Precautions to take when Buying a Recently Constructed Property in Spain

  • Rosa
    Rosa
    Rosa is an experienced English-speaking lawyer in Mallorca and provides expert legal advice and assistance in the following legal areas: Property conveyances, Inheritance, Family, Criminal, Business, Employment and Tax law.
It is not uncommon for property purchasers in Spain to come across the situation where the property that they are interested in purchasing does not appear to be registered in the Land Registry. This often happens where the person they are buying from had previously acquired the land and then built the property themselves from scratch. 

So, how can the purchasers be certain that they will acquire good title, without the possibility of problems with reselling the property in the future?

Public Notary

In the first place, in order that the new build property may be added to the registry, the vendor of the property must draft a document before a Public Notary, called the ‘New Build Notice Deed’ (escritura de declaración de obra nueva).

To be legally protected, it is recommended that the buyer insists that the seller ensures that the actual situation is reflected in the Land Registry, ie that a property has been constructed on the land. Where the seller is an individual, it is additionally vital to arrange deeds for the new build construction in order for the purchaser to register the title in the Land Registry.
Thus, the vendor, once they have obtained the ‘Finalised Project’ certificate, ought to visit the Public Notary with the requisite municipal licences to demonstrate that this new build construction conforms to the planning permission previously granted and, therefore, to the local urban planning Acts. They must also present a certificate issued by a registered architect that shall include the surface area and other relevant measurements of the construction.

In Mallorca (and by extendion, Ibiza) it is also obligatory for the vendor to provide a ‘habitability certificate’ (cédula de habitabilidad) or ‘first occupation certifcate’ ( primera ocupación), whichever is relevant, as well as the Energy Certificate, the latter as a result of the applicable European Union directives.

Finally, the vendor is obliged to declare in the property deeds a price or value for the new build construction, which will effectively be the same as the sales price, with the former perhaps slightly lower. Once the new build construction has been processed by the Notary, the property deeds may be inscribed at the Land Registry.

Nota Simple
In summary, the purchaser must be very sure that – even before signing a private agreement to purchase or option to purchase – that the new build construction has been registered at the Land Registry. If it hasn’t, there is every possibility that the operation could fail or be delayed interminably. By arranging a ‘basic land certifcate’ or ‘nota simple’ of the property from the Land Registry we are able to verify the regulatory status of a new build construction.
With regard to the Notary and Registry costs relating to the filing and registration of the new construction, typically these are met by the vendor of the property. This point however, can be freely negotiated between the parties to the purchase therefore, it is highly recommended ensure that in the private purchase contract (ie from the get-go) those costs are explicitly assigned to the relevant party.

Finally, it is important to bear in mind that it is possible for the vendor to arrange for the issue of the property deeds relating to the new build construction simultaneously with the signing of the purchase deeds by the purchaser (of course in a separate document), if it is convenient to get everything arranged in advance, in writing, since until the Registry proceeds to inscribe the the new build deeds, it is not possible to register the new title to the property.

Client Testimonials

Below is a list of recent reviews received from our clients, obtained via the Wufoo client survey platform:

  • Default Avatar75
    David W Baker, Malaga
    Tuesday, November 06, 2018
    We were extremely satisfied with Alvaro: He explained the law to us and gave us a solution to our problem. He could not have been more helpful and we will definitely use him again.
  • Default Avatar75
    Thom Koller, London
    Monday, November 05, 2018
    Francisca provided a perfect service!

    She is professional, dedicated and took care to understand the needs of my situation. Her service offers exceptional value for money and gives complete peace o...f mind.
  • Default Avatar75
    Michael O'Sullivan, Ibiza
    Thursday, November 01, 2018
    Understanding Spanish law regarding buying and selling properties is a minefield for English speakers. Cristina provided the legal expertise, the translation of legal documents, explanations for all i...ssues, and solutions for our challenges.

    Also, she provides confidence and reassurance that what we are doing is in our best interests and within the law - very important when working in a foreign country.

    In summary, she is an excellent professional that we are so pleased we found and will continue to use for all our legal matters.

    I think you have a perfect solution for supporting people abroad. I was lucky to find you on the internet. Perhaps you could promote your services to all estate agents abroad, so more people can get access to your service when buying or selling abroad.
  • Default Avatar75
    Colin Wilson, Australia
    Tuesday, October 30, 2018
    Overall it was great. Rosa always answered all questions asked and provided clear, concise and well explained answers.

    When there was a delay in responding she did offer an apology which was appre...ciated. Rosa always instilled a sense of confidence that she knew exactly what was going on, what I was asking, and what the applicable law was.

    When not a Spanish local and dealing with her remotely, this provided great comfort in a sensitive matter.
  • Default Avatar75
    Campbell Reynolds, Spain
    Monday, October 22, 2018
    We were very satisfied with the service provided by our lawyer Sabela.

    She was very accomodating, quick response to everything while thinking outside the box for solutions. Also, her English was mo...re or less fluent.
  • Default Avatar75
    David Edwards, England
    Wednesday, October 17, 2018
    Very Satisfied with the service provided by Oliver. He was quick, efficient and value for money. Would definitely recommend to friends.
  • Default Avatar75
    Andrew Morecroft, Lubrin
    Monday, October 15, 2018
    Juan was extremely helpful during every part of the purchase. As I was buying an older property there were slight complications but Juan explained every issue and managed to work through the difficult...ies with supreme efficiency.

    Also there was a ridiculous situation with my Spanish bank account where I could not access the money even though it was in the account. Thankfully I had given Juan power of attorney and he managed to sort-out the problem.

