Can You Buy a House in Spain Without Being a Resident?

For a vast majority of people who had the chance to travel around Europe, Spain is the most beautiful country they have visited. So, it is not a surprise to see that millions of people out there visit it every year. At the same time, we can see that there are many of those who are interested in purchasing some property in some of the most popular locations.

We are talking about those who want to move permanently, it doesn’t matter what their motivation is. If we take a look at an official statistic, we can see that more than ¾ of those who have moved into the country have their private property. If you are interested in looking at some of the best properties in Javea, one of the most beautiful small cities, be sure to check out

In most cases, these people will have something in common, they will not have resident status in Spain. As you can see, they were able to purchase private property. Now, we would like to talk about how you can purchase a property in Spain, even when you don’t have resident status. Without further ado, let’s take a look at what we’ve been able to gather up.

Owning a Home in Spain


According to the official statistics, we can see that roughly 80% of the population are owners of a certain property. When you compare this percentage with some other European countries or the United States, you will see that it is much higher. What’s even more surprising is that a vast majority of them didn’t use any sort of mortgage to purchase that property. Once again, this is an exceptional fact.

The global financial crisis that started in 2009 has inflicted a massive blow on the market. The prices of real estate have declined significantly. However, the situation got better until the global pandemic of COVID-19. Nevertheless, we can see that the prices are slowly rising since the lockdown. When you combine all of these facts, it’s obvious that investing in real estate in this country is a good move.

Since we are talking about a beautiful country, we don’t believe that many people have this sort of motivation behind their decision to move here. Still, it surely represents quite a capital they can resale for a significant value in the years to come. Some experts even say that we can expect a slight drop in value in the next couple of months. So, you can see that this would be a good move in any case.

What Do You Need to Purchase?


Many foreigners make the mistake of believing that buying a house in Spain will require them to participate in some highly complex process. It’s quite the contrary, we can see that this is not nearly as complex as many believe. There is only one thing that is essential for this process. We are talking about numero de identification del extranjero, or NIE. We are talking about an ID issued to non-residents.

When a foreigner receives, it is an absolute must to have this document wherever he or she goes. Also, you will need it whenever you are in a situation to sign something. What needs to be said is that you will not need to invest a lot of time and effort before you can obtain this document. Thankfully, you will see that the time you will need to wait for it is quite reasonable.

One of the ways you can gather more information on the whole process is by talking to an agent who will handle the deal on your behalf. There is one more factor you need to take into consideration. We are talking about having a bank account. While this is not something essential, you can complete the process without it. Still, it will make the process much easier. So, you should have that in mind.

However, two situations make the process simpler or slightly more complex.


Non-EU Citizens

If the person interested in purchasing a property is not a citizen of the European Union, the procedure can be somewhat more complex. The reason being that you need to apply for an NIE for residents. To become a resident of the country, you will need to spend at least 185 days within the territory, without leaving it. In case you are not a resident, you will need to ask for a different sort of NIE.

EU Citizens

When the person interested in purchasing a house comes from the EU countries, two sorts of documents applying for are essential. We are talking about NIE, of course. The first one is temporary, for those who don’t live in Spain. So, they will get a temporary document while they are in Spain and while they are completing the process of acquiring a house. The other one being the usual resident document.

How Costly Can it Be?


Now, we would like to talk about the prices of acquiring a house in different parts of Spain. You will agree that there is no definite answer to this question. Instead, we will need to talk about a couple of cities, just for you to get an idea about what you can expect. For instance, purchasing a property in Barcelona is the heftiest per square meter, even though we are not talking about the Capital city.

After Barcelona, Madrid and Malaga will have the highest prices. After these three, there is a long list of towns that come with their average prices. In any case, there is no way you can obtain property or house for less than $1800 per square mile. Therefore, you should choose the location you want to call your new home wisely.


You will certainly agree that understanding a foreign real estate market is not easy to do without any help. That’s why we’ve provided you with the most significant points, to make your idea about what you can expect clearer. We are sure you will find this insight useful.