Want to invest in properties in Barcelona? Read our review before.

Investment in Barcelona properties

Spain is keen to attract foreign property buyers and investors. Foreign purchases made up a surprising 19% of all Spanish property transactions in 2018. Whilst most of these are from EU countries, many are from outside the EU including buyers from Morocco, Russia, and China. So British buyers do not have much to fear about the UK being outside the EU.

Many financial experts are predicting a surge in property sales across Spain after Brexit because they think that London property will become less attractive for investors. In fact, non-EU investors are already looking at the property markets in Barcelona and Madrid for their future investment opportunities and at the potential for good returns.

With such a healthy outlook for the Spanish economy over the coming years, it is no wonder that the Spanish government is still keen to attract Brits to move to Spain and invest in the country.

Can foreigners buy property in Barcelona?


Yes. There are no restrictions on buying property in Barcelona for investment, whether it’s commercial, residential or land. In fact, Spain encourages investment by foreigners, both resident and non-resident.


You will require a financial number which can acquire by visiting a police station with your passport. This typically happens on the day for Spanish or EU citizens but may take a few weeks for others.


Buying a home in Barcelona: where to find real estate

As it is easy for foreigners to buy property in Barcelona, there are websites and estate agents catering to almost every language and nationality.


Many real estate websites also list Barcelona properties, with some online portals listing thousands of options. However, these mostly focus on holiday homes, so you may prefer to use a Spanish site, such as the ones listed below.


As you don’t need to be resident to purchase a property, it is possible to buy a home before you arrive and move in directly. However, this naturally comes with certain risks and we strongly recommend that you view the property you are considering and don’t cut corners on the process, even if this means spending some weeks in a hotel when you arrive.


Buy property in Barcelona: fees and charges

The buyer usually pays the fees. They vary from region to region. Many are negotiable – there are no fixed fees for lawyers or estate agents. Costs paid by the buyer include:

  • Property transfer tax 6–10% (existing properties) / VAT (or IVA) at 10% (new properties);
  • Notary costs, title deed tax and land registration fee 1–2.5%;
  • Legal fees 1–2% (including VAT).

The seller usually pays the estate agent’s fees. This is typically their only cost. Estate agents usually charge a percentage, typically around 3% of the final sale price.

Infrastructure in Barcelona

Barcelona’s infrastructure should also be taken into consideration when thinking about investment. Transport and communication links in the city are exemplary, with high-functioning airports, high-speed rail networks, and busy trade ports bolstering the city’s economy. Technology is also at the forefront of Barcelona’s infrastructure: the city has invested millions in new technology, and is in fact one of Europe’s major Smart Cities, as well as being named European Capital of Innovation in 2014.

Everything seems to be fitting into place for investment in Barcelona – house prices are increasing, the value of luxury property is going up, there’s more development, more tourists, political decisions are going in favour of investment, the economy is gaining traction, and the city’s infrastructure appears robust. All signs indicate that now is the perfect time to invest in Spain’s most popular city.

Real estate investment in Barcelona: is it a good idea?

With 8.3 million visitors in 2015, Barcelona is one of Europe’s most popular cities. Barcelona’s popularity has in fact been steadily increasing since 2010 (which saw 7.13 million visitors), and tourist numbers have more than doubled since 2000.

The real estate market in Barcelona has also experienced an upswing in recent years, with property prices across the city increasing steadily since 2014, thanks in large part to a new wave of foreign investment. The signs of a property market boost in Barcelona were visible even before 2014: in 2013, only 11 Spanish districts experienced house price increases, but 9 of these were located in central Barcelona. All indicators point to the fact that the tourist hotspot has also become a property hotspot, and Barcelona now ranks as one of Europe’s most lucrative investment targets for secure returns.

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