What UK citizens should know about buying property in Spain after Brexit

Published Date: August 26, 2022

Britain’s departure from the European Union has involved some radical changes to British citizens’ rights within the EU. As citizens of a non-member or “third” country, British nationals no longer have the right to live and work freely within the EU.But how does this affect property ownership for British people in Spain? Here we attempt to address some of the most common concerns.

Can I still buy property in Spain?

Yes. Anyone can buy property in Spain, not just EU citizens — and Brexit has not changed this.

Will it cost more to buy property in Spain?

No. The cost of buying a Spanish property is the same, whether you are a citizen of Spain or another EU country, Great Britain or any other nation.In addition to the purchase price, the costs of buying a property in Spain include a purchase tax, notary’s fee, property registry fee and some other small miscellaneous charges. These apply to all buyers and have not been affected by Brexit.

Does Brexit affect my rights as a homeowner?

No. Property rights are not linked to residency status or citizenship. All property owners in Spain have exactly the same rights and obligations, regardless of where they come from. 

Can I still rent my property out?

Absolutely. Property rights — including the right to rent — are not affected by Brexit, as long as you follow the rules specified by each autonomous community and local government.The only change is to taxation on rental income. EU and European Economic Area (EEA) citizens pay tax on rental income in Spain at the rate of 19%. Brexit means that UK residents are obliged to pay tax at the same rate as non-EU citizens, which is currently 24%. Also, before Brexit, you could reduce the total tax bill by deducting allowable expenses. Now, you pay tax on the gross rental income with no deductions permitted. 

How long will I be able to stay at my new property?

Before Brexit, UK nationals benefitted from freedom of movement, with the right to live and work anywhere within the European Union, and millions took advantage of this right, including to retire to the famous “place in the sun.”This is no longer the case. British nationals are now only entitled to spend a maximum of 90 days in every 180 days in an EU country — “three months on, three months off.”

What if I want to stay longer?

Unfortunately, you can’t just combine your two permitted 90-day periods for a longer stay in one year. If you wish to stay for a longer period, you will have to apply for a visa or residency. However, you can split up the 90 days into different chunks (for example, three blocks of 30 days) — just don’t exceed 90 days total in the preceding 180.

How would this impact my ownership of a Pacaso?

Pacaso makes things simpler for you in a couple of ways. Firstly, since you co-own property that is managed by Pacaso, you are unlikely to exceed the 90-day limit. Plus, there is no need for you to return periodically your home and conduct repairs as things are all handled for you.Secondly, Pacaso handles all the management, regulations, maintenance and ongoing taxation, and we organise everything together into one simple and transparent monthly fee. With Pacaso's fully-managed ownership model, you can own a property in Spain with confidence, ease and peace of mind.

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