    He went above and beyond the call of duty and I am very grateful for all his help. I would strongly recommend him to anyone looking to buy in the Almeria region.
  • Default Avatar75
    Manoochehr Jafari-Nahad, UAE
    Saturday, October 13, 2018
    Jose-Antonio was extremely helpful and prompt and also it was helpful that he could be contacted via social media like Whatsapp
  • Default Avatar75
    Michele Jansen van Vuuren, Benajarafe
    Saturday, October 13, 2018
    Alvaro was extremely helpful, he couldn't have done more. Very quick to respond to my query.

    Only issue was that some of the documents I needed to provide were not mentioned. However, would defini...tely recommend his services to friends.
  • Default Avatar75
    John Fraser Dunfield, San Francisco
    Friday, October 12, 2018
    Good understanding. Applied sufficient pressure as needed to get the issue resolved. Reasonable charge for service provided. Would definitely recommend this service to friends.
  • Default Avatar75
    Rosemarie Byrne and John Cooper, Dublin Ireland
    couple
    Tuesday, October 09, 2018
    We found Francisca extremely helpful with a great amount of knowledge about buying a house and re-locating to Spain.
  • Default Avatar75
    Jane Evanson, London, UK
    female
    Tuesday, October 09, 2018
    Francisco was very helpful and professional. I was very happy with the advice and service.
  • Default Avatar75
    David McChesney, Puerto Banus
    Wednesday, October 03, 2018
    Alvaro was very professional, Knowledgeable of the subject at hand, did not over-charge - in fact cut costs in the best way for me. Very efficient in the entire process. Thank you.
  • Default Avatar75
    Martha Kimes, Scottsdale, Arizona USA
    female
    Tuesday, October 02, 2018
    Francisco was incredibly responsive (and quickly).

    Unlike American attorneys (and I know, because I am one), he didn't even bill me for a few follow-up emails/calls that he made on my behalf which... he easily could have done.

    I was supremely happy with his legal services.
  • Default Avatar75
    David Roots, England
    Monday, October 01, 2018
    We were very satisfied with the service we received. Rosa dealt with the matter in hand promptly and efficiently.
  • Default Avatar75
    David Knors, Barcelona
    Wednesday, September 26, 2018
    Oscar was very kind, professional and fair. He was able to help me with my problem and he was very determined that he would.

    Oscar is very competent, polite and showed a lot of effort to solve my ...problem. I strongly recommend him.
  • Default Avatar75
    Tauri, Estonia
    female
    Tuesday, September 25, 2018
    Very satisfied with the service. Francisco is bilingual English-Spanish and was always quick to respond and was very professional at all times.
  • Default Avatar75
    Mohamed kheder, Dublin, Ireland
    Monday, September 24, 2018
    Every thing was great ... Rosa was really helpful and understanding. And I see the value for money was good enough.. of course I would recommend it to any of my friends.

    And I would like to have th...e chance to thank Rosa and the whole company for everything.
  • Default Avatar75
    Daniel Elias, New York
    Tuesday, September 18, 2018
    Excellent service, delivered exactly as promised, and at half the cost a different translator had requested for the same project!
  • Default Avatar75
    Darren & Gemma Nesbitt, Valencia
    Tuesday, September 11, 2018
    Inmaculada has been of excellent service to us, as a family and in helping to set up a business in Spain. She has now undertaking several project for us and has delivered high quality on all of them. ...Perfect service!
  • Default Avatar75
    Patsy Valentin, Granada
    Tuesday, September 11, 2018
    Extremely accommodating and highly professional and very pro active. Excellent result and service. Highly recommended.
  • Default Avatar75
    Jovie, Malaga
    Wednesday, September 05, 2018
    My lawyer Alvaro was extremely helpful and very efficient. I would definitely recommend his services to friends.
  • Default Avatar75
    Albert Roldan, France
    Tuesday, September 04, 2018
    Alfonso was extremely helpful, particularly since we requested a quick turnaround for the 18 documents needing to be translated from English and French to Spanish.

    He was fluent in our phone conver...sations and email correspondence, he never misunderstood what our requirements were. He was was clear in explaining how this process works and what the price included.

    I would highly recommend him to anyone needing these services.
  • Default Avatar75
    David Grundy, UK
    Friday, August 24, 2018
    Jose was very polite and we received an excellent service from him. Nothing was to much trouble and his communication was 2nd to none. Highly recommended!
  • Default Avatar75
    Mario Klappholz, Miami, Florida
    Thursday, August 16, 2018
    Inma was very helpful, always happy to assist. I particularly appreciated her professionalism. I would not hesitate to recommend her services to friends.
  • Default Avatar75
    Daniel Spitzhorn, Spain
    Tuesday, August 14, 2018
    Miguel in Oviedo helped us during the process of buying a flat in Asturias. He was just brilliant!
  • Default Avatar75
    Tracey Iliffe Bradley, UK
    female
    Tuesday, August 14, 2018
    Rosa dealt with everything efficiently and promptly and went beyond our expectations by helping us to open a Spanish bank account and deal with other minutiae.
  • Default Avatar75
    Erslaan Ahmed, Bangladesh
    Friday, August 10, 2018
    Gave very good advice and provided an excellent solution. Inma is very professional in her work. I would recommend her services to friends.
  • Default Avatar75
    John Ryan, Derby, England
    Wednesday, August 08, 2018
    A perfect relationship between client and professional. Nothing was too much trouble.

    Went over and above his job and more. I would only use his services if I need legal services. I were very lucky... to find Jose first time round.

    Thank you jose
  • Default Avatar75
    Robert Brownlee, Almeria, Spain
    Wednesday, August 08, 2018
    Everything was as it should be: excellent. Had to pay by bank transfer and maybe would have liked another means of paying.

Send Us Your Enquiry

Select Office

Select Office

Select Office

Select Office

Select Office

Select Office

Select Office

Select Office

Select Office

Select Office

Select Office

Choose Files