Buying property in Barcelona – A guide for expats

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During the Working Women Week, we held a webinar with ‘WeRelocateBCN’  and ‘Her Roomies’ which focused on the different living options in Barcelona. If you’re looking to buy a place rather than rent, it’s essential to be up to date on the buying process in Barcelona and most importantly, be aware of the different costs you can expect when buying.

Buying property in Barcelona - What you need to know

The buying process

If you have found a suitable home to purchase, a ‘reserva’ will be required (this is like a down-payment and is usually 1% of the asking price). The seller and interested buyer will both sign this document, which may also include resolutive conditions. If the seller doesn’t accept the offer, this money will be refunded to the potential buyer in full. 


If the seller chooses to accept the offer, a provisional purchase contract will be drawn up (ARRAS). Then, a payment of 10% of the total price will be made (minus the amount of the reserva) and this can be done remotely rather than in person. 


When the deed of delivery is passed, all parties must be present or, someone who can act on their behalf by means of a notarial power of attorney. If a mortgage has been requested, a representative of the bank will also be present and they will then proceed to arrange the payment. Otherwise, the payment is usually made by cheque. 

Buying costs

Popular questions

Did the price of housing decrease during Covid-19 in Barcelona?

In 2020 there were 25% less foreign buyers, as a result of Covid-19 & Brexit. As a result of this, the purchasing prices have decreased in Barcelona in order to try and encourage people to continue buying. The average price per m2 in Spain also decreased by -0.9% in 2020.

What will happen post Covid?

We have already seen a greater demand for properties in the suburbs or closer to green spaces. In urban areas, apartments with terraces or patio areas will be in a higher demand. The prices and demand are on the rise for coastal properties. As most companies offer a hybrid working environment or have made the change to fully remote working, most people require a home office and a more spacious space when searching for properties.

How can I finance real estate?

Non-residents (people living in Barcelona for less than 1 year) will need to pay 30% in cash. If you’ve been living in Barcelona for over 1 year, the bank may finance up to 80%-90% of the total purchase price, but not always.

About WeRelocateBCN

WeRelocateBCN is a Real Estate, Investment and Relocation services agency based in Barcelona. Whether you want to buy or rent in Spain, if you’re looking for your dream home, a second home or an investment property, WeRelocateBCN is here to help both private and institutional clients find the place that meets all of their requirements. They also help expats and their families settle in Spain and assist companies with relocating their staff!