In February 2016 legislation was approved by the Andalucian Government making mandatory the issuing of tourist rental licenses in this part of Spain. The objective was supposedly to regulate the letting by owners of property in Andalucía to tourists for short-stay holidays i.e. tourist rentals.
The legislation is the Decreto 28/2016, de 2 de febrero, de las viviendas con fines turísticos. This effectively means that anyone in the business of tourist rentals in this part of Spain will need to obtain a licence.
The new legislation is an attempt to fill a legal no-man’s-land such that short term lets of private houses were not regulated and permitted those carrying-out such activity to avoid payment of any taxes as are payable on such income. In our opinion, the sole reason that the government has enacted the legislation is to increase the payment of taxes in this sector of the economy.
Exceptions to Registration
It is important to be aware that the new legislation permits some exceptions, such as:
- Houses let for vacations, where no monies change hands.
- Houses let for more than two months in a row.
- Houses located in rural areas, which are regulated by Law 13/2011, and Decree 20/2002.
- Residential buildings with three or more houses, run by the same person, which will be regulated by Decree 194/2010.
The new legislation states that either the whole property or part (i.e. particular rooms in the property) may be let, and in the latter case case the owner must also be living in the property.
The capacity or number of persons who may let the property at any one time will depend on the individual house and in a document issued by the Town Hall known as the “licencia de primera ocupación”, but in any case no more than fifteen people may rent the property at one time, if the entire property is rented-out, and no more than six people if the property is rented by rooms (never more than four people per room).
The most important part of the legislation relates to the requirement that all properties that are let for holiday vacations must be inscribed in a Tourism Registry. The Decree provides that inspections will take place and that the owners of any property in which this activity is taking place, and that is not registered, will be liable to a fine of between 2001 € to 18,000 €.
Summing up, anyone advertising a property in Andalucía for vacation lettings should register the property in the Tourism Registry immediately to avoid sanctions, unless it is believed that one of the exceptions mentioned in the legislation applies. Advocate Abroad can assist you with making an application for a tourist rental licence in Spain.
In order to avoid such problems when purchasing a property, you should consider hiring an independent solicitor who can check to ensure that the property you are purchasing can be rented to tourists. For more useful information read: how an independent solicitor can save you a fortune when investing in property in Spain and buying a house in Spain.