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One of the topics our clients ask about when they’re buying a property in Spain is the non-residents wealth and income tax. To help answer some of these queries, we’ve compiled a quick checklist of questions and answers.

What is this tax?

An annual tax levied by the Spanish Tax Office on all non-resident owners of Spanish property. Read more about the tax.

Do I have to pay it?

Yes, it’s a fiscal obligation for all owners of Spanish property.

What happens if I do not pay it?

You’re liable for full payment of the tax, and will probably also be required to pay interest and a fine of 20 per cent of the unpaid amount.

Will the Spanish Tax Office chase me for the tax if I don’t pay?


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Making a Spanish will is a straightforward process, but a surprising number of foreigners who buy Spanish property never get round to making a will. Here are five compelling reasons why a Spanish will should be one of your top priorities.

A Spanish will:

  • makes the inheritance process cheaper for your heirs.
  • makes the inheritance process quicker for your heirs.
  • makes the inheritance process easier for your heirs.
  • means your heirs will not generally have to apply for an extension for tax            payment.
  • gives you peace of mind that your affairs in Spain are in order.

We always advise our clients to make sure they have a will in Spain that clearly states how they wish to distribute their assets.

Information: Courtesy of

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Since the 1st. of June 2013, according to Royal Decree 235/2013, in Spain it is legally required for sellers or landlords of a property to be able to present an Energy Performance Certificate (Certificado de Eficiencia Energética) With this, Spain aligns with legislation already in force in other European countries. Spanish homes built after 2007 already must have them, but now also for the owners of older homes it is mandatory to obtain this certificate.

What is an Energy Performance Certificate? (Certificado de Eficiencia Energética)?
The certificate, a document drawn up by a qualified architect or engineer, indicates the corresponding energy value of the property. The result of the energy consumption for the different climate systems for heating and cooling, on one hand and the insulation values ​​of the exterior walls, windows, ventilation, carbon emissions,...

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Per 1 Juni 2013 is volgens Koninklijk Besluit 235/2013, het ook in Spanje wettelijk verplicht om als verkoper of verhuurder van een huis een Energie Prestatie Certificaat (Certificado de Eficiencia Energetica) te kunnen overleggen. Hiermee wordt Spanje gelijkgetrokken met een wetgeving die al in andere landen zoals Nederland sinds 2008 van kracht is. Spaanse woningen gebouwd na 2007 beschikken er al over, maar nu worden ook oudere woningen verplicht dit certificaat op te laten maken.

 Wat is een Energie Prestatie Certificaat? (Certificado de Eficiencia Energetica)

Het certificaat, een document dat wordt opgesteld door een bevoegd architect of ingenieur, geeft aan wat de betreffende energiewaarde van de woning is. Het resultaat van het energie gebruik voor de verschillende klimaatinstallaties als verwarming en koeling  enerzijds, en de isolatiewaardes van de buitenmuren, ramen, ventilatie,...

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Explanation: The ‘Catastro’ which is the Land Survey, not to confuse with the Property or Land Register (Registro de la Propiedad). The ‘Catastro’ is responsible to register the limits or boundaries of a property, and the possible tax liabilities. There is a Land Survey Number or Referencia Catastral, mentioned on the receipt of the yearly rates payable to the Town Hall and known as; I.B.I. (Impuesto de Bienes Inmuebles), but this number is different from the Property Register. Plots of land designated as agricultural are not liable to pay the IBI taxes.

Thus, if you inherit an agricultural plot in Spain, and do not know where it is located, you can be in trouble: you have the 'Escritura' (title deed) in your hand, but since taxes never have been paid for this plot, you do not know the Land Survey Number, which should enable you to find your plot on a map. Only a detective work can help; some property agents will do it for you, but not all of them....

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