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Documents required by the buyer and their lawyer at the sale of a property


The majority of lawyers will require most of the following documents before a sales option is written and signed, by buyer and seller. They may agree to except only the property deed and catastral documents for properties of great age, or which have been owner for many years by the same family which don’t not have any resent paperwork.

A sales option includes details that have been agreed between buyer and seller as to the outstanding documents need for a sale, sets a time frame for the seller to produce them and a amount as a deposit for the sale which withdraws the property from the market.

These are a general guide, more detailed explanations for rural properties, projects, new builds, and properties which require complete reform are available with a registered account.


1) Property title (deeds) and in the case of an inherited property change of title documentation.

2) Catastral Registration document of the property.

3) Last receipt for the local council tax.

4) Last receipt of rubbish taxes.

5) Contracts in the owner’s name for, water, power, gas, telephone… Not in the name of a tenant.

6) Final bills for any services, water, power, gas, telephone in the owner’s name not in the name of a tenant.

7) Certificado de Habitabilidad in force from the date of issue the certificate is in force for ten years. Also known as a Cedula. Older houses which have never had a Cedula which is common in villages. The formula is to apply retrospectively for a“Cedula Carrencia” ×

8) Eficiencia certificado de Energia, In the case of buildings for reform this is not obligatory, but most buyers’ lawyers will want a copy and do consider it obligatory. ×


9) Certificado de no existir infracciones urbanísticas, a notification or certificate from the town hall that there are no local taxes, fines, or outstanding files for planning violations against the property.

10) Expediente de Dominio due to a change in the law in 2015. When buying with a mortgage the m2 described on the Cadastral Registration document of the property, must coincided with the m2 described in the Título de propiedad (escritura)...(deeds). Or the notary may not legally sell the property. A survey is required to resolve this. It, however, does not apply where a mortgage is not required and is a form of control of the mortgage system by the state.

11) El certificado de antigüedad a certificate of the age of a house is the legal and official document that indicates the date on which the construction of the house was finished. When buying a property to reform this is particularly important as information is gathered from aerial photographs from 1956 onwards. The town hall may restrict the reform of parts of a property is it cannot be shown to be pre-existing date on which planning laws changed effecting the occupation level permitted on urban and rustic plots.


12) Only applicable to apartments the ITE is a survey of the conditions of a whole apartment building. The community of residents is required to request and then act on the results of the survey or be fined. It applies to buildings of more than 50 year in age.

13) Apartments in communities of owners, a certificate from the president or administrator of the community stating that the present owner has made all payments to date and has no outstanding dues to pay to the community.


× Please note; in the case of 7) & 8) these certificates can be wavered when a property is in poor condition and doesn’t not have a bathroom or kitchen in other words is not a habitable dwelling, but this must be recorded in the option to purchase contract.

But the main focus must then be on 9), 10) and 11) proof that the property has no outstanding fines or planning problems and the m2 registered in both the deeds and the land registry is correct. And proof of the legality of all parts of the construction is vital if you wish to apply for planning permission.

If you have any doubts it is always possible to make an informe with the council associated with the property regarding any project you might wish to make. The informe will give you a guide to the possibilities and explain what may not be possible. Depending on the number of details and type of enquire your making costs of an informe starts at less than 300€ a relatively low cost for very valuable information.

For more information about the costs of purchasing taxes and fees as well as the purchase of rural properties, projects and properties for reform please register an account.


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