Owning a Property in Spain

Obligations for Spanish property owners

After purchase Spanish property owners have a number of matters they need to take into consideration each year.

Whilst for EU members there is complete freedom of movement all non residents and those to be fiscal residents have requirements under Spanish legislation they must meet.

Depending on whether you intend to live in Spain or just use your property as a holiday home or for rental will dictate what requirements you must meet.

Town hall & other taxes

All property owners should be registered at the local Town Hall whether they intend to be situated in Spain or not, this will allow the local Town to claim money from the National Government to support local amenities based on the population registered as owning a property.

You may need to consider other matters like Inheritance tax, driving in Spain, yearly taxes applicable, Heath care and buildings and content Insurances and know when any obligations you will have fall within the year.


For utilities it is normally best to have payments set up on direct debit. Each Utility company has a different timescale as to when bills are payable but unlike other countries failure to make the payment will instigate the service being cut off possibly without reminders being sent first. To be re-connected you will need to pay the bill, any late payment charges and a reconnection cost. It is important to ensure your bank account is kept in funds as most Banks do not give automatic overdraft facilities and will decline payments if funds are not available.

For the most competitive rates when transferring funds it is normally best to register with a specialized currency provider who should be able to offer better terms than the Banks.

Driving in Spain

Property buyers who intend to base themselves in Spain and who wish to drive should obtain a Spanish Driving license which is a requirement since Spain brought in a points system for driving offences. For short term visitors who are driving in Spain a Spanish license is not required but your own European license should be kept with you in the event you are stopped by the Police.

Car road tax is payable in May and June of each year if you have a Spanish plated car. Car insurance is legally required and all cars here for more than 6 months should be transferred to Spanish plates.

Residents certificates

All residents in Spain should apply for a residents certificate if they intend to spend more than 180 days in Spain consecutively. It is obligatory and advisable in Spain for everyone, resident or not to carry some form of ID with them at all times.


IBI or local council tax is payable by the end of September each year.

Income tax, yearly nonresident tax is payable by end of June and is applicable whether you are generating an income from your property or not.

Health Care

If you intend to live in Spain and pay social security are over retirement age you will have access to the National Health Service but will need to register, for those not paying social security, or not over the age of retirement, Private Health insurance should be considered. For non EU members who wish to live in Spain Private Health Care will be pre-requisite of a residency visa.

For an overview of what you should consider before buying in Spain contact us today.