Real Estate in Spain

The good news is that the builders have caught up to demand, so brokers cannot keep charging high rates."

Posted by Casi Cielo

Information on real estate and property in Spain. Including links to further information and real estate sites for Spain.

When buying, the buyer chooses a notary, who acts as the middleman for both sides. Lawyers are not necessary, but you will probably find one useful. See this page from the Spanish Notaries site about buying a property in Spain

Spain’s real estate prices went up 173% during 1997 - 2004. Some think that’s a bubble waiting to burst, while others think prices will cool off, but not go down. Indeed, the average annual increase in real estate prices eased from 15.8% in 2003, to 12.5% in 2004, and down to 10.1% in 2005. During the boom, many real estate brokers were charging considerably more than the usual 3-5%. The good news is that the builders have caught up to demand, so brokers cannot keep charging high rates. The bad news is that you often don’t know exactly what a broker has charged you until the day of the closing, when you actually go to pay.

According to the Sociedad de Tasación, as of December 2005, house/apartment prices per square meter are:

  • Barcelona: 3700€
  • Madrid: 3629€
  • Provincial capitals: 2516€
  • Non-capital cities/towns: 1840€

Sample maintenance fees when you buy a house in Spain range from 15€ - 60€. (or more with a doorman).

Spanish Real Estate Jargon

Abogado – lawyer or solicitor
Apostilla – an official stamp on the document which certifies the signature
Ayuntamiento – city or town hall
Ático – penthouse
Baño – bathroom
Bodega - winecellar
Contrato privado de compraventa – contract of sale
Comprador – buyer
Calefacción – heating
Calidad – quality
Campo – in the country
Casa – house
Cocina – kitchen
Comedor – dining room
Ciudad – town
Cuarto -room
Dormitorio – bedroom
Ducha – shower
Dúplex – maisonette
Escritura – Notarised deed of sale
Escalera – stairway
Finca – farm or townhouse
Gastos – fees or expenses
Granja – farm or farmhouse
Hipoteca – mortgagee
Honorarios – fees
Huerto – orchard
ITP – transfer tax payable when buying a re-sale property
Inmobiliaria – estate agent office
Impuesto - tax
Lavadero – utility room
Lujo – luxury
Muebles – furniture
Nota simple – property registry information
Notario – notary who handles all the conveyance work for property sales
NIE – tax identification required by all foreign property owners in Spain
Primera copia – signed original of the escritura or a certified copy
Puerta – door
Piscina – swimming pool
Parcela – building plot
Piso – apartment, or floor of building
Pozo – well (of the water type)
Precio – price
Pueblo – village
Propiedad – property
Rústica – rural or agricultural
Reformada – modernised
Río – river
Salón – lounge
Se vende – for sale
Trastero – storage room
Urbanización – community development
Vendedor – seller
Ventana – window

Further Investigation

With a venture as important and expensive as real estate, we strongly recommend you do your due diligence. This includes learning as much as you can about the markets, the regions, and investment strategies in order to minimize your risk and maximize your returns, whether that’s measured in euros or lifestyle.

Get as much background information as you can before you start talking to realtors; these books about real estate in Spain have valuble information about the real estate market in Spain - for your curiousity and guidance:
...or search Amazon yourself. Try “spain real estate”

Last updated 10 10 2008

Donation to

If you find this site helpful, please leave a donation for us. This will encourage us to remove ads, keep responding to your questions and add more great information about living in Spain to


If you'd like to ask a question for discussion, please mosey on over to the Spain Forum. See our posting rules and instructions here.

Lionel westell said:

My advice is to use a qualified Spanish real estate agency, found under the API sign.

Polaris World said:

The market for Spanish property has changed significantly. The days of off-plan property are long gone. Buyers now have a fantastic choice of finished property at typically half of the 2006 prices. You know what you are buying because it is complete and you can see and inspect it and move in within a few months. It is still important to use a lawyer/solicitor but many of the risks due to off-plan purchases are now history.

tuttosullaffitto said:


The stock of empty flats in Spain today is enormous, especially in coastal areas. Prices have fallen and will fall even more, lack of credit and unemployment are the main reasons.
If you are considering buying property in Spain, first check the applicable price for the area. is a large Spanish portal with thousands of properties where you can see how the Spanish market is.


Register, then sign-in with your SpainExpat username to post your comments.

Go to Top

Recent Discussions
La Liga table , Spanish Football Round Up - By: jurdyr

Total Views: 10498, Last Post On: 01/12/2021 07:59 am By: Alessandro01

But what if I don’t like French Fries? - By: mightyfrea

Total Views: 13622, Last Post On: 01/12/2021 07:56 am By: Alessandro01

How do you spend your weekend in Spain? - By: Garry_Oldman

Total Views: 1928, Last Post On: 02/25/2019 11:21 pm By: Alessandro01

Online Shopping from Spain... who delivers? - By: The Expatriator

Total Views: 7524, Last Post On: 02/24/2019 05:24 pm By: TolDR

Inflatable swimming pools - for all the family! - By: susanspain

Total Views: 7356, Last Post On: 02/10/2019 10:23 am By: angelala

Top 10 Tips for Learning Spanish - By: don Pablo

Total Views: 6497, Last Post On: 02/09/2019 04:30 pm By: mikkelkasper

Spanish Culture and Lifestyle - By: hollysurly

Total Views: 3874, Last Post On: 02/06/2019 05:30 pm By: Kate2228

Recent Talkbacks
On EU Residency in Spain for EU Citizens, Their Spouses and Family Members, Dreamer said:

"Hi Billy,

The article has just been updated with all the new info."

On EU Residency in Spain for EU Citizens, Their Spouses and Family Members, redglasses said:

"Can a british resident live in spain? Is Britain considered part of the European Union?
What about taxes for running a business in Spain for an Expat?"

On Moving to Spain, rojo36 said:

"Glasgow Man and Van has a dedicated team of movers who can provide a reliable removals service to Spain. We are often able to move you along with your belongings if transport is a problem, keeping the cost down."

Expats on Facebook
Related External

Notary Information for Buying Real Estate

Kyero Real Estate News

Buying a property in Spain - an article by Strong Abogados.

CostaBlancaExpats: Buying a property in Spain

CostaBlancaExpats: Buying land and building your house on it

Spanish notaries site