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Getting a mortgage in Spain as a foreigner

Are you a foreign buyer and want to get a mortgage for a property in Spain? Here's all you need to know. You can find: conditions, requirements and documentation

Have you ever dreamt of enjoying the comforts of your own property in a beautiful and sunny country with rich history, modern cities and golden beaches? If the answer is “YES,” then we have a perfect destination for you to do just that – Spain.

In recent years, Spain has become one of the most popular property investment locations for foreigners. Knight Frank’s Wealth Report 2023, prepared by a prestigious real estate consultancy, highlights Spain as the second most international prime residential marketplace. It is also in the top 5 overseas markets for ultra-high-net-worth individuals (UHNWIs) due to its lifestyle benefits, stable political governance, currency diversification, and high levels of transparency. 

If this hasn’t fascinated or intrigued you yet, think about the following – you can buy real estate through a mortgage even if you’re not a Spanish citizen. How? Even if you’re a foreigner, Spain offers you wonderful opportunities to get a mortgage. All you need to do is follow a few simple steps. Let’s have a closer look into the details.

What makes Spain an ideal place for getting a mortgage?

Apart from the tourism, climate, life quality and safety, culture and food, getting a mortgage in Spain has
many other advantages for foreigners:

  • One of the lowest mortgage rates in Europe.

  • Residence permit or citizenship are not necessary.

  • No need for surety/pledge.

  • High liquidity when renting out.

Moreover, not only can you buy a property in Spain but there’s also a special Golden Visa scheme for foreigners. What this scheme in fact means is that you can get a residency visa if you buy a Spanish property worth more than £500,000.

What are Spain's mortgage lending conditions for foreigners?

Let’s take a step back and make sure you have a clear idea of Spanish mortgages. Although there are no laws prohibiting you from obtaining a mortgage and purchasing real estate, there are a few standard conditions and rules that are slightly less favorable for you as a foreigner than for Spanish citizens.

Restrictions to price and debt

  • You can borrow between 60% and 70% of the price of the property. The only time getting 100% is possible is if you are buying a bank-repossessed property.

  • Your debt level cannot be more than 30-35% of your income.

Mortgage term

  • You can take out the mortgage for a minimum of 5 years and a maximum term of 30 years, with the maximum age limit for repayment set at 75 years old.

Mortgage type
There are three types of mortgages depending on the type of interest:

  • Variable rate

  • Fixed rate

  • Mixed interest rate

The 2023 EMF Hypostat Spain country report, which covers data through the end of 2022, found that there has been a general slowdown of long-term fixed rate mortgages in favor of mixed interest rate loans. In 2022, the average loan-to-value (LTV) ratio on new residential mortgage loans was 65% and the average maturity for new mortgages was 24 years. 

Which requirements do you need to meet as a foreigner to be able to buy a property through a mortgage in Spain?

#1 The first thing you should do is to get your NIE number. NIE number means Número de Identidad de Extranjero (Foreigner Identification Number) and it represents a number unique to you that registers and identifies you as a foreigner in the country. To find out more about getting your NIE number, click here.

There are, however, a few additional things you should consider depending on your country of origin and your needs. The table below outlines your options:

EU citizens

Non-EU citizens

Resident NIE

Resident NIE

A permanent ID for those who do want to live in Spain

For Spanish residents who stay in the country for more than 183 days per year

Temporary NIE number

Non-resident NIE

For those that have no intention of living in Spain but still want to make a purchase

For those seeking to buy a property in Spain without living there

#2 Next, you need to open a bank account in a Spanish bank. This step is not mandatory at this stage but is highly recommended.

#3 Lastly, you should make a preliminary contract and pay a down payment.

When applying for a mortgage, what documents will you need to provide?

Once you’ve chosen your real estate (commercial, residential or land) and mortgage package, you may feel overwhelmed at the thought of collecting and preparing documentation. Don’t worry. Bureaucracy is an integral part of this process and it’s not meant to puzzle you but to prove your identity and your financial strength.

According to idealista, as a future mortgage holder you must provide the following:

  • A photocopy of your NIE or passport.

  • A non-resident certificate.

  • A copy of your work contract.

  • A copy of your last pay slips from your country of residence.

  • A bank statement covering the last year for the account into which your salary is paid.

  • A certificate of tax residence.

  • A tax declaration.

  • The last three receipts for the cancellation of your outstanding debts.

  • The purchase contract of the property you are going to buy (or the earnest money contract).

  • Application form from the corresponding bank signed by all applicants.

  • A credit risk report to prove their creditworthiness.

Note. All these documents must be in Spanish, so you should have them legally translated or notarized by a certified court translator.

To paint a better picture, here’s an outline of the process for you.

A graphic outlining the process of applying for a mortgage.

To sum up

Once you’ve chosen your real estate (commercial, residential or land) and mortgage package, you may feel overwhelmed at the thought of collecting and preparing documentation. Don’t worry. Bureaucracy is an integral part of this process and it’s not meant to puzzle you but to prove your identity and your financial strength.

Here's how Kredium can help you along the way:

  • We take you through the process from start to finish

  • We do the research for you

  • We shop around for best offers

  • We bring international lenders to you

  • Apply now and our experts will get you started

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