Buyers Guide Mallorca


We've prepared a guide for you with all the important information on „how to buy a property in Mallorca“ for when you are looking for a property to buy in Mallorca, for example in Puerto de Andratx, Bendinat, Puerto Portals, Son Vida, Costa d‘en Blanes or even in Palma:


The Escritura Publica and Nota Simple

The Escritura Publica is the registered title deed of the property.

It is the only guarantee of title in Spain and contains a description of the property, the details of the owner and any mortgages or legal claims that exist against the property.

A Nota Simple contains further details of any mortgages or charges against the property and is also available from the Registry.

The IBI receipt

Before purchasing a resale (not new) Spanish property check out the ‘lmpuesto sobre Bienes lnmuebles’, or lBI, which is the municipal property tax.

A new property bought from a developer will not have an IBI receipt (because it has never been ‘owned’) so it is the responsibility of the buyer to register the property for this tax.

The Referencia Catastral

Every property sale must quote the ‘Referencia Catastral’ of the property in question. The Catastro is another system of property registration in Spain, which concentrates on the location, physical description and boundaries of the property. While the Property Registry focuses almost exclusively on ownership and title, the Catastro is concerned with property valuation.

These two systems do not communicate with each other, and it is common to find that the catastral description of a property differs greatly from the one in the Property Registry.

Community Fees, Statutes and minutes of the AGM

This only applies if you are buying a property in a commnutiy. These are the fees charged by the ‘Comunidad de Propietarios’, the Community of Property Owners, a legal body that controls all the elements held in common like the elevator, gardens and pool.

Each owner is assigned a quota, or percentage of the expenses which, by law, must be paid.

Utility Bills

These assure you that the bills are paid and also provide an idea of what the running costs of the property will be.

The Private Contract / Option Contract

It is common practice for the buyer and seller to confirm the details of the purchase in a private contract which is called option contract or option agreement, with the buyer putting down a non-refundable deposit of 10% of the purchase price.

This payment reserves the property for the buyer for an agreed time and allows the buyer to arrange payment of the balance.

If another buyer comes along and purchases the property despite the existence of the private contract, the first buyer can claim double the amount of the deposit back.

If the buyer fails to complete the sale, the deposit is forfeited.

The contract you sign should identify the property as well as both parties, the seller and buyer.

The Purchase Deed or Escritura de Compraventa

Assuming that the private contract is in order and that the buyer has secured the funds to complete the transaction, the sale is completed by signing the Escritura de Compraventa in the presence of the Notary.

The Escritura de Compraventa does not guarantee your title to the property until it is registered at the Property Registry (making it an Escritura Pública, a public document). Once registered, the document is returned to the Notary, where it is kept on file. If you need a copy you can request one from the Notary who will produce an authorised copy. The deed should be registered within a few months and your lawyer will usually ask for a sum of money in advance to cover the estimated taxes and fees, and will either bill you for the remainder or refund you the overpayment once the deed is registered.

Notary and Lawyer

Do not confuse the Notario with a lawyer. The Notario is a public notary and an official of the State who ensures that contracts are legal. He does not verify or guarantee the accuracy of the statements made in the contract. You still need a lawyer representing your best interests.


When you are looking at property for sale in Mallorca you have costs to bear and on average, the cost of buying a property in Mallorca will be in the region of 12% of the purchase price.

The notary

The notary charges a standardized fee which varies according to the amount of land, the size of the property and its declared purchase value. Please keep in mind that there will be charges for each of the deeds (mortgage, purchase etc).

The Lawyer

Normally, the laywers are charing around 1% for their service.

The registry fee

The inscription of the property in your name in the official property register. Additionally, there will be costs for the inscription of the mortgage.

The transfer tax

Transmisiones Patrimoniales in Spain is 8% of the value declared in the contract.

  • Any amount up to € 400,000 – 8% Transfer Tax
  • Any amount between € 400,001 and € 600,000 – 9% Transfer Tax
  • Any amount between € 600.001 and € 1.000.000 – 10% Transfer Tax
  • Any amount between € 1.000.001 and € 2.000.000 – 12% 
  • Any amount in excess of € 2.000.001 – 13% 

If you purchase a newly built property from a developer, this tax will be the value-added tax of 10%.

The municipal tax

This municipal tax is on the increase in the value of the property since its last sale. It is called ‘plusvalía’.

Your layer can find out exactly how much it will be by going to the municipal tax office and asking in advance.

The tax deposit

3% of the declared purchase value (vendor´s expense).

If you are buying from someone who is a „non“-resident in Spain, you will deposit 3% of the total purchase price at the town hall in the seller’s name as a guarantee against his future tax liabilities.

You pay the seller 97% of the price, and pay the other 3% directly to the town hall.

This serves as a guarantee against the non-resident seller’s various Spanish tax liabilities.

Deciding the declared property value

Until recently it was common practice to declare a low value for the property in order to minimise the transfer tax. Now most lawyers advise both parties to declare a realistic market value.

If and when you resell the property, you will be liable for Spanish capital gains tax on any profit made. Although it is tempting to declare a low value now, you will be liable for tax on a much bigger profit when you sell later.

About the N.I.E. number

Spanish legislation makes it compulsory for anyone selling or buying property in Spain to have a NIE Número de Identidad de Extranjeros which, translated, means ‘Identity Number for Foreigners’. People applying for a NIE used to get a plastic card which fitted neatly into any wallet or purse, but the modern NIE is actually just a piece of paper with your name and number and an official stamp.

Power of Attorney

If you are not likely to be in Spain to sign the contract or conclude the purchase, a general power of attorney is frequently used to appoint a legal representative in Spain.

The document is in a standard format that lists the actions that can be carried out by the holder, including buying and selling property.

The only document required to establish power of attorney is a national identity document or passport of both the ‘giver’ and receiver’.



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