Did you register your Spanish property purchase?

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THERE are many steps required to buying a property in Spain and it’s always best to ensure that you know what you are doing, buying and how to go about it.

Taking each step with the help of a lawyer is always advisable, particularly if you are not fluent in Spanish and you are not familiar with the ins and outs of purchasing a property in this country.

Once you have signed on the dotted line, handed over the cash and paid all the taxes and fees that need to be paid, there is still one more legality that must be attended to before you can finally put your feet up and relax in your new home.

And that’s registering your purchase at your nearest property registry office. It is recommended to everyone who buys a property as it could save you a lot of hassle and stress in the future if you are faced with any type of problem.

Doing this is a must if you want to safeguard your purchase and especially if you ever need to prove that the house you have just bought is legally yours. Registering the purchase will act as a guarantee of protection if your name has been logged as the owner of so-and-so house.

Although signing the title deeds or ‘escritura’ will automatically make you and name you as the new owner of the property, if you don’t register this change with the property registry office straightaway, you could find that other charges or fees, which would rank ahead of your ownership rights, could be added against the property while it still appears on the Registro list in the name of the previous owner. In the worst-case scenario, you could end up having to sell the property you have just bought in order to repay a debt that wasn’t yours!

You will also need to register your property purchase at the Registro if you are looking to take out a mortgage. This will not be possible otherwise.

It is also important to ensure that you register the purchase immediately for the following reasons:

  • To be considered as the only and true owner of the property
  • Protection against the seller’s creditors
  • Will be legally protected in any court case if the property’s ownership is in doubt or under discussion

For example, if two people buy the same property – unknowingly, of course, it doesn’t matter which of them purchased the property first, it is the one that registers the property first that will have priority over its ownership rights.

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