Buying a property in Marbella

07/06/2021 by Gary Francis

Buying in Marbella

Much like when you are selling, the process of buying a property in Marbella can appear to be a daunting task and choosing your estate agent is one of your most important decisions. You want that agent to understand exactly what you want, where you want to be and what you want to spend. You will also want that agent to suggest similar areas you may not have considered.

At Private Property we take the time to know what you are looking for and what suits you and your family, only then can we show you properties that fit your criteria rather than take a shotgun approach around the budget you have chosen. We have a large number of properties which we have listed directly but we also have access to agent networks which allow us to be able to offer you 99.9% of the properties for sale in Marbella, so you wont miss out on anything by choosing Private Property. You can view our properties currently for sale here

Buying a Property in Marbella

Once you have decided on buying a property in Marbella and the terms and conditions agreed, the property will normally be secured through a private purchase contract. The private purchase contract will be signed by both parties once due diligence has been carried out and a 10% deposit has been paid. The option contract will stipulate the terms and conditions of the sale. Should you fail to complete the sale by the date stated in the contract you will lose your deposit. Should the seller decide not to proceed you have the right to claim back twice the amount of the deposit.

On completion of the transaction, a deed of conveyance or escritura publica is signed by both parties when the final balance due on the purchase is paid. This signing must be made in the presence of a public notary which makes the document legally binding.

Buying a property in Marbella

Costs of buying a property in Marbella

There are various taxes and costs associated with buying a property in Marbella which add to between 10% and 12% of the purchase price.

  • Either IVA (VAT) which is levied at 10% of the purchase price on a new property. In addition to the IVA 1.2% stamp duty is also charged (reduced from 1.5% 27/04/2021). IVA on Urban plots, commercial premises and some garages bought from developing or trading companies is levied at 21%.
  • or Transfer tax or Impuesto de Tranmisiones Patrimoniales which is charged at 7% of the value of the resale property ( reduced 27/04/2021 from 8% of the value of resale residential buildings up to 400,000 Euros, 9% for between 400,001 and 700,000 Euros and 10% over 700,001 Euros).
  • Plusvalia is a municipal tax charged on the increase of the land since its last sale using the official value of the land as the taxable base. This tax may be paid by either the buyer or the seller as per the private purchase contract.
  • Notary fees are fixed at an official scale and varies according to the size of the land, the size of the property and its value.
  • Land Registry fees are a similar amount to the notary fees and relates to the entry of the property into the land registry.
  • Lawyers fees are between 1% and 2% of the purchase price of the property but can often be negotiated on larger value properties.

The above fees relate to individual ownership but a property may be owned by more than one individual or by a company. The company can be Spanish in origin, from a country with double taxation agreements with Spain, off shore or a combination of any of these. Each option has its pros and cons and your own unique situation will dictate what form of ownership you should consider.


During the purchase process various values are attached to the property.

  • Valor catastral or catastral value is the assessed value of the property used in the calculation of local rates. This value is normally considerably lower than the real market value.
  • Fiscal value is the value assessed by the local tax authorities, and is the minimum value that should be declared on the title deed when a sale is completed.
  • Valuation value is the value assessed by a Bank for mortgage purposes.
  • Market value is a value given by a real estate agent or property valuer as an estimate of the property’s’ current market value.
  • Declared value is the amount that appears on the title deed which may not necessarily coincide with the actual sales price.