Have you decided to finally make the decision and buy a property in Spain?

Have you decided to finally make the decision and buy a property in Spain?


The Comaskey family have lived and worked in La Zenia since 1998 and we know how to help make you move to Spain go as smoothly as possible. Comaskey, our Estate Agency arm is known as the Costa Blanca’s friendliest Estate Agent. We could replace the word “Friendly” with professional, efficient and/or caring- You choose which ever word you prefer!!

Here are a few tips, in no particular order we think you should look at before buying that dream home in Spain….

Use a solicitor to take care of all the paperwork aspects, as they are a minefield in Spain. We recommend Spanish Solutions www.spanishsolutions.net – of course we do. That’s said we work with Rafael Carrasco, Jose Maria at Sun lawyers, Molina Solicitors obviously and most of the major legal firms on the Costa Blanca.


Register on the Town Hall electoral roll (Padron). The town hall on the Orihuela Costa is next to Mercadona in Playa Flamenca.


Apply for an NIE number (identification number for foreigners). You will need it to buy a property, car, take out insurance, everything really. Its free but you can pay a third party to stand in line, fill in the documentation and pick it up for you – money well spent!!


Apply for your Residencia, if you are going to be living full time in Spain. There are major tax implications to this and our tax advisor Alex Sanchez will walk you through them.


If your country has a reciprocal health agreement with Spain, apply for a S1 form. If not covered by the Social Security system, it is essential to take out a private medical plan- Ibex insurance next to our Flores 1 Office is the place, Jaimy is the girl to speak to about private health insurance.


If your car has a foreign registration, remove it from Spain or change the registration to Spanish plates. As well as being a sure way to get stopped by the Guardia Civil at every checkpoint, you legally need to register it here.

Exchange your driving licence for a Spanish one- the police are checking and clamping down hard on this one.


Pay the Town Hall taxes every year (IBI Rates, Road Tax, etc.). Ana in Spanish Solutions is your friend here. Did you know that when you sell, you are entitled to your 3% retention tax refund only if you are up to date with your local taxes?


Pay annually the Income Tax Declaration to the Taxation Office (Non Resident or Resident). See above!!


If you are considering improvements to your house, either inside or outside, you must apply for a Building Licence at the Orihuela Costa town hall. We work with Antonio in Spanish Solutions our favourite architect. He is very reasonable and will tell you in advance what the Town Hall will approve, long before you start digging foundations to the new extension.


To open a business, you must have an Opening Licence from the Town Hall and ensure your premises conform to all health, safety and legal requirements. Although there is a considerable amount of red tape, it’s easier to open a business in Spain, in our opinion, than in most other European countries.


All those who own a property in Spain should have a Spanish will in addition to one in their country, to avoid possible complications. Do this when you buy your house rather than after something has happened- remind your lawyers.


Most of the local authorities and administration centres only speak Spanish. It is advisable therefore to be accompanied by someone who speaks fluent Spanish when you need to communicate with them. Even the ones in the Town Hall who speak English will refuse to do so!! Get used to it!

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To help you enjoy your new property in Spain to the full and not encounter any bad experiences, we suggest the following:

Find the right Estate Agent- one of our marketing drivers recently said that “Finding the right Estate Agent in Spain is just as important as finding the right house” – My feeling is, finding the right Spanish Estate Agent is the very most important move you have to make when buying a house in Spain.


Ensure that the property or land that you want to buy has a title deed (Escritura). If it doesn’t have a title deed, it could cause you numerous problems and the need to undergo many different processes to rectify the omissions. Use a solicitor such as Spanish Solutions to immediately check out any property you may wish to buy.


It is necessary that there is a First Occupation Licence issued for your house. This means that it is legal and has complied with all the conditions necessary to classify it as a habitable dwelling. The Planning Department will advise whether or not you can build, as well as the size and number of levels that are permitted. The construction regulations always depend on where the land is situated- this is another job for Spanish Solutions.


The Land Registry office will inform you or your legal team of the name of the owner and if the property has an embargo, mortgage or outstanding debts. Your solicitor must apply for a Nota Simple to check that the property is free of charges. For this you need to indicate the complete address of the house or the name of the owner if it refers to land.


After the purchase of a property, and to ensure that the sale has total validity, the title deed will be registered in the Land Registry. The amount you pay will depend on the declared price in the title deed. Your solicitors will assist with all of this process. Your job is to enjoy Spain, there job is to make sure you are doing so fully registered!


The Plusvalía is a Town Hall tax and it is paid only at the time of purchasing a property. It depends on the rateable value of the property and on the number of years which have elapsed since the last sale. To obtain the exact amount payable, please talk to Tracie and she’ll help coordinate it.


Community of Owners: If your property belongs to a community, you should find out who the Administrator is in order to notify the change of name. The Community has a yearly meeting and elects a president, vice and treasurer. Together they decide on rules around the neighbourhood relating to communal areas, pools, security etc.

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Find the best Agent in the region- An agent who is visible online, advertising on portals like Zoopla, Right move etc. Your selling Agent should be legal. Sounds obvious right? You’ll be amazed at the numbers of sellers who use illegal Street agents, to save the commission, end up taking less than the property is worth and then paying some registered agent like Comaskey to fix the mistakes the other guy made! Our advice is get it right first time!

When you wish to sell your property, you must pay taxes to the Public Treasury (Hacienda) for the profits obtained from the sale…. The well documented Capital Gains Tax! The profits correspond to the difference in price that features in your purchase title deed and your sale title deed.


We as foreigners are lazy about registering in the town hall and that’s a mistake. The electoral roll gives the number of inhabitants in a municipality, such as Orihuela Costa, and this is of great importance, since the economic contributions from the central and regional government to the Town Hall are based on the number of registered inhabitants in the town. These funds are to provide town services i.e. local police, doctors, schools, cleaning, Lighting, infrastructure etc. Therefore, the more registered inhabitants, the more money will be granted to the Town Hall for these services.


These are just a few points we think you should consider before you purchase your home in Spain.

If you need any assistance, please contact Amanda [email protected] or Tracie in our Flores 1 office in La Zenia; [email protected]


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