is reinvested in a new principal private residence.
When the amount reinvested is less than the amount realised by the sale of the previous property, only that part of the capital gain that was reinvested shall be exempted from capital gains tax. If the reinvestment took place before the tax falls due to be paid, either fully or partially, this will be taken into account at such time as the tax falls due.
According to Art 33.4 of the Ley Impuestos de la Renta de las Personas Fisicas, the exemption from this tax for those over the age of 65 applies to non-residents.