When you are looking for a property in Valencia one of the questions you will inevitably ask us is “How long does it take to buy a property in Valencia?” The truth is it can be a lot quicker than you expect and possibly a lot quicker than you are used to in your own country.
(Make sure to click on the text links in the article for more information on each section)
To begin with you have to find a property of course. Once this is done the issues that you need to bear in mind are, firstly, the length of time your lawyer will take to do the conveyancing, secondly, whether you have your ducks in a row, thirdly, the situation of the sellers and lastly, the availability of your funds. We have talked about the purchase process before here. Today we are going to concentrate on why a sale can be concluded rapidly here and also why it may not.
Let’s assume you have found your property. In the city the conveyancing will take just a few days in the vast majority of cases. Exceptions to this are protected and historical buildings, buildings where there is not a community set up or where the community is represented by a “Gestor” who may or may not be efficient.
Outside the city then the conveyancing process may be lengthened by the local council and the planning department in that council. They are notoriously slow in some towns and amazingly efficient in others. In the case of a house your lawyer will need to make sure that the house doesn’t break any planning regulations on the land and is totally legal.
Whilst the lawyer is doing the conveyancing you need to get your ducks in a row. Your bank account should be set up, your NIE should be either already got or be in the process of being got, you should have set up your currency transfer where applicable and if you are not going to be able to come back soon you should have appointed your lawyer or somebody else with a Power of Attorney to represent you. You may also want to speak to builders, architects, project managers etc… if you are going to be doing a modernisation once you have purchased. We can arrange all this for you on your orientation day.
If you leave these things until after you have found a property then it could hold up the purchase process and may mean that you could lose the property. If these things are already in place then you can go ahead with confidence and make yourself an attractive option for any seller. Having everything in place may actually help you in the negotiation process on price too.
The Sellers’ Situation
(For apostrophe pedants amongst you I am assuming there are two or more sellers in the above title)
The sellers are usually able to move quickly in Spain. This is not always the case but the extended family network, empty family houses back in their home village and the availability of rental properties to move into along with self storage spaces that have sprung up over the last few years, allowing them to deposit their furniture for long time periods at a reasonable price, has meant that sellers can usually be out of the property very quickly. Sellers often get around the issue of packing by leaving literally everything in the house, even personal belongings and photos! They may even leave everything when you specifically state you want the property emptied.
Because of the situation of the sellers being this way it is highly unusual to find a chain when you are buying a property and as we have explained in the purchase process article because the stipulations of the deposit contract are very clear, sellers get ready to leave very quickly. They are not usually dependent on somebody else moving out of another property.
You can complete as soon as your funds arrive in your account. If you have made sure to have all of your ducks in a row then you will be able to choose the time to transfer your funds at a convenient time prior to your purchase date so as to maximise the exchange rate you receive.
If you are depending on a mortgage then it will take longer because the bank supplying you with the mortgage will need to value the property as well as studying your viability for the mortgage.
Once they have done all that and made you an offer then expect another couple of weeks while they set everything up at the notary too. Typically the process of getting a mortgage applied for and approved takes anywhere between 30-45 days as long as you supply all of your paperwork they ask for promptly (And they will ask for a lot of paperwork) If you take time to collect the paperwork then expect longer. Remember to have it ready beforehand just in case.
Once your funds are here, your lawyer gives the go ahead and the sellers are ready you can go to the notary and complete.
How Long Does It Take Then?
The proverbial how long is a piece of string question?
From our experience it can be anything from a week up to six months. Typically we set a 30-60 day period from deposit to completion but we have signed in as little as five days (The client had the money here, the conveyancing was for a non historic property in the city and the owners didn’t live there) and as long as a year previously (The buyer was waiting for funds from a business sale in another country). It all depends on your situation and the sellers’ situation too.
What you should expect is around 30-45 days. You will be covered by the contract you sign for deposit and as long as you complete your end of the contract you will have nothing to worry about. Contact us now and we can help you find your property, get your ducks in a row and complete your purchase with confidence.
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