Property For Sale Tenerife

Your guide to property for sale in Tenerife. Insider information from people who live there.

Buying Tenerife property is not overly difficult but there are a number of differences in legal procedures compared to the UK and a couple of pitfalls that you really must be aware of. We have therefore put together some information, which we hope will assist you if you decide to buy property in Tenerife. Please note this is not professional advice just a general guide, always seek the assistance of a Spanish property lawyer if you are serious about buying a property.

How will a Spanish lawyer help me with buying a property in Tenerife?

Ensure you use the services of a reputable local lawyer (abogado). Only a lawyer will know of all the checks that should be made before you part with any money and are therefore essential. Firstly obtain an estimate of legal fees and disbursement including the fees of the Notary, the property registry and the power of attorney. Confirm who is responsible for payment of the Notary's fees and any capital gains tax, which may arise from the sale. Ask your lawyer to confirm to you in writing that there is no mortgage or other charge or encumbrance registered on the property you are intending to buy, that it is registered in the name of the seller, and that there are no outstanding local taxes or capital gains tax. This is very important as in Spain if the property has any kind of debt it is automatically passed onto the new owner. Once the property sale is completed ask your lawyer to obtain a certificate from the registry to prove you are now the new owner.

What is a Notary, what do they do?

You will also need to use the services of a Notary Public. They are an official of the state whose job is to ensure that all transactions requiring the participation of a Notary are in the proper form. The Notary is not acting for you, and will not give you any advice. The parties to a sale and purchase have to appear in person before the Notary at the same time. If you do not want to appear in person, you can give power of attorney (in the Spanish form) to a lawyer etc. to represent you.

What extra charges will I have to pay to purchase property in Tenerife?

There are a lot of extra charges involved when purchasing a property in Spain. It is therefore advisable to get your legal representative to go through each of these costs with you before going ahead with the purchase of a property. We have noted some of the costs involved but as a general guide it is best to allow about 10% of the purchase price to cover charges.

You will obviously have the fees to pay for the solicitor/lawyer, the amount of which differs from company to company and also depends on how much time and work will be involved in the purchase of your property. The Notary also charges a fee for preparing the Title Deeds (Escritura) and for registering the property in the name of the new owners.

What taxes will I need to pay?

There is a transfer tax payable, which is at present 6% if you are purchasing a resale property or 5% if you are purchasing a new property from a developer. Another tax payable is the Plus Valia, which is the Spanish equivalent of the capital gains tax. Under Spanish law the seller is liable to pay this tax, however as payment of this is not usually required until long after the property sale is complete, it is often difficult to get the seller to pay it, if the seller can be found. This is unfortunate, as this will then be charged against the property, which will mean the new owner is liable! It is therefore important you ensure your legal representative organizes this at the time the purchase is completed.

Is it necessary to get documents translated?

Unless you speak and more importantly can read Spanish, always have documents translated for you by someone you can trust. The expense of having lengthy documents, e.g. title deeds translated is worth the cost to ensure you understand fully what the original Spanish documents say and mean.

Here are a couple of Interpreters/Translators available in Tenerife, which we have noted from a list provided by the British Consulate. A full list can be obtained from the British Consulate in Tenerife. Please note that we take no responsibility for the competence or probity of any of these persons or firms, nor for the consequences of using their translation or interpreting services.

Mönica Smeding Kuyten
C/Pitera 5
Apts. Ikarus
Urb. La Paz
Puerto de la Cruz
Telephone: 0034 922375023
Fax: 0034 922384752

London School of English
Pueblo Canario 1-A4
Playa de Las Americas
Telephone: 0034 922791606
Fax: 0034 922751941

The British Consulates contact details are:
Playa Weyler 8-1
Telephone: 0034 922286863
Fax: 0034 922289903

Where can I find more information on buying property in Tenerife?

If you are considering buying a property in Tenerife you may wish to seek advice from the Institute of Foreign Property Owners. Their contact details are:
Avenida de L'Alt Rei En Jaume 1,
No.15, 2º, Pta.9, Aptdo. de Correos 418,
03590 Altea,
Telephone: 0034 965842312,
fax: 0034 965841589.

The institute also publishes a book entitled "Your home in Spain" which should prove of interest.

For further information on buying a property in Spain and Tenerife, Amazon offer a good selection of books covering where best to look for property for sale Tenerife, to what legal requirements and paper work are needed. Find them Here!

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