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Can non-residents of Spain purchase property in Madrid?

Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or an experienced real estate investor, the Spanish capital offers a plethora of attractions and potential.

Even though Madrid’s streets are adorned with charming restaurants, stunning architecture, and vibrant nightlife scenes, a burning question occupies the minds of many visitors: Can foreign non-residents buy property in Madrid?

While specific guidelines and procedures apply to foreigners buying real estate in this captivating Spanish city, Mortgage Direct is here to assist you through the process. We’ve aided numerous individuals, both residents and non-residents, in acquiring their own properties in Madrid. For the purpose of this article, our focus will be on the process for foreign, non-resident buyers.

To summarize:

Yes, foreigners can purchase both commercial and residential properties in Madrid. Foreign non-residents need the correct set of documents and must have at least 30% of the purchase price (plus an estimated 11-13% to cover taxes and other expenses) to access bank loans.

If the property is exclusively for commercial purposes, with no intention to use it as a residence, a minimum of 40% of the purchase price is required, along with an estimated 11-13% to cover buyer fees, including property taxes.

With the short answer covered, let’s delve into understanding more about whether foreigners can buy property in Madrid, one of Spain’s iconic cities, and explore why investing in property here should be on your radar.

Why buy property in Madrid?

Madrid is gaining popularity among both visitors and residents, swiftly becoming a hotspot for property investors. Recent statistics indicate that Brits lead as the highest percentage of foreign homebuyers in Spain, contributing to the high demand for property in this captivating city.

  • Location: Madrid’s convenient location, nestled between the magnificent Pyrenees Mountains and the Mediterranean Sea, makes it an ideal setting for urbanites who still desire a connection with nature.
  • Investment: The city’s conditions are perfect for investment, with high rental yields and secure real estate conditions. Residency permit laws, such as the Golden Visa, enable foreign investors to attain permanent residency through real estate investments in Madrid, requiring a 500k euro down payment.
  • Growing economy: Madrid offers excellent infrastructure and abundant job opportunities, making it an attractive place for settling down. Whether purchasing property as an investment or a primary residence, Madrid caters to diverse needs.

With its Mediterranean climate, world-class cuisine, vibrant nightlife, breath-taking architecture, and beautiful landscapes, the Spanish capital has it all. Whether you’re eyeing an apartment in the city centre or a cosy house in the mountains, the options are endless.

Madrid boasts relative affordability, a low crime rate, and splendid views, making property investment here an appealing choice that combines wealth-generating potential with lifestyle benefits.

Moreover, with numerous high-quality international schools, educational concerns for your children can be addressed seamlessly in case of a permanent relocation.

If owning your ‘place in the sun’ in Spain has been a luxury you desire, and you’re uncertain about the location, Madrid should undoubtedly be a contender!

“Madrid is a highly sought-after destination for property seekers and foreign buyers.”

Can foreigners buy property in Madrid?

Yes, with certain considerations, foreign non-residents of Spain can purchase property in Madrid and its surrounding areas. Property ownership laws vary across Europe, and Madrid is open to allowing non-residents to buy real estate.

Foreigners may acquire both residential and commercial properties for personal use or investment purposes with relative ease, although specific factors need consideration.

What should foreigners consider before buying property in Madrid?

Before making any purchase, it’s crucial to consider the property’s cost (which varies based on size and location), along with additional taxes (set at 10% of the property value throughout the region) and other applicable fees.

To purchase property in Madrid, one must be aware of the legal requirements and restrictions related to property acquisition.

Foremost, correct identification documents are essential, including a passport (or ID card) from your home country and a NIE number.

The NIE is a prerequisite when buying property in Spain. Mortgage Direct, alongside our trusted legal contacts, can guide you through this process.

As a foreign non-resident buying a holiday home, a down payment of at least 30% of the total property cost, plus an additional 11-13% for taxes and fees, is necessary to secure a mortgage from a Spanish bank.

If the property is solely for investment, requiring no residence, a minimum of 40% of the purchase price, along with an estimated 11-13% for taxes and expenses, is needed.

Additionally, all real estate purchases must go through a closed national registry accessible only to registered professionals.

Foreign buyers should be aware of local regulations on ownership and occupancy, including restrictions on subletting and Airbnb/holiday lettings.


Prospective buyers must obtain a NIE before purchase and ensure its correct registration at the tax office. The purchase cannot proceed without a NIE, as the buyer cannot sign the property (and mortgage) deeds at the notary.

The NIE can be obtained remotely through Power of Attorney from a licensed Spanish lawyer, physically in Spain, or at a Spanish consulate.

Official residency can be applied for later after property purchase, a significant benefit for prompt property acquisition without residential status.

Taxation in Spain

Foreigners must remember that all real estate transactions in Spain are subject to taxation, including VAT (IVA) and stamp duty (AJD). Capital gains tax may also apply if the property is resold later.

Help for foreigners buying in Madrid

Fortunately, various resources are available for foreigners looking to buy property in Madrid, from government agencies offering advice to international mortgage brokers like Mortgage Direct, specializing in assisting foreign buyers.

Thorough research and advice from experienced professionals can make the property purchase in Madrid a smooth, stress-free process.

While there are additional considerations for foreigners buying property in Madrid, understanding legal requirements and seeking professional advice ensures a smooth purchase with minimal disruption.

After signing the property (and mortgage) deeds, foreign buyers can enjoy all that Madrid has to offer.

In the quest for suitable properties, whether seeking a tranquil apartment away from the city or a centrally located residence with access to Madrid’s entertainment options, there’s something for every taste.

With proper research and awareness of potential challenges, purchasing property in Madrid can be a rewarding experience financially and personally.

With its rich culture and diverse city life, Madrid could be your perfect home away from home!

Can foreigners buy property in Madrid? – To conclude

From its vibrant culture to its exquisite architecture and stunning landscapes, Madrid offers a unique blend of attractions for visitors worldwide.

Since 2006, we’ve utilized our expertise to simplify the complex Spanish mortgage and real estate buying process.

Our bilingual team of qualified Mortgage Direct advisers provides personalised advice on international property investments with exclusive mortgage conditions, ensuring the safety and profitability of your investment.

If you have any questions about purchasing property in Madrid or wish to discuss a tailor-made solution, feel free to get in touch with me today.

Will Roberts Mortgage Adviser

Originally from the UK, Will has been based in Barcelona since 2019. He holds a diverse range of financial qualifications and has experience in numerous international roles in the financial sector, along with a managerial position in a FTSE 100 organisation. Fluent in English & Spanish.

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Mortgages taken out in currencies other than the currency in which you earn are considered Foreign Currency Mortgages. Changes in the exchange rate may therefore increase the equivalent value of your debt. Under the Mortgage Law 5/2019 banks in Spain have introduced mechanisms to protect consumers from exchange-rate risk. For more information, please speak to your broker.

Mortgage Direct, S.L. is a company registered in the Registro de Intermediarios de Crédito Inmobiliario del BdE with the nº D108.

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