Can I buy a property in Spain without a Spanish bank account?


Can I buy a property in Spain without a Spanish bank account?

It’s one matter to see some gorgeous villas for sale in Sotogrande, and another thing for one or two of those properties to especially catch your eye. But what about if you’ve decided you would like to make a move on a specific Sotogrande villa, apartment, or other residential property?

Well, in that case, you will need to know about the knottier details of how you actually go about purchasing a Spanish home.

The broader Spanish property buying process is one we have written about extensively in the past here in the Property Sotogrande online news section. So, for this particular article, we thought we would focus on one aspect of that process that can cause confusion among many – whether it is necessary to open a Spanish bank account in order to acquire a Spanish property.

The answer: it’s not a compulsory requirement, but it is strongly recommended that you do so

You might have learned in the past – including from other articles on the Property Sotogrande website – that it is not mandatory to open a Spanish bank account if you are in the market for apartments or villas for sale in Sotogrande. Sure enough, this continues to be true.

However, there is a distinction to be made between what is technically “not required”, and a step that, regardless, is likely to make your life so much easier if you take it. And that is very much the case when it comes to a foreigner opening a Spanish bank account in order to complete a Spanish property purchase.

At the very least, if you do open a bank account in Spain, you are likely to appreciate the quicker payments that this enables, and the fact that it will take much of the stress out of the formalities. Indeed, you are also likely to be able to save some commissions if you have a Spanish bank account in place by the time of your Spanish property purchase.

Amid money laundering worries, it is crucial to ensure compliance

In practice, then, it is strongly advised that you do set up a Spanish bank account. This is even more the case in the current climate, when regulations have been introduced in Spain in order to combat money laundering risks, amid anxiety about the origins of certain property buyers’ funds.

As a would-be property buyer in Spain today, you will need to pass the filter of the country’s anti-money laundering (AML) system. This system demands that prospective home buyers in Spain justify where their funds have come from, so that it can be ascertained their money has not come from tax evasion or other illegal sources.

If you would like to purchase a Spanish property, then, it could be a very wise idea to open an account with a reputable Spanish bank, which will then be able to do its own bit to ensure you haven’t profited from money laundering practices. This will include the bank requesting documentation from you to make sure the sources of your funds are legal.

So, by opening a bank account in Spain during the early stages of the property purchase process, you can help put everyone’s minds at rest – including your own.

In any case, you will want to have a Spanish bank account in place at some stage in order to pay for the various essential ongoing costs associated with property ownership in the country – including the utilities costs, maintenance, local taxes, and so on. This is another factor that could give you strong reason to open a Spanish bank account now, instead of delaying.

Allow us to help you find your dream property in Sotogrande

We could outline further advice on how to make sure you’re choosing the right Spanish bank to open an account with in the first place – including checking out the bank’s reputation, and its service charges for depositing funds and receiving or sending transfers.

But of course, our own line of business here at Property Sotogrande is property, rather than banking. So, for advice on the latter, we would advise you to consult suitably qualified professionals.

In the meantime, why not use our website to hunt out excellent apartments and villas for sale in Sotogrande, as we bring together from the listings of multiple respected local estate agents? You never know – you could be taking your first steps today to transforming your long-held Spanish property ownership dreams into reality!